Theater ASOU



Werkstatt 2.8



Pinter Studio,
Queen Mary Univ




unknown origin -
unbekannten ursprungs

A collaboration between Klaus Seewald (Theater ASOU) and Martin Welton

download                               photos

- press release *. pdf                         -  gallery
- pressphoto (photos: Marina Goulyaeva)

about the work in progress

Unknown Origin is a new piece of physical theatre made by an international team from Austria, Ireland and the UK. In a world on the move as never before Unknown Origin takes travels - planned, forced or accidental – as both its theme and its material. ‘How do we get there’, the performance asks, ‘and how will we know when we have arrived?’

Tired, but hopeful, a group of people is on their way. All they have with them are their battered suitcases filled with memories and fragments of a life lived elsewhere. Unknown Origin prises open these cases as they cross roads, gates and borders, through turnstiles and checkpoints, under fences and over white lines, from day into dark, and from dark into brightness…

Unknown Origin is the latest stage in a collaboration between Klaus Seewald (Austria) and Martin Welton (UK) which explores the movements, memories and dreams of arrivals and departures. With an original score and sound design by the Irish composer Mary Ronayne Keane and atmospheric lighting by the designer Eugen Schöberl the performance conjures up the delights and difficulties of getting to, through and around a dream called Europe.

Since the beginning of the process two versions of the play have been developed:
one involving two performers and the other five. As a result both versions are available to theatre venues and festivals.

This collaboration is formed around a long-term engagement with Phillip Zarrilli ’s paradigm of performance training. It draws on traditional practices of Asian martial and meditation arts to develop a psychophysically aware performer.

previous stages

"Feeling Space" which is how we titled the research process which is the foundation of this project began in Das andere Theater (Graz/Austria) in May 2006 and January 2007 and will continue in Chisenhale Dance Space (London/UK) in three blocks between May and September 2007.

"Unknown Origin" opened at The Body Navigation Festival to St.Petersburg (Russia) on the 15th of July 2007.

Lecture about the process of the project by Martin Welton at the Perforum ‘07, UCC Drama & Theatre Studies in Cork (Ireland).
5th of December 2007.

Invitation of an extended version to the Nationaltheatre to Tirana (Albania) at the 12th of April 2008 funded by the Austrian Embassy Tirana and the British Council Albania.
Invitation to the festival in Satu Mare (Romania) with a performance on the 17th of May 2008.

At the 3rd of October 2008 the extended version opened at the festival Werkstatt 2.8 in Oberzeiring (Austria) and immmediately afterwards traveled to the Int. Skampafestival in Elbasan (Albania).

In November 2008 the 2 prson version was re-opened in London at the Pinter Studio Theatre and the Phoenix in Exeter.

supported by
Austrian Cultural Forum London, Queen Mary University London, Chisenhale Dance Space

Das andere Theater, Land Steiermark/Kultur, Stadt Graz/Kultur, TAG Theateragentur, theaterland steiermark,

Austrian Embassy Tirana, Britsh Council Albania, Austrian Airlines, Fondazione Kulturore Patricia Nuxhi.


directon                        Klaus Seewald, Martin Welton
performer                    Uschi Litschauer, Moninka Zöhrer, Gernot Rieger, Klaus Seewald, Martin Welton
dramaturgy                 Bernadette Cronin, Monika Zöhrer
sounddesign               Mary Roynane-Keane
lightdesign                   Eugene Schöberl
costumes                    Barbara Häusl
ass.director                 Katja Zöhrer