I want to start by making a point about Off-human’s politics. One didn't have to guess how this performance fit (or rather didn’t fit) into the hyper-serious social resistance compounded by the events of the past several weeks, not to mention years. Thousands, if not millions, of lives are placed in danger, a danger that continues to grow with each day of this presidency. How can anyone create art that thrives in this climate? Off-human makes no explicit rejection of this reality but still lands far outside of its realm, presupposing nonsense and bullshit as order. Marcela Lucatelli and MOCREP are at the frontline of this destabilisation by asserting their validity as humans, particularly if it may be slightly off-color. It's here, in a concurrent performance of resistance, that Off-human leaves its mark. The ethics at play are of sensuality and divinity, but there is no god -- only respect and accountability. This is what's at stake within the temporal and spatial bounds of Off-human: vulnerability in the hands of a mob, prostration at the foot of the observer. The present indulgence is in celebration of sociality -- this is the case for the participants as well as the audience.

Jen Hill for Cacophony (ENG)


 

That some say that music and politics should not be mixed together, is the cleanest gibberish, when you hear Lucatelli. Her screams had so much anger, frustration, cursing and despair in themselves, that it could almost be too much of a good thing. But using different aids, she got the audience to sit spellbound on their skeletons. Her anger came out in the form of a primal scream in different manifestations, that hurt far into the spinal cord, and it's clear here that there is much life lived hidden under clothing.

Jan Granlie for salt peanuts* (NOR)


 

Opera, machinery and chaos meet each other in the evening's last work, Marcela Lucatelli's Veritas Sanitas Vanitas (Going Somewhere?). She occupies the theatrical starring role herself, as she is tied to a chair in the middle of the stage and slowly gets out of her bondage. The musicians are wearing ironic New Year bows in the hair and brightly coloured plastic ties, and the video projection offers intelligent chat bots, drone-like bombing raids and bread production. "There are so many buttons here" as repeatedly voiced by the projection. Everything can be involved. Computer and man meet each other as equals individualities, and things break, and things build up. It's too much. Everything is happening. Eggs smashed cabbage heads are hammered into pieces, Philip Thomas plays directly on the grand piano strings and throws ping pong balls into the space. A dictionary is teared apart and random words are announced. A cascade of information, one can hardly accommodate. But one is not alienated, not puffed up, on the contrary, you want to see it all again. (...) Especially Lucatelli's sensory bombardment was popular.

Sune Anderberg for SEISMOGRAF (DAN)


 

Marcela Lucatelli’s TUNING TIME was one of two pieces which, for me, seemed almost to make the whole festival collapse, by destabilising the assumptions which form its foundations. From the start the piece evaded any attempt to read it and categorise it. It invited us to see structures and frameworks, but refused to run its course in the way that we expected. At the same time, its ‘free’ elements were far from anarchic, and seemed carefully prescribed, albeit not according to the patterns initially suggested. The humour was intense, but very dry – not anarchic, but a parody of an expectation of anarchy. Here was a piece whose resistance was highly ‘situated’, and turned against its own context and audience. The listener, desperate to find value and meaning in every piece, is made aware of their own desire to understand and categorise a piece – to fit it into some sort of aesthetic logic – in order to judge it unequivocally. In refusing our attempts to do so, it challenges us to dismiss it, yet leaves us feeling uncomfortable. Obviously, this review is just such an example of an attempt to contain it, albeit as pure negation.

Thom Andrewes for the biting point (ENG)