In his new work Timescape, Iranian writer, theatre maker and storyteller Keyvan Sarreshteh imagines time as a landscape. Through personal yet incomplete objects such as film negatives, blank pages from old diaries or unused children’s belongings, we voyage through the life story of Sarreshteh and his family, as if passing through a room. Their biographies become the framework for another, new narrative: ‘The time traveller is lost. He has been on the move for so long that he has forgotten where he should go or where he can go back to.’ Theatre is a place in-between. Between reality and fiction, authenticity and invention. In this impossible place, Sarreshteh opens up a possibility: of escaping the fleeting nature and difficulty of the moment by telling a story about a narrator who cannot be present, and a Time Traveller who has lost the presence of two people dear to him.
A note from the artistic team:
A few weeks ago, the two people missing were just in the story. While writing these passages, we were preparing to travel to Vienna to present this show. We were a group of three. But now, only Keyvan is going to be present. Two of us, Zahra and Ramin have been prevented from travelling. Here the political became quite personal. Their visas were rejected for reasons untold to us, kept from us, but heard about from unofficial sources. They were rejected for who they were: young Iranian artists at the beginning of their careers.
They are not time travellers; they can never return to this moment and experience it again. And we have nothing but a memory of their absence. And their memory of it is going to be the memory of a present missed.
Directed and performed by Keyvan Sarreshteh Concept and Creation Keyvan Sarreshteh, Zahra Mohseni Assistance Ramin Ziaee Sound Kaveh Abedin Light Ali Kouzehgar Production management Raha Rajabi
Production Nowrouze Honar Theatre Coproduction Wiener Festwochen, Points communs, Nouvelle scène nationale de Cergy-Pontoise et du Val d'Oise Tour, International distribution NH Theatre Agency
Premiere May 2023, Wiener Festwochen
Wiener Festwochen 2019 Apart-ment