Matthieu Ehrlacher

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At a conference in 2012, Peggy Phelan stated that, “in all of Beckett’s plays, the difficulty of moving – physically, amorously, philosophically – forms the dramatic kernel of the plot.” Matthieu Ehrlacher’s Cocoon immediately establishes a relationship of immobility and expectation between the set and the body, which together pose the question: what can happen now? The body embodies the set while also being inside it, seeking a path to amplification in the slightest movement. The weirdness of this object that moves, talks, stops, looks, and listens, guides the audience’s gaze through an ever-changing voyage filled with details and levels of intensity. An animate and inanimate object, with a personality, through which a relationship is established between the absurdity of an impossible situation and the confrontation of mechanisms of action in theatre.


Matthieu Ehrlacher Creator and performer
Tiago Gandra Lighting, set design and artistic assistance
João Bento Sound design
Catarina Gonçalves Costume support (creation)
Bernardo Chatillon Costume support (tour)
O Rumo do Fumo Production
Teatro da Garagem Host company

Câmara Municipal de Lisboa/Pólo Cultural Gaivotas,  Casa da Dança, Causas Comuns, Companhia Olga Roriz, Eira, Forum Dança, Maria Matos Teatro Municipal, Teatro do Eléctrico, Teatro da Garagem – Teatro Taborda

Andresa Soares, Antonieta Lopes, Beatriz Simões Henriques, Cátia Leitão (Alface), Filipe Caldeira, Francisca Manuel, João Ferro Martins, Lara Boticario, Luis Gandra, Melissa Ehrlacher, Sezen Tonguz, Teresa Silva, Urândia Aragão 

O Rumo do Fumo is financed by the Portuguese Republic | Culture / Directorate-General of the Arts

Cocoon received the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation grant for artistic creation in 2016.
Premiere: 29 April 2017, Cycle Try Better, Fail Better’17, Teatro Taborda, Lisbon.

Matthieu Ehrlacher (Figeac, França, 1984) moved to Portugal in 1989. He studied music at the Jazz School Luiz Villas-Boas between 2004 and 2009. From 2010 and 2012, he attended the Choreographic Creation, Dance Research and Training Programme at Forum Dança. He has created several pieces both solo and collectively and was supported by O Rumo do Fumo from 2013 to 2017. As a musician, he has played with several bands and developed his solo musical project with saxophones, performing with the band dUASsEMIcoLCHEIASiNVERTIDAS and in a music duo with Tânia Carvalho.


Throughout two long weekends, dance returns to the auditoriums of the Foundation with the performance of two dozen works created over recent years with support from the Gulbenkian and with some making their very first appearance in Portugal. Program selection under the curatorship of João dos Santos Martins.


The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation reserves the right to collect and keep records of images, sounds and voice for the diffusion and collective preservation of the memory of its cultural and artistic activity. For further information, please contact us at [email protected].


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