Of All The People In All The World: Germany

FIDENA Festival, Bochum
27th September – 3rd October 2006


The modern art museum in Bochum had a reassuringly solid look to it when we pitched up with OATP for the FIDENA Festival 2006. The space was at its best in the late afternoon as sunlight captured the rice through huge plate glass windows and audiences caught glimpses of the show from the entrance hall. Programmed as part of an ‘object theatre’ festival featuring a fair number of puppet shows, at first glance OATP might have looked like the odd man out.

Thanks to our very amenable hosts we managed to catch some of the other work in the festival including a French company who combined theatre akin to Terry Gilliam let loose in a swimming pool with a live tribute to the Blues Brothers.

Audiences were enthusiastic and statistics on the dwindling birth rate in Germany, the changing landscape of the local economy and the eating habits of the nation drew a lot of interest. We were pleased to see several school groups arrive in the first two days and more pleased to see that they stayed in the space for a long time to investigate the Co2 stats and put us under pressure with questions about exactly how many people were currently considered space tourists.

Highlights included Graeme’s informative exposition to a group of 12 year olds on the populations of German cities that sound like foodstuffs and our team excursion to the Zollverein World Heritage Site near Essen, a former coal mine converted in to a vast design museum.

I loved the exhibition. Although I was astonished just how many people there are in Germany: 82,000,000!



Performers: Mike Kirchner, Graeme Rose, Jack Trow
Sound: Jon Ward
Concept: James Yarker
General Manager: Charlotte Martin
Advisory Producer: Nick Sweeting