Alan Alpenfelt Swiss performance and installation artist, theatre director and trainer, community & youth radio empowerer, record producer. 

Before The Revolution Remix

Can language contain the evolution of a society? [...]
Continue reading further down

Online theatre

Part of Lingua Madre - a project by Carmelo Rifici and Paola Tripoli winner of:
︎ the Hystrio Prize for Digital Theatre 2021
︎ Premio Ubu 2021

Web adaptation and direction
Alan Alpenfelt

Monica Piseddu
Valentino Villa

Sound design
Zeno Gabaglio

Web design
Ivan Pedrini
Mike Toebbe
Irene Masdonati


Presented in Lugano at the 27th edition of the FIT Festival, Before the Revolution by the Egyptian playwright Ahmed El Attar is here re-interpreted by Monica Piseddu and Valentino Villa and remixed by Alan Alpenfelt and Zeno Gabaglio who render it through a sound creation designed for web and SMS interaction.

In its original stage format, El Attar intertwined documentation and fiction relating to pre-revolutionary Egypt and the build-up to the “Arab Spring”. In this new adaptation, the sound creation conceived by Alpenfelt and Gabaglio for Lingua Madre draws on that imagery, with the addition of a reflection on whether it is possible or not to create Art freely.

The audience member is invited to enter the website and has the option whether to give his/her phone number, which will be deleted from the website’s system at the end of the experience. 
An enigmatic video starts and an audio-drama is played, meticulously associated with the ongoing development of the video’s content. During the experience, the phone starts receiving a series of sms’ which tell a parallel story that unfolds into a strikingly reality.
All three narratives lead to one place.


Enjoy the experience (only in Italian language):
︎ Before the Revolution Remix

Monica Piseddu & Valentino Villa during recording sessions, LAC, Lugano. 

Reading social network comments, with the inherent violence in the nefarious attacks launched from one account to another, the hatred and venom shouted at home or at neighbours, the violence of the superheroes that mass films continue to favour, the rhetoric that conceals (when it does not exploit) anxieties, malaise, distrust, poverty and misery - you would hope not. Yet it is precisely in language that one can read the direction in which the world is evolving.
Before The Revolution, language marks a limit, an anthropological and social condition that could no longer continue. And indeed in 2011 Arab society took to the streets in an attempt to find new solutions. But Before The Revolution also traces an impossibility of expression, an impossibility of progress, an inability - for language - to further investigate reality.
Indeed, in the original play, it was the theatrical staging, the stage space, that expressed the unspeakable in all its explosiveness. The challenge of transposing such a vehement duality - that of text and stage, without being able to rely on the physicality of the body - into sound alone seemed immediately daunting. The search for a solution - an authentic one, not a surrogate - meant defining a new alternative with respect to the sound flow of language. A deus ex machina of perception that would be able to instil the question, to suggest the doubt around the sayable. The unpredictable alternation between the platforms of digital fruition seemed to us the most appropriate solution. Leaving the linearity of
Before The Revolution to one vector - even if remixed with an authentically musical taste - and moving to other vectors the making of the project, that all those doubts - those reflections, those fears - have seen to be born and to mature.
- Director’s notes

Past Events

FIT - Festival internazionale del teatro e della scena contemporanea
Lingua Madre