laGeste's first production has been selected for HET THEATERFESTIVAL!
It is an honour to count
Grandpa Puss; or how God disappeared by Lisaboa Houbrechts among the most important creations of the past season. A feather in the cap of Lisaboa and of the entire team. A new chance to (re)discover the performance.
Welcome in De Factorij in Zaventem on 9 and 10 September. Tickets can be found

© Kurt Van der Elst -
© Kurt Van der Elst

Jury report: Grandpa Puss; or how God disappeared - laGeste | Lisaboa Houbrechts

"A family epic that spans three generations, from World War II to the present day: Lisaboa Houbrechts shows herself to be particularly ambitious in her most large-scale performance to date. Grandpa Puss; or how God disappeared revolves around the hidden traumas of a family and an entire nation, and how they affect the following generations. Using text, image and music as equally valid narrative strategies, all this is made tangible through the eyes of a child. Houbrechts does not shy away from the grand gesture, witness the impressive stage design by Filip Peeters and a musical score that combines Bach's St. John Passion with contemporary electronic music and accordion by Philippe Thuriot.

Grandpa Puss commanded respect from the jury. It is rare nowadays to see a narrative on stage that dares to be so comprehensive in both its time arc and the (dark) themes it covers, ranging from pedophilia to collaboration. It is a Clausian production, but with a spirituality and caring outlook that comes across as very contemporary and personal. With striking tableaux vivants, Houbrechts proves that she is a strong image maker, for instance through the fascinating and elusive character of dancer Boule Mpanya. Some strong individual acting performances flow seamlessly into the swirl of the collective on stage, not least through a very mature handling of the children in the cast.

Whereas earlier work by Houbrechts within Kuiperskaai and Toneelhuis' P.U.L.S. trajectory still liked to experiment with the right balance in stylistics and narrative dramaturgy,
Grandpa Puss; or how God disappeared now shows the maturity of an auteur-director who understands the large stage as a connecting public place for many theatrical signs and disciplines, and for the intimate and the political. This creation incessantly makes tangible that no life is separate from the context and the great waves of time."

published on: 06.06.23