Clement Dazin and Ashtar Muallem's COSMOS Comes to the Edinburgh Fringe

Performances run 1-11 August.

By: Jun. 14, 2024
Clement Dazin and Ashtar Muallem's COSMOS Comes to the Edinburgh Fringe
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Clement Dazin and Ashtar Muallem's Cosmos is headed to Edinburgh Fringe! Performances run 1-11 August.

Emotional, self-deprecating and provocative, Cosmos is a collaboration between the Palestinian aerial acrobat and contortionist Ashtar Muallem and French circus artist Clément Dazin. The show premiered in Marseille, performed in French, in 2021, a version in Arabic premiered in Ramallah in 2023 and this English version is the UK premiere.

Cosmos is the latest in a series of works Clément Dazin had made with other artists. He says: “I first met Ashtar Muallem in 2009 at the Centre National des Arts du Cirque, where we studied for three years. I was fascinated by her. She is a strong woman and an amazing artist. At that time, it was incredibly important for her to use circus as a platform to express her Palestinian identity. Ten years later, I approached her with the idea of directing her in a solo performance. It quickly became clear that we would collaborate on writing a show together, blending themes of spirituality and Palestine in a humorous and feminist manner, showcasing her circus abilities. We delved into her life experiences, emotions, and aspirations, playing with words, contortions, laughter, and tears to create a deeply resonant performance.”

Dazin and Muallem take their audience on a journey - a journey through the existential questioning of a city-dwelling woman in her thirties and through her multiple attempts to find spirituality and the energy that connects our emotions to our bodies.

As Muallem dances, stretches and bends, she weaves memories - the show is partly inspired by her grandmother - and fiction, blurring the lines between what is real and what is invented. Her extraordinary elastic body spirals into beautiful and eye-popping places, echoing a life lived between two countries, two languages, two cultures, between solitude and togetherness.

In her performance, Muallem portrays the dramatic circumstances of her homeland, skilfully conveying the intricate reality of a nation disappearing before her eyes while maintaining a veneer of levity and humour.

The work of both artists was last seen at the Fringe in 2015 when Clément Dazin presented Bruit de couloir in collaboration with Crying Out Loud and Ashtar Muallem co-devised and performed in B-Orders with the Palestinian Circus.


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