Feeling Dubbing is a performance based on the vocal performances of Arabic-dubbed Japanese cartoons that the artist watched while growing up in Kuwait. The cartoons eventually led her to move to Japan and live there, but after a few years she came to realize that it wasn’t the cartoons that she loved so much but the Arabic voice performances of the dubbers that animated the various characters. The voice actors were all Lebanese and living in Beirut during a time of turmoil and war in the early 1980s. In the performance, her personal story, the dubbers’ stories, and the dramatized script contained within the cartoons merge together to form an uncanny hybridized monologue. The piece is mainly performed by a life-size 3 printed marionette puppet of the artist herself that ‘speaks’ in the manly dubber’s voice. Here, the artist appears besides the puppet, speaking only in Japanese. At the end of the performance, the artist discovers that she is not original – there are many copies of her – and the plot ends in this tragedy of fragmentation and multiplicity.
Commissioned by the Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels) and Thalia Theater (Hamburg)
Concept, creation & direction: Monira Al Qadiri; Performed by: Monira Al Qadiri, Wahid Jalal; Technical direction & light design: Nadim Deaibes; Puppeteering & puppet design : Jochen Lange; Script: Ma’n Abu Taleb & Monira Al Qadiri; Sound design : James Kelly; Costume design : Raya Kazoun; Technical actor : Pol Seif; Prop production: Doris Boerman, Gaelle Choisne, Aldo Brinkhoff