Die Werke von James Joyce vollständig verstehen zu wollen, ist ein unerreichbares Ziel - und genau deshalb auch ein grosser Reiz. Ein holländischer Perkussionist, eine irische Sängerin und ein schweizer Schauspieler lassen sich auf dieses Abenteuer ein und nähern sich auf verspielte Weise dem weltberühmten Oeuvre des irischen Schriftstellers.
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The works of the Irish author James Joyce are often thought to be impenetrable, which makes them all the more a challenge for an adventurous band of artists to stage them in rapid succinct transformations. In «Pure Joyce» an Irish singer, a Dutch percussionist and a Swiss actor engage in a search of a quintessential, pure, Joyce, in a triangular stage medley that seems to bring much into disarray while ultimately keeping close to the Joycean flavour.

In their common research Shirley Grimes, Rob Kloet (of NITS fame) and Stefan Kollmuss descend into the lighthearted profundities of the intricate later work, «Ulysses» and «Finnegans Wake», and turn into versatile protagonists who bring some of the labyrinthine interior monologue to life. They also tackle salient verbal creations like the Thunderwords of «Finnegans Wake» where monstrous words mutate into sound, rhythms and songs.

In «Pure Joyce» Literature, Music and Drama interact animatedly; experimental forays and surprising connections capriciously reflect Joyce’s verbal imagination. The team confronts the works in associative sensuality — without undue awe confronted with daunting World Literature.

A new, original approach to Joyce combines with autonomous musical and dramatic effects. The sparkling compact production aims at an entertainment that will allure both seasoned Joyce fans and curious newcomers even without a profound knowledge of English.

The performance lasts about 75 minutes and is without a break.


Shirley Grimes (vocals, acting), Rob Kloet (percussion, acting), Stefan Kollmuss (acting, vocals), Hannes Glarner (director), Martin Burkhardt (light & sound), Rudolf Jost (costumes), Beda Senn (producer, KataKULT), Patricia Umbricht (production manager, cultact)

Music by Shirley Grimes and Rob Kloet. Song «Of the dark past» arranged by Simon Ho.

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