Ant Hampton and Silvia Mercuriali's Rotozaza (1998 - 2009) produced innovative and risk-taking performance, notable for often involving selected performers who would simply agree to follow instructions, live and unrehearsed. This in turn gave rise to a now influential production, Etiquette (the first of the Autoteatro series which continues via their independent work). Autoteatro works are automatic performances sustained and played out by the audience themselves. Despite their micro or 'intimate' nature, large audiences can be accommodated over the timeframe of a festival. The work is production-light, inexpensive to travel and can often be performed in the language of the host country. (Etiquette now exists in 14 languages.)
Etiquette, Rotozaza’s first autoteatro work, is a half-hour experience for two people in a public space (eg. café, lobby). Participants wear headphones giving instructions for what to say or, occasionally, do. Etiquette explores the difficulty of turning our thoughts into words we can trust.
Available in 14 languages.
(28 minutes, multiple tables can be installed on a 'loop').
Both Hampton and Mercuriali offer workshops and more.
"A hyper-reality... By creating an entirely private space in the public setting of a cafe, something extraordinary happens."
The Guardian on Etiquette
"Part of the reason their shows are so gripping is the constant threat of disaster... at the same time, Rotozaza's work exists in a tightly controlled world"
New York Times