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Soon, ‘Inside Pussy Riot’, A New Performance At Saatchi Gallery In London

Last March, I attended ‘Pussy Riot Theater’ at the Fonda Theater without knowing exactly what to expect, and the show (entirely in Russian) ended up to be an intense and powerful experience inside the world of the Russian feminist punk rebels, with unavoidable parallels with the US current political climate. At a time when the Trump-Russia investigation is still at the center of every political debate, the story of these courageous women, who are real insiders in Putin’s Russia, is more relevant than ever.

Saatchi Gallery in London is about to present a similar performance, described as ‘an immersive experience, about Nadya Tolokonnikova‘s tribulations as the founder of Pussy Riot, the post punk, feminist art collective who stuck two fingers up at the Russian system and suffered the consequences’.

Presented by Les Enfants Terribles theatre company, ‘Inside Pussy Riot’ will remind audiences what actually happened and how one’s basic human rights and freedom of expression can be taken away at any point

If Maria ‘Masha’ Alyokhina was leading the show at the Fonda theater, this new show is introduced with a comment by Nadya Tolokonnikova: ‘Inside Pussy Riot shows you what prison, prosecution of political activists and police oppression looks like. It also reminds you what democracy, on the contrary, looks like. And when I say ‘democracy’, I mean real democracy, which is about direct participation of citizens. Inside Pussy Riot plunges you into the totality of an authoritarian system – if you do not choose real democracy and participation, authoritarianism chooses you.’ Tolokonnikova was prosecuted for performing a punk prayer called ‘Virgin Mary Put Putin Away’, inside Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, an act which was seen as a direct attack on the Russian Orthodox Church’s unequivocal support for Vladimir Putin.

Here is what writer and artistic director of Les Enfants Terribles Oliver Lansley had to say about the show: ‘We’re so excited to be collaborating with Pussy Riot on this experience. Our plan is to provoke, challenge and make our audiences understand the experience Pussy Riot went through whilst also encouraging them to ask important questions about their own beliefs and what they might do if they found themselves in a similar situation. Freedom of speech is one of the most important contemporary values we have and one we often take for granted.’

‘The story of Pussy Riot exemplifies the fight for freedom of speech and expression in an authoritarian society,’ added co-producer Alexandrina Markvo. ‘It is a story that needs to be told today. While the setting for the show is Russia, this situation is all too familiar in many countries today. I hope this blisteringly political production will also serve as a powerful reminder to citizens of democratic countries to cherish and defend their freedoms. I am very excited as a producer to bring this immersive performance to the London audience in one of Europe’s leading art spaces- Saatchi Gallery.’

The performances will coincide with Saatchi Gallery’s Art Riot: Post Soviet Actionism exhibition, and the anniversary of the Russian Revolution, which happened 100 years ago. Because of this, audiences are encouraged to pull on the balaclava, just like the brave Pussy Riot women.

Performance dates are from Tuesday 14th November to Sunday 24th December 2017 at the Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York’s HQ, King’s Road, London SW3 4RY. Box Office Tickets are available from https://www.seetickets.com/ on Wednesday 27th September, priced from £21.50, and check their website for any other information: Inside Pussy Riot.

More than ever, ‘We are all Pussy Riot’.

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