Театральная компания ЗМ


Meyerhold Centre, Moscow
Presented in the frame of Russian Case 2020
Creators: Olga Tarakanova , Daria Yurychuk , Alyona Papina , Ada Mukhina
Set designer: Alexandra Alexeeva
The authors of “Caries of Capitalism” met at the Meyerhold Centre during the BlackBox residence. Participants of this project start with team brainstorming, and the best team in the opinion of the Art Council receives a grant and an opportunity to realize their idea. Olga Tarakanova, Daria Yurychuk, Alyona Papina and Ada Mukhina came up with a performance criticizing the BlackBox residence, the stage where it takes place and the Russian system of cultural institutes in general. They proposed to tell the audience the prices for each element of the production they are currently watching (from the fees to the set) and to mention things there was not enough money in the budget for.
“We are the people of free art professions, most of us are freelancers – one of the most insecure social categories. We are all part of the “precariat” – said the participants of the performance about their place in society. And it’s not only about calling things by their true names, it’s also about coming to terms with the stress and worries which bring us together. The audience will be offered special exercises for dealing with body tension caused by overwork and frequent untimely payment. Physical practices, feminist agenda and criticism of capitalism in the same performance is a rare thing for the contemporary Russian theatre. However, the rarest thing is that everything is happening on the stage of the criticized institution.

Elizaveta Spivakovskaya

Your hatred of Mondays is hatred of capitalism, and precaries are caries of capitalism. The word "precariat" consists of two parts: "precarious" - unprotected, and "proletariat" - working class. This socially unprotected group is called the “new dangerous class” and is divided into three types: the poor, migrants, freelancers without a constant income, including artists. All of them are being exploited, and all of them have already started to be united.


Four girls have staged a performance similar to a reality show: several precarious heroes (people do not play, but act as themselves) between the lectures on the precariat, try to earn the trust of the audience so that they decide at the final vote which of the participants' projects will get part of the proceeds from the sale of tickets. All this aims to combat the exploitation of freelancers and other unprotected workers.


“Caries of Capitalism” was conceived not as dramatic, but as educational performance. For an hour and a half, the viewer must remember what a precariate is and why it is called a dangerous class. A hungry creative person is easily involved in the revolution, says British economist Guy Standing. The Creator will not tolerate this, he will scream about his pain and throw himself at others. This is not fruitless anger: girls offer options for getting out of the situation.


They do not have a stable income, employment benefits and pension savings, but they have a chance to save all of us from anxiety, competitive wars and inequality. The precariat is not just a new working class, but the engine of the coming world revolution. This is what social theorists speak more and more often, and the winners of the Blackbox Residence stage a performance about the precarians. The idea is a manifesto against low-paid labor, the form is a miniature double of the residence itself: free artists, freelancers, migrants, low-income citizens will talk about the performances of their dream, and the team members will give lectures on money in art and new class theory.


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