Göteborgs Dans- och teaterfestival

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Open Call

Volunteers for the performace "Bench Invasion" during Gotenburg Dance and Theatre Festival 2024.

Dieter and volunteers carrying benches. Photo: Lea Blagojevic.

Are you good at listening and value human connections?

Bench Invasion involves the artist Dieter Missiaen, together with 10 volunteers, each carrying a portable bench, walking around in Gothenburg, placing their bench in a suitable location, and inviting people around the area to engage in conversation with them. At the end of the project all the bench carrying volunteers invite the people who have joined them for conversation to a gathering outside Stora Teatern. There, all the people involved in the project share a “Swedish fika” and toast together to violin music.

On the 23rd and 24th of August 2024, the Dutch ‘Company KraK’ will be attending the Gothenburg Dance and Theatre Festival, taking over the streets of Gothenburg. We are currently seeking volunteers of all kinds, to participate in the company’s art project. You who apply should enjoy talking with people from all backgrounds. You are open-minded, attentive, and have a genuine interest in listening to others’ stories. We aim for our 10 volunteers to represent a diversity of the Gothenburg population. Come as you are, with your curiosity for human encounters!

As a thank you for participating in ‘Bench Invasion’, you get two tickets to a performance at Gothenburg Dance and Theatre Festival 2024.

Volunteer speaking with citizen. Photo: Philippe Vanden Bussche.

Project timeframe, 3-4 hours on Friday the 23rd and/or on Saturday the 24th

– 30 minutes of preparation and information outside Stora Teatern with the artist Dieter.
– 1.5 hours walking around in central Gothenburg with benches to converse with people.
– 1 hour to toast and have a coffee together outside of Stora Teatern (non-alcoholic cider, some biscuits, and coffee are provided), accompanied by violin music.

Every day, 10 people can help carry this project! Are you one of them?

Send an e-mail including your name, age, languages you speak, and a short description of who you are, to ronja.aberg.tarnklev@stadsteatern.goteborg.se.

However, before you apply, please notice that you must be able to carry a small bench under your arm (or have assistance with carrying) and a bag on your back with the bench’s legs (the benches are the same as those seen in picture 1).

Concluding toast together. Photo: Philippe Vanden Bussche.

More information and project trailer

In the pop-up performance ‘Bench Invasion’, artist Dieter Missiaen moves into public space with ten local people, each with a bench under their arm, looking for contact. At an unannounced moment, they set up the benches and actively invite people to sit next to them. They are present, they listen. At the end, they all come together for a toast: the bearers of the benches and the sitters. Bystanders are also invited.

“We convert the benches into one long table in the public space. With words and music, we toast to the beauty of small encounters and to life. In this way, we (re)connect people, are present and pays tribute to everything that happens in our public space. After, the communal table turns into benches again. The square is empty, and everyone continues their own way. Like nothing ever happened.”


Compagnie Kraks website

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The festival is produced by Stora Teatern and is the natural meeting spot throughout the festival week.

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