Kirchengasse 44, A-1070 Vienna, Phone/Fax +43/1/5222375

migration mondays

migration mondays I : Sept.-Dez. 2006

Cooking-Shows with biographical stories of migrants
Theater + Action + Music + Discussion + Food + Drinks
at the BUTCHERIE & in the public space

every Monday at 7:30 pm non stop (pay as you wish)

The BUTCHERIE - is „history“…
The BUTCHERIE - makes „history“…
A former grocery shop of the 18th century acquires new functions

  • A new base center for contemporary theater
  • A space of “artistic near-distance supply“ in inner-city districts
  • A creative collection point of migrant story-telling
  • „in search for new forms of communal life“

The project

Starting in the fall of 2006 the new artistic team of the BUTCHERIE will continue to produce its successful participatory jour-fice events every monday nite

Based on the theme “migration&integration” the cycle will last three months and bring together migrants from the district to cook a typical meal from their respective countries while telling their life-stories within the setting of talk-show. Questions include: Whay did you come to Austria? How is your life in Vienna? How successful has your integration been?

For the socio-theatrical experiment the cookind-shows function as the social ritual, extending the biographical story-telling to include questions and answers from the audience and a sequel of choral readings from Elfriede Jelineks play „Das Werk“ (2000). Each evenign will conclude with a common meal, discussions and music. Jelineks cutting-edge text topicalizes with sharp wit, irony and lots of black humor a socially repressed trauma of Austrian society – the history of the construction of the large electric plant “Kaprun” which inaugurated the Second Republic and was built by countless as forced foreign labourors losing their lives.
Each show will led by one artist from the BUTCHERIE-team as talkshow-host, who actively works to integrate the audience.  For the project, the BUTCHERIE space  will be newly adapted to function as talkshow-“studio”, whereby the large butcher’s table in the shopwindows will be maintained and serve as stands for the spectators/participants.  Each Monday another basic food from a different country will be used in the cooking-show and critically examined; the “migration” of basic foods will be juxatposed to the migration of human beings. A dramaturgical team accompanies the working process with research on the international food-chain with all its ecological and political implications.   

The shows will be documented in writing and on video.  At the end of the series, a DVD will be produced and given to all invited story-tellers as a gift; it will also be used for public projections in showp-windows of local stores.  

Curators: Eva Brenner & Andreas Pamperl (Artistic Directors, BUTCHERIE)

Finally Peace („Endlich is a Ruah”)


about  the topic "Migration&Integration“

with texts by Elfriede Jelinek, Charles Ofoedu & Magda Woitzuck

realized in the context of the Two Year Project

"NICE  TO  MEAT  YOU!, Scenes from the Age of TERROR & COOLNESS" (2005 – 2007)

3 Production Units - running all year round

1. "MIGRATION mondays" - theater+performance+film+music+discussions every monday at 6 pm, free for all
2. "FLEISCHEREI mobil" - 3x 3 days at the end of each month - performance at "outpost locations" in the 7th district
- with artists of the BUTCHERIE & participants from the district:
Activists/artists of the BUTCHERIE invite mall groups of people from the district - youth, pensionists, small business owners, neighbours -  to participate in theater actions & performances with texts by Elfriede Jelinek, Charles Ofoedu & Magda Woitzuck at local stores and restaurants, scheduled to take place in a parallel action at 9 different locations.  The curators are artists and immigrants themselves. Special workshop with artists, youth and community people will preceed these performances - with the goal to create an authentic context of communal participation.

MAIN PROJECT: March/April 2007

with texts by Elfriede Jelinek, Charles Ofoedu & Magda Woitzuck

„Finally Peace“ is the continuation of theatrical experiments with the theater project „HEART.pieces“, realized at the BUTCHERIE in the winter of 2005 (following texts by Heiner Müller, world premiere in October 2005), offering concentrated threatrical works with target groups actively participating with the project in the public space.  With this new project the BUTCHERIE-team is purposefully building on the successful work with the Heiner-Müller action “10 days 10 nights” through intensive participatory preparation processes with people from the 7th district, integrating them methodologically into the artistic work of the core group. The research is targeted towards new texts of Elfriede Jelinek, the Nigerian-born author Charles Ofoedu & the young Austrian writer Magda Woitzuck focussing on the themes of „Migration&Integration“ based upon new findings and recent political research about immigration policies of Austria.  The project constitutes a continuation of the BUTCHERIE’s attempt to forge a new platform of intersection between theater, public life, and political agenda.

Part 2 of the Cycle „NICE  TO  MEAT  YOU!, Scenes from the Age of TERROR & COOLNESS” (2005 – 2007)

The two-year project deals with the processes of globalization and neo-liberalism, focussing on the special topic of immigration and integration in Austrian political life. In order to approach this complex topic two contemporary authors have been entrusted with play-commissions to represent the project – the young writer form Lower-Austria Magda Woitzuck (born 1983) and the Nigerian-Austrian author Charles Ofoedu. They will be writing premiere-texts about their person experiences with the topic of alienation and being-a-foreigner on Austria as well as alternatives to tendencies of desegregation in the Vienna of 2006.  They are set to investigate the social treatment of the “other” as well as a growing sense of isolation of Austrians accompanied by segregations of so-called aliens and a rapid dismantling of democracy as we know it.  Elfriede Jelinek’s topical text „Cheibani W.“ of 2003 as well as her seminal aesthetic proposition of 1983, “I want to be shallow“ (1983) and her Opus Magnum „The Work” [Das Werk] of 2002 function as prime foundations for the realization of the project.  Elfriede Jelinek explicitly supports the endeavour of the BUTCHERIE and wishes it good luck.  She has agreed to throw in her weight to obtain publishers’ rights of her works for the performances of the BUTCHERIE.

The theme of „Migration&Integration“

Socially and politically the new global migration as well as asylum laws within Europe delineate a new challenge for our time.  It is to be expected that this topic will also determine the future of the coming process of European unification. The question remains if the “bulwark” of Central-Europe will able to integrate its peripheries and - as hundreds of thousands of people are leaving their countries for various of reasons - will allow them access to human life-standards without annihilating their cultural identities.  Or will Central-Europe take refuge in a conservative kind of Nationalism while  regressing culturally and declaring itself the “island of the blessed”, forced to protects its priviledges by undemocratic means.  Culturally speaking the main objective to the future seems to be the building of new communities within the growing networks of civil organizations to enhance a growing acceptance of the “other” – meaning a heterogeneous and intercultural civil society in an expanded “European House” whereby cultural differences would be tolerated and appreciated as mutual enhancement.

Text choices: Provocating constructive approaches to Difference

Magda Woitzuck „Fate“ (“Schicksal”) (2006)
- the young up- and coming Lower-Austrian author or 23 years of age stands at the crossroads of a promising career.  Most recently she won the prestigious Siemens Youth Prize of Literature (Siemens Jugendliteraturpreis).

Charles Ofoedu „I'm a real Viennese" ("Ich bin ein Echter Wiener“) (2006)
Ofoedu ist a well-known Austrian/Nigerian-born author, a member of the PEN-Club of Austria and for many years activist in the Austrian African-Austrian community.  He has been a prime target of „Operation Spring“ (1999), who was unlawfully incarcerated by allegiance of drug-dealing and later released.  He will write a new text on the tpic "migration&integration" for the team of the BUTCHERIE.  His literary works have recently been acquired by the Austrian National Library on recommendation by leading Vienna University scientists.

These two authors – who represent, similar to the ensemble of the BUTCHERIE, diverse cultural and ethnic heritages - are writing under the signature of:

  • Repression & Integration
  • Body & Power
  • Art/Artists & Public Life
  • Identity & Difference
  • One Space, One Ensemble, One Theme – 2 Projects

One Space, one ensemble, one theme - 3 Production units - all year round

As continuation of the successful theater-project HEART.pieces (HERZ.angst) performed at the end of 2005 at the BUTCHERIE, the ensemble is now undertaking  a new artistic adventure focussing on expanding the socio-theatrical format of the new work: it means t actively involve new target groups from the community into the work such as youth, retired people, school-children, small business-owners, unemployed as well as artists of all kinds from the community.  Performance units will be developed with these target groups within the fame work of the new program “BUTCHERIE mobile” to involve these sectors of society in active artistic participation at everyday-places of their lives.  We call them “outpost locations” of the project BUTCHERIE.  Since they revolve around the everyday-life of these target groups: shops, restaurants, bars, local stores, back-yards, etc. In reversal, these same target groups will be invited – as part of the second segment of the yearly project – to the BUTCHERIE to implement cultural statements of their own liking, using texts by Elfriede Jelinek’s play-text “Das Werk” (“The Work”) .  Dealing with the issue of work and the history of forced labour and its consequences in post-war Austria, this text is prone jolt a lively discussion about the nature of work today and the heritage of Austrian welfare in the face of current social cut-backs, hitting artist as well as normal people alike.

MAIN PROJECT - March/April 2007

In reversal of the previous dramaturgical processes, community people and business owners as well as activists from the district will be invited to  the BUTCHERIE to participate in theater and art performances there.

The Two Year Project  „NICE TO MEAT YOU!“, Scenes from the Age of TERROR & COOLNESS (2005-07) shall open a forum to evaluate the topicality of themes discussed by the interdisciplinary team of BUTCHERIE-artists of the last two years about burning social questions: the disillusionment of left projects ad their legacy, social alternatives in the face of complete sell-out of former leftist segments of society, projections of female emancipation as pre-fashioned by artist such as Elfriede Jelinek, anti-racist platforms and conceptions as prefigured by artist such as Charles Ofoedu, utopian visions and hopes of young artists such as Magda Woitzuck. Last but not least, the focus of the Yearly Project „Finally Peace“ is targeted to representatives of the 7th district of Vienna – be it inhabitants, business owners, local shop-keepers and members or social and cultural organizations – as well as “normal human beings”, invited to actively participate in the theatrical process at 9 "outpost-locations" of the BUTCHERIE.