Jean Cocteau

جان كوكتو
让·科克托
ז’אן קוקטו
ジャン·コクトー
장 콕토
ЖАН КОКТО
Orphée
“The three basic themes of Orphée are:1-The successive deaths through which a poet must pass before he becomes, in that admirable line from Mallarmé, tel qu’en lui-même enfin l’éternité le change—changed into himself at last by eternity.2-The theme of immortality: the person who represents Orphée’s Death sacrifices herself and abolishes herself to make the poet immortal.3-Mirrors: we watch ourselves grow old in mirrors. They bring us closer to death.

JEANNE QUINN

A Thousand Tiny Deaths

SAM TAYLOR WOOD

a little death

Despite the broader reference to the traditional pictorial genre of “still life”, disseminated from the Dutch and Spanish painters of the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries, ‘Still life’ from 2001 and ‘A little death’ from 2002 refer especially to the painting of transient elements of the French Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin (1699-1779) to discuss the distortion and inexorability of time, the finitude of life or, above all, the interdependence between life and death. The title makes a direct reference to the expression with which the French philosopher Georges Bataille defined the orgasm: ‘une petite mort‘.

Philip Glass

Akhnaten
Portrait Trilogy:Einstein; Akhnaten; Gandhi
According to the composer, this work is the culmination of his two other biographical operas, Einstein on the Beach (about Albert Einstein) and Satyagraha (about Mahatma Gandhi). These three people – Akhenaten, Einstein and Gandhi – were all driven by an inner vision which altered the age in which they lived, in particular Akhenaten in religion, Einstein in science, and Gandhi in politics.
The text, taken from original sources, is sung in the original languages, linked together with the commentary of a narrator in a modern language, such as English or German. Egyptian texts of the period are taken from a poem of Akhenaten himself, from the Book of the Dead, and from extracts of decrees and letters from the Amarna period, the seventeen-year period of Akhenaten’s rule. Other portions are in Akkadian and Biblical Hebrew. Akhnaten’s Hymn to the Sun is sung in the language of the audience.
OPERA

Tatsumi Hijikata

Hosotan

Hijikata conceived of Ankoku Butoh from its origins as an outlaw form of dance-art, and as constituting the negation of all existing forms of Japanese dance. Inspired by the criminality of the French novelist Jean Genet, Hijikata wrote manifestoes of his emergent dance form with such as titles as ‘To Prison’. His dance would be one of corporeal extremity and transmutation, driven by an obsession with death, and imbued with an implicit repudiation of contemporary society and media power. Many of his early works were inspired by figures of European literature such as the Marquis de Sade and the Comte de Lautréamont, as well as by the French Surrealist movement, which had exerted an immense influence on Japanese art and literature, and had led to the creation of an autonomous and influential Japanese variant of Surrealism, whose most prominent figure was the poet Shuzo Takiguchi, who perceived Ankoku Butoh as a distinctively ‘Surrealist’ dance-art form.