“This PLATINA is a gem, as indestructible as platinum. This Haring is more than worthy of the attention of a large audience.”
“Abke Haring and Koen van Kaam play two people who fail to reach each other: a poetic and penetrating duet. Moving and beautiful.”
In PLATINA, Abke Haring seeks out the company of an opponent who is actually present, played by Koen van Kaam, with whom she enters into discussion. Or at least, with whom she wants to enter into discussion. Insofar as a discussion is ever possible. Or is permitted. Or is circumvented. Haring searches for the words on the border of silence. Inevitable, compelling and perhaps even – eventually – healing.
For this intimist duet, musician Jimi Zoet designs a penetrating soundscape that closely follows the twists and turns of the actors’ thoughts.
From the jury report:
PLATINA (Platinum) is actress and theatre-maker Abke Haring’s last play with Antwerp’s Toneelhuis. In this impressive farewell, Haring portrays the final parting of a man and a woman in the succinct, mordant writing for which she is known.
The set consists of no more than a table and two chairs. On them, around it: two people wondering if there is anything more to be said to each other. Soberly choreographed and delicately lit like a Vermeer painting, their bodies say more than their words. The sparse sentences are punctuated by silence.
PLATINA has a tangible sensitivity which in Haring’s previous work usually came across as anger, but here it seems to have been quelled to the dregs of mild sadness. It is the vulnerable humanity that makes an impression – had the angry Abke Haring ever written an authentic declaration of love? Koen van Kaam and Haring herself perform metres from the audience, with a restrained expressiveness that is at times unbearable.
Finally this little gem shows how indestructible but hopeless the desire for real contact is, how regret for the unspoken always comes too late and how the endlessly turning mill-wheel of life – a muted soundscape by Jimi Zoet – does its work blindly and indifferently. Embrace the one you love. This PLATINA is a gem, as indestructible as platinum. This Haring is more than worthy of the attention of a large audience.