Jean Potage and Jan Fabre, or how to disappear completely

Jan Fabre clearly had a lot of fun writing the acts for Jean Potage and the other puppets that get to play a major role in The servant of beauty, the third part of his trilogy for actor Dirk Roofthooft (premiere: deSingel, Antwerp). And it’s great to see Roofthooft as a somewhat clumsy puppeteer, trying to become invisible. It is hilarious as well when all of a sudden even a puppet version of Fabre, smoking cigarettes, makes its entrance. But for an artist of Fabre’s stature, writing a text about beauty? I had expected more of this. Even though this is cleverly done; because the puppeteer, of course, is himself a puppet, manipulated by Fabre, the director. And one of his closing statements is one that makes you think: ‘beauty is believing in the lie of the imagination’. The servant of beauty certainly is entertaining, well-made and fun to watch but it stays a bit too much on the light side, in my opinion. And for those of you, having seen the first two parts of this trilogy, wondering if once again Fabre will finish it off with a grand finale with garlands or stones: you won’t be disappointed. More info here.

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