Weaknesses (Debolezze) is the second chapter of the OHT Performance Series, an ongoing archive of performances inspired by the sociological research of Richard Sennett on the emotional twists caused by working conditions. It catalogues the limits of daily life, the embarrassments and deficiencies of our society, which become theatrical material through the use of irony. Weaknesses opens with the events of one of the protagonists from the first episode, Patric, after he received a study grant for the Palais de Tokyo. Between one performance and another, something must have gone wrong: Patric has a new group of friends that he has met at a basketball court in the Paris suburbs.

The impossibility to improve means that perfection becomes something apathetic, detached from reality, whose animal guide could be the Gattopardo (leopard) of Giuseppe Tomasi of Lampedusa. The boys of the basketball court throw themselves against perfection – in an unconscious way and without any possibility of success.

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In accordance with Richard Sennett, the performance underlines how the exasperated search for perfection excludes the majority of people. Likewise, the performance starts with the protagonists’ weaknesses as a way to formulate strategies to resist an invisible social pressure. The protagonists seem to be asking: why is human weakness considered an act of negligence towards our society? What if weaknesses represent the possibility to improve? What if they are the precondition for change?

Representing the only certainty is the fact that weaknesses become tangible: something concrete that can improve thanks to empathy. A mechanism in total contrast with the act of revolutionary violence theorized by Mao Tse-Tung: the boys of Weaknesses perform a disordered, but nonetheless strong, gesture of civil disorder.

The first show (title: "Self-portrait with two friends") deals with failure in a private space. The second (title: "Weaknesses") turns on exposing one's own weaknesses in a public place. Finally, the third (title: "Project Mercury") revolves around the absence of privileges in the outer-space.

Richard Sennett
Born in Chicago in 1943, he is Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics and at New York University. His studies focus on the analysis of life in urban contexts, the emotional consequences caused by excessive precariousness and the ways in which people produce culture. He was a personal advisor to former President Barack Obama and his studies have influenced many scholars including Zygmunt Baumann. His research was recognized with the Hegel Prize for Lifetime Achievement (2006) and the Gerda Henkel Prize (2008), a prize worth € 100,000.

"The evil you tolerate depends on the good you want" - Richard Sennett



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by OHT | Office for a Human Theatre

> idea, directing, set-design Filippo Andreatta
> by and with Sara Rosa Losilla, Francesco Napoli, Patric Schott
> dramaturgy Filippo Andreatta and Charles Adrian Gillott
> technician Giovanni Marocco
> song “Take off that dress for me” by Micah P. Hinson
> production OHT, Fondazione Caritro
> co-production Centrale Fies, CRT Teatro dell’Arte Triennale Milano
> residency Centrale Fies
> thanks to Andrea Cozzi, Stefania Santoni, Virginia Sommadossi, Carolina Truzzi
> dedicated to Galva Miuda, Pesce and all losers of ours

production history

02.VIII.2015 Dro, Drodesera festival – Centrale Fies
from 11 to 15.XI.2015 > Milano, CRT Teatro dell’Arte Triennale
20.I.2016 > Rovereto, auditorium Melotti – Centro S. Chiara

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