Command Performance 2010/11

Command Performance is an original operatic dance-theatre work featuring a traveling "GMO Troupe" that is invited to perform at a Special Secret Meeting of the G6 Nation Leaders on board a Corporate Super Yacht floating offshore in the Adriatic Sea in the year 2010/11.

  • Show description

    Written & directed by Paul Kirby
    Designed by Adriana Kelder
    Music composed by Ivan Marović

    Command Performance is a mask/puppet dance aerial operatic work featuring a traveling “Genetically-Modified-Orgasmic Troupe”, called The Arti-Choke Troupe, which is invited to perform at a Special Meeting of the G6. The members of this GMO Troupe are all “disguised 19th century freaks”; their bodies preserved by congenital fortune…some via implanted genes, some via transplanted genes. When the Troupe performs, they wear form-fitting body puppets presenting a stage persona of designer perfected homogenous character physiques. It is their universally celebrated, homogeneously replicated stage personas (Trans-Humans) that garnered the invitation for The Arti-Choke Troupe to perform at this secret meeting of the G6…on a Super-Yacht in a Marina Resort-Mecca somewhere in the Adriatic Sea Coast.

    The Members of this G6-GROUP meeting are contemporary global (fictional) personalities, each a celebrity power either: political, religious, or scientific. Each of our G6 characters is a virtual portrayal of their actual real beings, each embodied in a large facial cranium; all residing in a titanic & ex-organic, ominous & amorphous, omni-present & omni-prescient DEUS MACHINA. Inside each of our G6 Global VIP`s, resides a Real-ware Human-Being manipulator, called The Controller…a real live human who operates the informational lives of each G6 character myth.

    Command Performance is about choice…choice over the future…the future of our individual lives, and the future of the human species. The play asks what is going to be the guiding principle in our moral states, in our social relations…is it our own choice or is it a process of genetic selection to a standardized “ideal” of human biology and culture? Will our lives be governed by natural selection such as they have been for eons or will our lives be governed by controlled genetic & DNA selection? In ancient and recent times, we have reinforced our normalcy by putting freaks on a stage, allowing us, the audience, to embrace our ideals of corporeal equality…pushing the Frankensteins, the Calabans, the Elephant Men, the Siamese Twins, the Bearded Ladies into a social geography of Fasci-nation but not Our-nation.

    So what happens when this new generation of freaks becomes the norm…and the norm become the freaks?

    Show poster





    QQ: CEO of Bank Intel-Pharmaman
    EU-GIA: Minister of Euro Bio-Sustainability
    LORD DC: President of Global Virtuals
    TRIGH: Minister of China Defense Tech
    JP: Chief of the Vatican Holy Alliance
    VD: Director of Russian Eugenics Trust

    HUNAH: one half of congenital twin
    BRAEL: an albino court jester dancer
    KIYET: a bird-faced dancer aerialist
    ZEDA: a hunchback aerialist dancer
    DROMA: an elephant eared aerialist
    MEN in WHITE: Anti-Viral Operators



    “The social ceremony of the freak show sits at the crossroads of all systematic discourse-race and gender for example-that underpins sociopolitical subordination by representing difference as deviance.”
    FREAKERY by Rosemarie Thompson

    “Only a lunatic would want to be president…lunatics are created deliberately by those who wish to be presided over.”
    “Aqua Boy” Arturo in GEEK LOVE by Katherine Dunn


    “I liked your Caravan Stage show. I really liked the special effects. Director was great, grey but gold worthy. I wish you good luck on the tour.”
    Dina Pavlovic, Tivat, July 19, 2010

    “I saw you performence tonight in Tivat and i have to say that it blew my mind. Keep doing what you are doing because it’s really making a difference!”
    Milica Bijelovic, Tivat, July 17, 2010

    “You guys are really sick! (“Sick” is Croatian English slang for “very cool”).”
    Sonja, Tivat, July 17. 2010

    “We had the pleasure to observe the show in its production stage as we were neighbours for several months prior to the performance. What a great spectacle and huge effort by such a talented team of creative engineers and artists. Best wishes for the future.”
    Tim & Katie, S/Y Monty B. Tivat, July 17, 2010

    “Some people in this town may not understand this show. But I do! I think is sick! (Croatian English slang for “very cool”!)”
    Wilson, Ploce, August 4, 2010

    “When we got home from your show on Saturday night, my kids age 6 & 7 insisted that we see the show again on Sunday night. We did and we all loved it again. It was an excellent, excellent show. Please come again to Makarska.”
    Tonci, Cultural Co-ordinator, Makarska Tourism, August 9, 2010

    “I saw you in Trogir this summer and you were amazing!! Are you coming back next year?”
    Dalibora Trumbic, Trogir, August 1, 2010

    “Show was so beautiful, so strong. All of the people at Izola who saw the show, understood what you are saying and what you are doing. Keep going, do not stop!”
    Marko, Isola, September 5, 2010

    “A show that offers a wonderful atmosphere, fascinating history and admirable for the implementation: actors, singers, dancers, acrobats, backstage, lights, sound, music, director. Everything worked perfectly. And the audience appreciated with loud applause. And surely that will happen again in tonight’s repeat performance.

    Uno spettacolo suggestivo per l’atmosfera, affascinante per la storia e ammirevole per la realizzazione: attori, cantanti, ballerini, acrobati, backstager, luci, suono, musiche, regia. Tutto ha funzionato alla perfezione e a dimostrarlo è la reazione del pubblico che nei numerosi e rumorosi applausi ha accolto il messaggio della compagnia, applausi che sicuramente si ripeteranno nella replica di stasera.”
    Il Mandracchio, Izola, Slovenia, September 4, 2010

    “I was absolutely in awe with the fabulous rendition of “Command Performance” on the Amara Zee. Intelligent, moving, catching, and for sheer entertainment value it definitely stands out with anything in the entertainment world.”
    Roland Reichenbach, Cattolica, Italy, September 25, 2010



  • Itinerary 2010/11

    Caravan Stage Company, aboard its barge “Amara Zee”, performed in a number of seaside towns along the Adriatiac, Ionian, Tyrrhenian and southern Mediterranean Seas. Caravan winter quarters for 2011/12 will be Marina di Cala del Sole, Licata, Italy.






    30., 31.07.2010.




    07., 08.08.2010.




    13., 14.08.2010.














    Lignano Sabbiadoro






    14 & 15.06.2011






    San Benedetto del Tronto
    25 & 26.06.2011


    Marina dei Termoli


    Marina di Vieste
    13 & 15.07.2011


    23 & 24.07.2011




    29 & 30.07.2011
    04 & 05.08.2011


    Marina di Taranto
    11 & 12 & 13.08.2011


    Porto degli Argonauti


    Marina di Policoro


    20 & 22.08.2011










    Porto Empedocle


    Marina di Cala
    del Sole, Licata
    16 & 17.09.2011

  • Sponsors 2010/11

    The Caravan Stage would like to acknowledge the support of the following companies, whose contributions enable the Caravan’s continued success.

    The Davies Foundation 
    Sustaining Financial Support
    Safety equipment
    Theatrical sound equipment
    Akzo Nobel
    Sikkens (Cetol) products
    Barry Cordage
    Rigging Supplies
    Dometic Group
    Sealand marine sanitary supplies
    Filtration technology
    Gleistein Ropes
    Ropes for all applications
    Innovative electronics
    Industria Mole Abrasive
    Rigid abrasive discs
    Nautical charts and books
    Langman Ropes
    Quality ropes
    Led Lenser
    Focusable LED Flashlights
    Electronic products
    Welding experts
    Ship repairs
    Marina dei Cesari
    Port in Fano
    Software and hardware solutions
    Welding gas
    Connectors for A/V and industry
    Paint and wood care protection
    Diesel and gas engines
    Pixel Range
    LED luminaires
    Poly Flex 
    Motor mounts
    PPG Racor
    Filtration systems for engines
    Nautical anodes
    Rickmers Linie
    Heavy lift liner services
    Figure 53
    QLab – live show control software
    Sigma Coatings 
    High quality coatings and paint
    Ship Sealant Products
    Wood coatings
    Superfast Ferries
    Sea transport
    Contract fabrics
    Specialty Illumination lighting
    Boat products
    We Love Colors
    Fashion Hosiery
    Whale Pumps
    Water systems
  • Reviews

    These are the italian reviews of Command Performance Tour 2011.

    Vieste Review by Saderio Croce, Voice of Vieste, July 14, 2011

    A warm evening in Vieste with a southerly wind blowing long into the night did not prevent the Caravan Stage Company from winning applause from an attentive and curious audience at the Marina. Viewers found themselves in front of actors and singers performing on a stage far from ordinary and the only one of its kind in the world. The wooden vessel Amara Zee, is home to 22 members of the theatre company founded by director Paul Kirby in 1970. On Wednesday evening it was transformed into a giant stage, anchored at the pier with its enormous theatrical set just metres away from the audience. The effect is surreal since the dancers and performers move agilely between stage and aerial acrobatic choreography above the heads of the viewers.
    The goal of bringing this theatre to people is achieved through extraordinary efforts, such as the network of dedicated Americans and Canadians, many from the theatre world. Their contributions help sustain the work of these theatre makers by lending support in the form of their professional activities.

    The show was a success, and fortunately the weather conditions have persuaded the company to extend their stay at Vieste and do the show again on Friday evening 15th July, at the same pier at 21.30.
    In front of an audience made up of art lovers there were also many people who interrupted their usual evening stroll with an impromptu stop at the port, staying for fifteen or so unusual minutes. Perhaps they even put some money in the donations box, since the shows on this tour of Italy are self-financed.

    It is not easy for the company to put together a crew of professional technicians and first rate performers but the end result justifies the effort. How else could you bring a public to a standstill to watch a show focused on the controlling influence of companies that exploit genetic modification? Let alone using a musical show format comprised of songs, special effects and a narrative translated into Italian that runs at the side of the stage?
    The Italian public (more so than other European countries) is far removed from the culture of musicals. This show at the port, taken as a work in itself, could fit well onto a stage on Broadway, where the Caravan Stage Company has also worked. Melodrama or lyical opera are the Italian cultural equivalent , and tastes do not change in a day.

    So we can only wait for the evening of the 15th to revisit the dream world of visual and sonic magic of the only show in the world that is performed aboard a tall ship. The model for the vessel is from 1700 and was reconstructed faithfully to the original twenty years ago. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Serata calda con scirocco sino a notte fonda, ma questo non ha impedito alla Caravan Stage Company di raccogliere l’applauso di un pubblico attento e incuriosito al porto Marina di Vieste. Per la prima volta gli spettatori si sono trovati di fronte ad attori, cantanti e mimi con un palcoscenico fuori dal comune, unico al mondo.
    Il vascello di legno Amara Zee, dove vivono i 22 componenti della compagnia teatrale fondata dal regista Kirby nel 1970, e diventato mercoledi sera un gigantesco palcoscenico, ancorato con le sue enormi scenografie al molo, a pochi metri di distanza dal pubblico.

    Un effetto surreale, visto che danzatori e mimi si muovevano con agilita tra passerelle e coreografie acrobatiche proprio sulla testa di chi li stava ad ammirare. Lo scopo di avvicinare il teatro al pubblico e fisicamente riuscito oltre ogni piu rosea aspettativa, com’e nelle speranze del network di appassionati canadesi e americani di teatro che finanziano il lavoro di attori che prestano la loro attivita professionale in maniera di fatto gratuita.
    Quanto allo spettacolo e presto detto. Il successo e le condizioni meteo hanno convinto la compagnia a prolungare il soggiorno a Vieste e visti i buoni replicare a fare il bis con lo spettacolo di venerdi sera, 15 luglio, sempre allo stesso molo del porto alle 21.30.

    A fronte di un pubblico fatto di appassionati ci sono stati anche centinaia di curiosi che hanno allungato la passeggiata serale lungo un itinerario inconsueto, quello del porto nuovo per l’appunto, e che si sono fermati per un quarto d’ora diverso dal solito, magari mettendo qualche moneta nella cassetta delle offerte, visto che gli spettacoli della tournee italiana sono autofinanziati.

    Non e facile per la compagnia riuscire a fondere personale tecnico e personaggi da prima fila in palcoscenico ma i risultati hanno premiato gli sforzi. In che altro modo senno si sarebbe potuta fermare la gente ad assistere uno spettacolo tutto centrato contro la dittatura delle compagnie che speculano sugli Ogm? Per giunta usando un musicale fatto di canzoni, musiche, effetti speciali e un testo tradotto in italiano che scorreva a fianco del palco?
    Il pubblico italiano (piu di quello europeo) e lontano dalla cultura del musical. Lo spettacolo al porto, preso come lavoro a se stante, farebbe un’ottima figura nei teatro di Bradway, dove la Caravan Stage Company ha pure lavorato. Ma la radice culturale italiana di questa miscela si chiama melodramma e opera lirica e i gusti non si cambiano in un giorno. Non resta dunque che aspettare la sera del 15 per tornare a sognare con le magie visive e sonore dell’unico spettacolo al mondo che viene recitato a bordo di un vascello. Dimenticavamo: il modello e del 1700 ma e stato costruito nuovo di zecca e fedele all’originale giusto vent’anni fa. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Monopoli Review by Nico Giuliani, Monopoli Live, July 28, 2011

    The port of Monopoli was flooded with spectators and awash with a fantasy of colour, music and acrobatic feats! Caravan Stage Company’s show is a mid-summer cocktail, caught somewhere between a musical, physical theatre and a political work with diversions into the world of visual arts. It breaths reflective ripples of ‘critical thought’ over the audience.


    The theme is of an ongoing capitalist crisis, seen through the eyes of six speaking puppet heads that symbolise a clique of state leaders. In a world grotesquely dominated by powerful figures without scruples, they try to obtain world domination through genetic science and a systematic control of the masses. An intriguing set, live original music and acrobatic performers pull the audience in to confront a very human condition: being carried along by homogenization’s currents of conformity.

    This triumph of experimental theatre from director Paul Kirby, his partner Adriana Kelder and the whole troupe, received the sweet welcome that Ports reserve only for true adventurers. At first the viewers were puzzled, but certainly enjoyed the offering of political entertainment from these theatre makers. They left the following morning, this time with Brindisi as their next port of call. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Una fantasia di musica, colori ed evoluzioni acrobatiche in un bagno di folla al porto di Monopoli. Lo spettacolo presentato dalla Caravan Stage Company, cocktail di mezza estate sospeso fra musical, teatro di figura e impegno politico con incursioni nel mondo delle arti visuali ha soffiato riflessioni di “pensiero critico” sugli spettatori.


    Il tema della crisi costante del capitalismo attraverso gli occhioni delle sei maschere parlanti, simbolo delle lobby di potere mondiali, in un mondo grottesco dominato da potenti senza scrupoli che tentano di raggiungere il dominio totale attraverso l’eugenetica e il controllo sistematico delle masse. Scenografie intriganti, musiche dal vivo e attori saltimbanchi pronti a coinvolgere il pubblico sui sintomi umani delle derive conformiste imputate di omologazione.


    Il trionfo del teatro sperimentale del comandante Paul Kirby, della suacompagna Adriana Kelder e di tutta la troupe, in quella dolce accoglienza che solo i porti sanno riservare agli avventurieri. Il pubblico, all’inizio un po’ spiazzato, ha certamente gradito l’opportunita di svago politico offerta dai teatranti che sono ripartiti in mattinata alla vota di Brindisi, loro prossima tappa.REVIEW

    Catania Review by Graziella Pulverenti, La Sicilia newspaper, September 3, 2011

    A show on the deck of a Tall Ship reminds us that “love conquers all”. Applause at the port for Caravan Stage Company’s show on a theatre-ship!

    Actors, musicians, singers and acrobats perform aboard a Tall Ship in a totally unique show, while viewers are astounded by special effects and illusions. This is Command Performance, presented on Thursday evening by Banchina 19 along with the cast and crew of Caravan Stage Company at the port of Catania. This theatre company tours the world on a 30m Tall Ship called the Amara Zee. It is a vessel intended for the river Thames, based on an original from the 1800s and reconstructed in the 1990s. The audience enjoyed the idea of a theatre-ship and applauded many times during the performance.

    The performance space is installed on the deck, here a theatrical representation of the globalized world deciding the direction of humanity is staged. The story is about a group of genetically empowered humans (genetically modified orgasmic beings or GMOs) who perform at a meeting of the G6, held on a yacht in the middle of the Adriatic Sea. These creatures are bodies under experimentation, and a gimmick to focus the attention of the G6 to a particular issue: the eradication of deformity, and formation of perfect super humans. The performance is intended to showcase the advances and developments within genetic engineering on the human race. Every defect, every distortion and all diversity can be elliminated. But then something goes wrong, one of the enhanced humans falls from the sky and crisis ensues. Could these prototypes compete with normal humans, perhaps even replace them? Will the super humans seize a position of power? Or will they take back their real lives? Are these questions without answers? No, at least in the opinion of Caravan Stage Company. The show’s main theme is that humanity can be helped in the search for justice, this path is the power of love, this will save us.


    Written and directed by Paul Kirby, designed and produced by Adriana Kelder, Command Performance is a conceptual harbour, a port in which to moor the illusions of civilization, consumerism and power. We witness a perfect world which does not accept diversity and doesn’t even want it to exist; anomalies are destroyed, humans are considered individuals but then are assembled like parts in a machine. This is Caravan Stage’s message of protest: do not excuse the great powers of the world from their responsibility, whether from political, economic or religious sectors. We are invited to reclaim the future of our planet. During any crisis, including economic or monetary collapse, or in the face of illness, pain and old age the ruling authority and the culture of power has its own remedy: “We guarantee you a powerful potion, ” they promise, “Eternal life; It’s your wish and ours.”

    ‘The idea of performing on a ship’, remembers Paul Kirby,’ came to me when I was working in Canada. My goal was to bring theatre to places wherever there are people, and I wanted an original and innovative way to do it. At first I started with horse drawn wagons, but I soon got tired of saddling horses every evening! In 1997 I got a new idea: we moved onto the boat and from there we started to travel the world. The boat is like the Pied Piper, it wins people over, fascinating them and pulling them into an enchanted world where theatre is the means. It allows us to bring theatre to everyday places where there are naturally spectators, like the quay of a port.”


    At first the company journeyed in the New World, across the USA and Canada. Then from 2005 they opted for the ports of Europe. This year a tour of Italy and Sicily was organised. There are twenty five members of the crew; many of them perform in the show, including international artists from the world of circus. The evocative, original music composed by Ivan Marovic makes up an extraordinary sonic base for this piece which could define itself as a musical opera. Accompanying the score are aerial choreographies by Raquel Nicoletti and movement choreography by Daniel Wild. In the tradition of Commedia dell’arte the show is free and, at the end, if the public enjoyed the show they can make donations. Caravan Stage Company is a project born from two non-profit associations in Canada and the USA, their artwork is entirely self-financed and they often accept contributions of many types. In our port they received fish and other practical hand-outs. This could be because theatre belongs to the people, and the people appreciate that. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Uno show sul ponte di un veliero perche vinca la “forza dell’amore”. Applaudito spettacolo nella banchina nel porto della nave teatro!

    Uno spettacolo unico al mondo in cui acrobati , musicisti, cantanti e attori si esibiscono a bordo di una nave sbalordendo con effetti speciali e illusioni. E’ questo Command Performance lo show proposto giovedi sera nella banchina 19 nel porto di Catania dal cast di “Caravan Stage” una compagnia teatrale che gira il mondo a bordo di un veliero di 30 metri “L’Amara Zee” , un vascello da fiume realizzato negli anni 70, riproduzione di un originale che nell’ottocento attraversava le acque del Tamigi. Il pubblico ha apprezzato l’idea di una “nave teatro” applaudendo molte volte durante la performance. Sul palco, allestito sul ponte del veliero e stata messa in scena la rappresentazione del mondo globalizzato, quella parte di mondo che decide il destino dell’umanita.


    Questo lo show: un gruppo di esseri geneticamente potenziati, la OGM “Organismi Geneticamente Modificati” Troupe si esibisce durante un meeting del G6 che si tiene a bordo di un super yacht in viaggio nel mare Adriatico. Gli esseri sono rappresentati come corpi in provetta una copertura per attirare l’attenzione dei membri del G6. Il loro e un messaggio di perfezione, di annullamento delle anomalie, di trasformazione in “super umani”. L’Esibizione vuole dare prova di progresso e dei miglioramenti effettuati dall’ingegneria genetica sulla razza umana che ha eliminato ogni difetto e ogni distorta diversita.


    Ma qualcosa va storto: uno degli esseri dotati di corpi superumani cade dal trapezio e il sistema entra in crisi. Potranno questi prototipi competere con i normali esseri umani e magari sostituirli, oppure saranno loro gli esseri extra ordinari ad avere il potere? O saranno invece gli esseri umani a vivere la vera vita? Sono interrogativi senza risposta? No, almeno secondo la “Caravan Stage” che veicola il motivo conduttore dello spettacolo, si puo aiutare l’umanita nella ricerca che porta alla via della giustizia questa via e la forza dell’amore, questa salvera. Scritto e diretto da Paul Kirby, progettato e prodotto da Adrian Kelder, “Command Performance” e come un approdo, un portone nel quale portare le illusioni della civilta del potere e del consumismo. Un mondo perfetto che non accetta le diversita e non vuole che esistano , che distrugge le anomalie del progetto uomo , che considera le persone come individui ma li assembla come pezzi di un ingranaggio.

    Un messaggio di denuncia quello della Caravan Stage che non risparmia i potenti del mondo a qualsiasi colore politico, economico e anche religioso appartengano. Un invito a riappropriarci del futuro del pianeta di fronte alla malattia, al dolore e alla vecchiaia. La cultura del potere ha le sue ricette:” Vi assicuriamo una pozione potente – dicono – in vita eterna. Il vostro volere e il nostro”. L’idea di recitare su una nave, ricorda Paul Kirby, mi venne quando lavoravo in Canada. La mia esigenza era di portare il teatro nei posti dove era la gente e mi serviva un mezzo innovativo e originale. In una prima fase cominciai con una “Carovana” a cavallo ma ben presto mi stancai di sellare i cavalli ogni sera. Nel 97 l’idea , ci siamo trasferiti su una barca e da allora viaggio per il mondo.

    La barca e come un flauto magico che irretisce e conquista, incuriosisce e attrae verso un mondo incantato dove il teatro diventa il mezzo per portare il teatro al pubblico, nei luoghi del quotidiano, come e la banchina di un porto. Dapprima la compagnia ha viaggiato nel Nuovo Mondo, Stati Uniti e Canada; poi dal 2005 ha scelto i porti dell’Europa e quest’anno ha organizzato un Tour in Italia e in Sicilia. Venticinque i membri dell’equipaggio, artisti internazionali del mondo del circo. Le suggestive musiche originali composte da Ivan Marovic formano una straordinaria base sonora di quello che potrebbe definirsi un musical a cui si accompagnano in coreografie acrobatiche di Raquel Nicoletti e quelle non Acrobatiche di Daniel Wild.


    Come usanza delle compagnie della commedia dell’arte gli spettacoli sono gratuiti (la Caravan Stage e un progetto nato da un’associazione senza scopo di lucro del Canada e degli USA, ma in conclusione , se lo spettacolo e stato gradito, il pubblico puo fare un offerta libera). La loro arte e del tutto autofinanziata, si accettano anche donazioni. Cosi nel nostro porto hanno ricevuto pesce e altri generi di utilita. Perche il teatro e della gente e il pubblico ha gradito. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Scoglitti Review by Daniela Citino, La Sicilia newspaper, September 9, 2011

    The Six Faces of Fallen Powers
    A Poetic and dreamlike theatre work from Caravan Stage Company performed aboard the Tall Ship Amara Zee, founded, directed and written by captain Paul Kirby and his wife Adriana Kelder.


    In the town of Vittoria power is a monster with six heads, a strange Cerberus of animalesque and voluptuous ambition, aspiring to world domination. Alas, he is succeeding. But the monster is about to be demolished, that is certain. The monster will be beaten. The six heads will tumble one by one, like a game of dominos. And one after the other, they will come down. For even if the new Cerberus has six jaws, it is a monster made from papier-mache.

    The defeat is trickery. The papier-mache monster crumbles like the illusory dream of freedom which is ‘carried’ over the waves of the sea by this theatre-ship, docked at the port of Scoglitti on the evening of September 7th. ‘Let’s voyage together’ the mummers invite us. And so the journey begins with the show Command Performance. It is a rousing and symbolic journey of art through a philosophical and conceptual tale against world powers, the great orchestrators of the human cosmos, the annihilators of human life.


    It is a melancholic, but at the same time sarcastic, ironic and joyous story of love for the underdog, who are considered here as the wrecks and waste of humanity by superior beings. A poetic and dream-like piece of theatre brought to life aboard the ship Amara Zee by Caravan Stage Company. It was founded by director, Captain and author Paul Kirby, and his wife Adriana Kelder, who is designer and producer of Command Performance. Since ancient times – the authors tell us- we have reinforced our normality by putting freaks on stage, deformities such as Frankinstein, The Elephant Man, the bearded lady.

    These jokes of nature are reserved a special place in the margins of our curiosity, but never in our nations. What would happen if the freaks were transformed into genetically modified creatures, becoming a generation of super men and women? The vision becomes reality. What does it matter that that reality is only for an hour and a quarter and it exists only aboard the Amara Zee? On the Tall Ship, the journey is a metaphorical one on the sea of literature, and it’s possible to return again and again to the point of departure because in the word of the poet Mallarme, ” un livre ne commence ni ne finit, il continue”.


    On the Amara Zee super humans are made from a collection of freaks: a hunchback acrobat, a deaf elephant, an aboriginal born with legs on his head, a bird-man, the two halves of Siamese twins, and an albino court jester. The spectators ‘fly’ with the freaks, gazing upwards, twirling in the star filled sky on a moonlight night that leaves reflections on the port of the coastal hamlet. We recall the lines of Shakespeare, We are such stuff as dreams are made on.


    The dream turns to Utopia. The freaks are no longer deformed, they have become a form of super humanity. They were created by that same six headed monster, symbolising world powers, and they will end up rebelling and winning. The illustrious figures are reduced to ‘normal’ in comparison to their creation, and they prefer to die in order to fly high just like them. So the heads fall. The theatrical game is revealed.

    Behind the set of the ship-theatre which has a decisively grandiose scenic system, is an endless supply of craftsmen at work: from sound engineers, to costumiers, riggers, set installers and puppet operators. This world of art has been sailing the seas for fourteen years, though at the start, Paul Kirby and his wife Adriana Kelder travelled by horse drawn wagon and performed in a tent. Now these theatre nomads, dream makers, sail the waterways of North America, Europe and soon Africa.


    Giuseppe Nicosia, the mayor of Vittoria commented “Thank you for this gift – an artistic dream which is surely unique, capable of both enchanting children and making adults reflect.” Command Performance was the closing event of Open Village 2011 and a farewell to the summer. Italians amongst the performers are Elise Briccolani, Doria Bramante, Bruno Barone, Fabio Constantino, and Rachele Porto. Licata is the last destination in Sicily for the theatre-ship and Paul says ‘Anybody interested could take one of the six heads home with them”. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Vittoria. Il potere e un mostro a sei teste. Uno strano Cerbero dale animalesche e ambiziose volutta che aspira al dominio del mondo. Aime, riuscendovi. Ma il mostro sta per essere abbattuto. Anzi. Questa e una certezza. Il mostro verra sconfitto. Le sei teste ad una ad una come dentro un gioco degli specchi. E una dopo l’altra, le teste vengono giu: Solo che il novello Cerbero a sei fauci e un mostro semplicemente fatto di cartapesta.


    La sua sconfitta e una magia. Un mostro di cartapesta che si sbriciola come l’illusoriosogno di liberta che, “portato” sulle onde del mare della nave-teatro, e approdato la sera del 7 settembre nel porto di Scoglitti. “Salpiamo insieme” invitano i guitti. E sia. Il viaggio inizia. Comincia la Command Performance. Entusiasmante e simbolico “viaggio” d’arte dentro una favola filosofica ed insieme concettuale contro i potenti del mondo, i grandi manovratori degli universi umani, gli annientatori di vita umana. Una malinconica ed insieme sarcastica, ironica e gioiosa storia d’amore per l’umanita minore, considerate, invece, dall’umanit{ superiore come relitto e scarto. Una poetica e sognante piece teatrale portata sulla scena dalla nave Amarazee dalla compagnia Caravan Stage, fondata e diretta dal capitano-regista e anche autore dello spettacolo, Paul Kirby e dalla moglie Adriana Kelder che della Command Performance, e anche progettista e produttrice.


    “Fin dai tempi antichi- dicono gli autori- abbiamo rafforzato la nostra normalita mettendo sulla scena I freaks, ovvero gli scherzi della natura, come Frankestein, l’Uomo Elefante, la Donna Barbuta. Scherzi della natura confinati ai margini della nostra fascinazione ma mai della nostra nazione. Ma cosa accadrebbe se invece I freaks fossero trasformati in creature geneticamente modificate diventando una super generazione di uomini e donne?”. Il sogno diventa realta. Ma che importa se e solo per un’ora e un quarto e si puo vivere solo sulla Amarazee. Sulla nave-vascello, come ci ricorda il poeta Mallarme, sua e la metafora del viaggio nei mari della letteratura, e possible ritornare continuamente alla meta perche “un livre ne commence ni ne finit, il continue”. Su Amarazee I freaks, un acrobata gobbo, un elefante sordo, un aborigeno nato con gambe sulla testa, un uomo Uccello, le due met{della coppia di gemelli siamesi, un giullare di corte albino rosa, diventano superuomini. E tutti conil naso all’insu “voliamo” insieme ai freaks, che volteggiano sul cielo stellato di una notte che lascia i riflessi blu sul porto del borghetto costiero. Noi siamo fatti della stessa material dei sogni, ci ricorda Shakespeare.


    Il sogno diventa utopia. I freaks non piu deformi, ormai diventati una super umanita creata dallo stesso mostro a sei teste, simboli dei potenti del mondo, finiranno per ribellarsi e per vincere. I grandi del mondo “ridotti” a normali, preferiranno morire per volare in alto come loro. Le teste cosi crollano. Il gioco teatrale sis vela. Dietro le quinte della nave-teatro un impianto scenico decisamente grandioso e un’infinita di maestranze al lavoro: dagli ingegneri del suono ai costumisti, ai responsabili della sicurezza degli acrobati, alle scenografie, agli operatori delle marionette.


    Un mondo d’arte che “salpa” dab en quattordici anni anche se, all’inizio, Paul Kirby e sua moglie Adriana Kelder, viaggiavano su carri trainati da cavalli e si esibivano in un tendone. Ora questi nomadi dell’arte, creatori di sogni, navigano lungo le rotte del Nord America, dell’Europa e presto salperanno per l’Africa. “Grazie per averci regalato un sogno artistico sicuramente unico capace di stregare I bambini e fare rifletter gli adulti” comment ail sindaco di Vittoria Giuseppe Nicosia salutando cosi “l addio” all’estate dell’Open Village 2011 essendo stato “Command Performance” lo spettacolo di commiato. Tra i performance anche gli italiani Elise Briccolani, Doria Bramante, Bruno Barone, Fabio Costantino, Rachele Porto. Ultimo appuntamento siciliano per la nave- teatro e con il porto di Licata. “Chi vorra- dice Paul Kirby- potra portarsi a casa una delle sei teste”. SOURCE: REVIEW

    Individual Comments on the Caravan Facebook page

    SHERRY MARX, Pesaro, June 20, 2011
    I’m full of admiration for you and this way of life, based on the concrete pursuit of ideals, with all the joys and hassles that brings. The unpretentiousness and genuineness of your work is all the more striking in this day and age, when banks and corporations and power politics and fanatics of all kinds seem to have an ever-tightening grip on our shrinking planet.

    SILVANO STAFFOLANI, Ancona, June 23, 2011
    Beautiful show yesterday at Marina Dorica! Thank you!

    ROSS VESI, San Benedetto Del Tronto, July 1, 2011
    GO GUYS!!!

    ANNARITA PALMA, Termoli, Italy, July 12, 2011
    I have wonderful memories of your show in Termoli. Your strong and deep message with your art and sensibility is extraordinary beauty. Your song is very similar to the magic song of the Sirens to Ulysses.

    CASSANDRA MANZARI, Monopoli, July 27, 2011
    Very Good!

    STEFANO RAGUSO, Monopoli, July 28, 2011
    Congratulations for your performance in Monopoli

    BRUNO GUERRA, Brindisi, August 8, 2011
    Me and my wife do appreciate “Caravan stage” efforts to bring theatre and so much happiness all over the world.

    RAFFA ELLA, Brindisi, August 9, 2011
    Very Good!

    MARCELLO NITTI, Taranto, August 12, 2011
    Thank you for your great performance yesterday in Taranto!

    MARCO SANSALONE, Crotone, August 21, 2011
    Great show in Crotone!!!! Thank you so much!

    MARVI SANTAMARIA, Porto Empedocle, September 11, 2011
    I saw your show yesterday in Porto Empedocle. It touched me so much. Your show is really meaningful. The message you bring around the word is so disruptive and wants to open hearts and minds. I wish you luck spreading the seeds in the cities you travel to, and one day those seeds will grow and finally bring the … “decapitation of the heads”… by the means of an insane flight.

    GIANFRANCO CERNIGLA, Licata, September 18, 2011
    Spectacular Show…congratulations!!!!

    MARTA MAGGIO, Licata, September 19, 2011
    Hello, I saw the show in Licata. You were fantastic, very good! Was a great feeling and I thank you for this.

    Sono pieno di ammirazione per voi e per questo modo di vita, basato sulla ricerca concreta d’ideali, con tutte le gioie e complicazioni che questo comporta. La modestia e la genuinita del vostro lavoro e molto piu impressionante in questi tempi, quando le banche e le corporazione ed il poter politico e fanatici di ogni genere sembrano d’avere sempre una presa piu stretta sul nostro piccolo mondo.

    Bellissimo spettacolo ieri a Marina Dorica! Grazie!

    FORZA RAGAZZI!!!!!!!!

    Ho dei bellissimi ricordi del vostro spettacolo a Termoli. Il vostro messaggio forte e profondo con la sua arte e sensibilita e di straordinaria bellezza. Le vostre canzoni sono molto simili al canto magico delle sirene di Ulisse.

    Bravissimi! (Molto bene)

    Complimenti per la vostra performance a Monopoli

    Mia moglie ed io apprezziamo molto gli sforzi della “Caravan Stage”per portare il teatro e tanta felicita in tutto il mondo.

    Bravissimi! (Molto bene)

    Grazie per il vostro grande prestazione di ieri a Taranto!

    Grande il spettacolo in Crotone!!! Grazie mille!

    Ho visto il vostro show ieri sera a Porto Empedocle. Che dire… mi ha trasmesso davvero tanto. Pero devo aggiungere che secondo me i pubblici estivi delle coste siciliane non sono molto “ricettivi” in tal senso… il vostro spettacolo e molto “impegnato” e quindi anche molto “impegnativo”: lo spettatore medio potrebbe non capirlo a fondo o addirittura annoiarsi. E’ un peccato, perche il messaggio che voi portate in tutto il mondo e dirompente e vuole aprire i cuori e le menti. Vi auguro che il seme che andate disseminando qui e la nelle varie citta dia un giorno i suoi germogli e magari porti finalmente… alla “decapitazione dei capi”… per mezzo di un folle volo.

    Spettacolo “spettacoloso”……complimenti!!!!

    Ciao, ho visto lo spettacolo a licata. Siete stati fantastici, bravissimi! E stata un emozione grandissima e vi ringrazio per questo.

  • Photos

    Photo courtesy of Adriano Carbone, Despina Mavridou and Francesco Trucchia.