Performing arts programming Laura Graser
How did you experience the sudden end of the 19/20 season and the programming of the 20/21 season? Did it keep you awake at night or was it manageable?
The first weeks were pretty tough. Dealing with the cancellations and accepting that all the work we’d put into conceiving and planning our events would go to waste was difficult. At the same time, working on next season’s programme seemed a bit absurd. Sitting there in front of my screen in my home office like my colleagues, with decisions to be made, I felt rather isolated and tense.
On a more positive note, personally, I went from having a diary crammed with trips abroad and evenings and weekends spent at Rotondes, to suddenly having a lot of blank pages and time to spend with my family, which I enjoyed immensely!
Could any of the events that unfortunately had to be cancelled these past months be postponed to the upcoming season?
Yes, we tried to postpone most of the events to the next season, and even have one or two lined up for 21/22. Luckily, all this was possible by playing a little ’tetris’ with the dates and events till everything fit – apart from the circus show Famille Choisie, planned as our season-closer. Long before the lockdown, they had already decided to stop touring next season to work on other projects.
Of course, it’s another story for our ‘Labos’ workshops and our collaborative projects. We replaced them immediately with different formats online to stay in touch with the participants and our public.
Share some of the 20/21 highlight with us!
The season will of course be packed with gems, so it’s dangerous to ask me that question! But for example I can say that I’m really pleased about the next edition of Fabula Rasa, which will be particularly opulent. I’m also looking forward to seeing our international coproduction Identity in October, which will unite 19 young participants from four different countries on stage. Their final rehearsals in Stuttgart had to be postponed from last April to this summer.
What are your hopes for life at Rotondes in the coming weeks?
I hope the artists will be able to fully take over this wonderful place again. And that our audience will return, relaxed, curious and open-minded, without too much apprehension about the situation and without letting the health measures get in the way of experiencing and sharing moments together.
Do you have a message for the public?