Gur Arie Piepskovitz on ReVisions

In our latest blog, Gur Arie Piepskovitz shares insights into his latest project ReVisions.

ReVisions runs Thu 17 – Sat 19 Jan. Click here for more info and to book tickets.

I started researching for ReVisions in 2017. I wrote it in chunks and finished it a year later. Then rewrote it again and again, had a run in July, got feedback, rewrote it again and now I’m about to see the second version come to life.

Below are general, concrete and baby insights into this project

As a Gay Jewish Israeli who lives in London, I am, like everyone else, a display of identities.  I sometimes think we are expected to represent these identities, define and redefine ourselves and be authentic to our real selves.

My main question is how we can enable these changes if we are so locked on terminology. Aren’t we narrowing down our true range by meticulously looking for the right definition? I don’t know yet

I started the research for the show by looking into ways we can extend our mindset and broaden our perception.

‘How can one change reality by perceiving it differently?’ was my igniting question. Two years later I can say that I still don’t know if it’s possible.

I don’t know if our search for a different kind of reality may hinder us from embracing reality or actually provide us with a unique opportunity to shape our vicinity?

My point of reference for this was Rujia; my great aunt who threw a party the night before the Germans invaded Poland. Later, she was caught and was going between three different concentration camps for being Jewish. When she talks about the subject she chooses to elaborate on the party and avoid the atrocities. This is what I saw as a conscious move to escape the grotesque reality.

My second point of reference of reality can be modified was theatre, specifically, acting. Theatre is that playground which we all think is embarrassing to watch and yet audience and spectators come to expose themselves to the most cringe-inducing art form and that is the magic of theatre. It requires imagination, it’s inclined to fail and yet zealously we go on the altar to tell a story, to portray a piece of life

ReVisions brings to the ring 5 different personas obsessed about their identities, fighting to be at the front while they are trying to tell on stage the story of a Holocaust survivor. In an era of simulacra, duplicated imagery and Botox clones what is the value of our identity? Is it essentially another form of commodity?

ReVisions will deal with those questions through dark humor, subversive role-playing and pacey dialogues. All on the backdrop of a rehearsal room-theatre being the ultimate battleground for characters trying to change their given role in order to stay true to themselves.

The drama in the play, for me, is in the tenacity of the characters to fit reality to their own needs. The tragedy of the play is reality; a fate we all share and strive to make sense of. The party Rujia threw during the chaotic ocean of WW2 may be only a ripple, but even this minor movement is what makes each personal thread so unique and magical.