Thursday 9 February 2012, 09:30
A touring production which explores the theatrical possibilities offered by a curious scientific theory is coming to Wales.
Performance artists Reckless Sleepers have revived their production of Schrödinger, named after the Nobel Peace prizewinning scientist Erwin Schrödinger, and his thoughts on quantum mechanics.
The Austrian physicist made a name for himself in 1935 with a paradoxical "thought experiment" about the possibilities offered when a cat is placed in a box with a bottle of poison gas.
Because he believed light particles are in different states of being at the same time, Schrödinger concluded it was possible for the cat to be both alive and dead in the box simultaneously.
Schrödinger decided that whether or not the bottle of gas opens and the cat is poisoned depends on whether a radioactive atom decays which will trigger the poison to be released. So quantum theory allows for the cat to be both 'decayed' and 'not decayed' until the box is opened.
Reckless Sleepers have used this concept as a springboard for a whole performance with the production revolving around their very own box of endless theatrical possibilities.
Reckless Sleepers in action
The box is covered with hatches and doors and acts as an experimental chamber used by the group of artists on stage. They climb in and out of it, carrying out research into immeasurable theories and creating a world where the boundaries between truth and illusion are blurred.
Mole Wetherell, artistic director, says: "Laws are made, bent then broken. It's a visually mesmerising performance that sways between question and answer, chaos and order, what we can measure and what we can't.
"Over the past 10 years we have looked at the project again and again.
"The structure - the box or sixth performer as it is called is a constant - the doors, hatches, walls exits and entrances are in the same place.
"But the people who occupy it will have changed - like the spaces that we perform it in, the cities that we visit will have gone through a transformation."
The Anglo-Belgian company has made a name for itself devising original theatre pieces and installations for theatres, galleries and museums. The company embraces all ideas, even those arrived at in error, and prides itself on the fact that sometimes its concepts can be uncomfortable to watch.