Coming soon: How four adventurers remake the world in Germinal…

Adeline Loh

August 22, 2017

Noorlinah, Director of The O.P.E.N., has been telling me Germinal is a much-watch since the start of the festival, but because I’m not really one to plan too far ahead, I’ve only just gotten my tickets to catch Germinal, which is happening at SIFA (yes!) next week from 31 August to 2 September.

germinal 5

Image courtesy of Bea Borgers

I understand not everyone may fancy this off-the-cuff approach, but if you’ve got some time on your schedule, you might want to catch this witty, experimental play, which is looking be 75-minutes of sheer delight. 

Going by the reviews, Germinal seems to be in little league of its own: this review calls it an act of “philosophical spelunking” (haha, love the sound of that!) while the New York Times describes it as a piece of “ontological vaudeville”. This “most-talked about play in recent years” also won chops here from one audience for its “perfectly executed elements of humor that had the audience in stitches”.

Germinal’s creators include Halory Goerger, whose French and has a background in information science, and Antoine Defoort from Belgium, who hails from the visual arts. Not bad considering that Germinal is only their second show as a duo, and that they seem to be come from a little bit more of an outsider status to theatre. Did I mention their first production was also titled &&&&& & &&&? :) 

germinal 6

Image courtesy of Alain Rico

The vibe of Germinal kind of reminds me of a “if-Jacques-Derrida-met-an-indie-rock-band” type of situation. Think of four non-descript actors dressed in T-shirts attempting to deconstruct the meaning of the world and existence, and then figuring out how to put things like language, civilisation, communication all together back again.

Except they do it with cooler, more contemporary tools, like guitars and microphones, and with a casual audacity on a bare-as-you-can-get stage. One scene I’m really looking forward to is how one actor takes a huge pickaxe and smashes a gaping hole in the stage floor. Is this really going to happen at SOTA Drama Theatre stage?

germinal 7

Image courtesy of Christophe Raynaud de Lage

But with only 75 minutes, you really wonder what the creators had to go through when deciding what to include or exclude from the play, considering their ambition was, in their own words, to “create an universe”.

Apparently, topics like transportation and sex were the ones that got the cut, because they’re “unnecessary” in a world that is about to end in 75 minutes. I’m liking how unsentimental these guys are.

But if you ask me, I’m just looking forward to how this guys manage to crack the philosophical code and turn into a fun night out at the theatres.

You can still get your tickets here and check out full details here.

See you there! 

  • 2017