Roshanak Morrowatian - Rover / VIA ZUID

A meditative performance as an ode to refugee children

Choreographer Roshanak Morrowatian (Iran, 1989) presents her performance ‘Sister’ in the chapel of the Savelberg Monastery, formerly home to the Little Sisters of Saint Joseph. Their motto was ‘helping where nobody helps’. Sister’ responds to this motto by meditating on the fate of children in war zones and places of political and social unrest.

A life-size wax sculpture of a melting girl symbolises adaptability and the loss of childlike innocence. The transforming sculpture and the surrounding sound and videoscape make you turn inwards, towards a sense of solidarity with the millions of children around the world who are fleeing conflict or violence. They have left behind their homes, families and everything that was familiar.

Sister’ creates an intimate encounter with one girl, one child. It gives words like refugee and immigrant a face. Behind the beautiful smile lies a sea of trauma and loss, which requires tremendous malleability and transformative power to survive. Choreographically, this work explores the unpredictable movement quality of melting. Whereas our society seems to equate solidity with strength, melting allows for new forms every time.

Hide & Seek

The Savelbergklooster is also hosting the photo exhibition ‘Hide & Seek’ by visual artist Afagh Morrowatian, a collaboration between dance and photography. The exhibition encapsulates the longing for a home and for security from the displaced body of a child. Inspired by the themes of Roshanak Morrowatian’s dance performance ‘Kites’ and the performance ‘Sister’, Afagh Morrowatian uses the game of hide and seek as a concept and guiding principle for her photographs; hiding and seeking in order to survive.