experts of the everyday Meg Mumford und Ulrike Garde www.realtimearts.net, RealTime issue #108 April-May 2012 pg. 26 03.05.2012
One evening, 100 Melbournians file onto a revolving, circular stage in Melbourne Town Hall. They are here to perform in a theatre show in which Melbourne’s population is represented by 100 people. Just one of these people was chosen by Rimini Protokoll. This first person had 24 hours to recommend the next, who had 24 hours to recruit the next, and so on.
Each participant was chosen according to five statistical criteria that reflect Melbourne’s demographics from census data: > age > region of birth > family composition > residential location > sex.
Eight additional filters were also applied: > culturally and linguistically diverse > education level > engagement in employment > gender identity > income spread > Indigenous Australian > mixed ability > sexual orientation.
At first, this casting process was easy. But with each passing day, the stakes increased. As the various statistical categories began to fill up, the chances of finding people who could occupy the remaining categories became more remote. But now, around four months later, these 100 interconnected Melbournians are filing onto a revolving, circular stage in Melbourne Town Hall.
Tonight, they are performers, they are people – and they are percentage points. Each individual represents roughly 41,000 Melbournians – that is, 1% of Melbourne’s population of around 4.1 million people. Together, these 100 people represent a demographic profile of metropolitan Melbourne. A series of statistical groupings enacted onstage, like a giant pie chart brought to life. A live modelling of Melbourne on a revolving stage-world whose central axis is right in our civic centre. A theatrical counter-action to every political argument and cost-benefit strategy that is bolstered by statistics. Working with Berlin’s acclaimed theatre makers Rimini Protokoll as part of the City of Melbourne Arts and Participation Program, these 100 citizens have created a living, breathing portrait of Melbourne: part theatre, part reality, and 100% Melbourne.
Concept and direction: Helgard Haug, Stefan Kaegi, Daniel Wetzel
Producer: City of Melbourne
Project manager: Vicky Guglielmo (City of Melbourne Arts and Participation Program)
Associate director and casting: Bec Reid (City of Melbourne Arts and Participation Program)
Casting assistant: Sam McGilp (City of Melbourne Arts and Participation Program)
Lighting and stage realisation: Jennifer Hector assisted by Amelia Lever-Davison
Video: John Paul Tansey (About3minutes Productions)
Band: The Bombay Royale
Music direction: Andy Williamson and Rimini Protokoll
Theatre assistants: Suzanne Kersten and Julian Rickert
Production manager: Adrian Aderhold (City of Melbourne Arts House)
Stage manager: Bindi Green
Assistant stage managers: Jess Keepence, Tom Warneke
Auslan interpreters: Lynne Gordon, Kirri Dangerfield, Anna Vost and khang Chiem
Crew: Nitrox, James Lipari, Stu Padbury, Tom Rodgers and assistants
Audiovisuals and sound: Optical Audio Productions
Photographer: Carla Gottgens
Photography research advisors: City Research (City of Melbourne)
Book design and concept: Dom Forde, Lynley McDonald, Victoria U (Famous Visual Services)
Book writer and editor: Tom Cho
Book proof reader: Natalie Book
100% Melbourne presented by the City of Melbourne and Rimini Protokoll, supported by the Victorian Government through Arts Victoria, the Goethe-Institut Australien and the Hebbel Theatre Berlin.