Part 1 of the “Faking It” Trilogy

We are driven by the exploration of a very simple topic: How to do things with words. Our goal is to investigate the possible physical use of written text in the context of dance performance. How do you dance with text? What new meanings arise when dancers set inscribed objects in motion? Which worlds are conjured up when we move through a labeled environment? The compilation may sound simple, but it contradicts a common prejudice of the essential non-verbal peculiarity of dance and jerkily expands the ability of the dance to carry meanings – and this in the truest sense of the word.

This production is conceived as a series of experiment. The first results would take the form of concrete poetry, visual wordplay and Dadaistic synaesthetic paradoxes (see Magritte’s famous caption “ceci n’est pas une pipe”). However, when the whole-body creativity of professional dancers is used over a longer period of time, the project gains depth and ambiguity. We hope for strong alchemical reactions: sparks and clouds of swirling meanings, the transformation of basic elements into theatrical gold, the appearance of a portal to the unknown.

As the first production stage, we are planning a series of video studies that will be presented on various online platforms in autumn 2021. These etudes form the basis for a second production stage: a full-length dance production on the stage of the Dampfzentrale Bern in February 2022. For the third stage, a street theater version is planned for the summer of 2022, which will serve as a concise summary of the previous research.

“How to Do Things with Words” is the first part of the “Faking It” trilogy, which has been supported by a multi-year production grant from the City of Bern for the years 2022-2024.


Joshua Monten


Guy Cools


Dampfzentrale Bern
Centre de Création Helvétique des Arts de la Rue (CCHAR)


Kultur Stadt Bern


16 February 2022 — Dampfzentrale Bern (CH) — try-out/school performance
17 February 2022 — Dampfzentrale Bern (CH) — premiere
18 February 2022 — Dampfzentrale Bern (CH)
19 February 2022 — Dampfzentrale Bern (CH)
30 July 2022 (1-2x) — La Tournée des Plages, Malsaucy/Belfort (F)
31 July 2022 (1-2x) — La Tournée des Plages, Malsaucy/Belfort (F)
August 2022 (2-4x) — La Plage des Six Pompes, La Chaux-de-Fonds (CH)
11 August 2022 (3x) — Buskers Bern Festival (CH)
12 August 2022 (3x) — Buskers Bern Festival (CH)
13 August 2022 (3x) — Buskers Bern Festival (CH)