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Per Henrik Svalastog
Bo Krister Wallström
Baktruppen is a theatre and performance group that act as an art collective with no hierarchical structure. Their work fall somewhere between conceptual art, minimalism and multimedia - and contain elements of noise. They are perhaps the only truly international theatrical success from Norway.
The collective formed in 1986 in Bergen. Their expressed goal has been to realize a theatre based on equality, both in terms of dramaturgy, scenic effects and actual work process. Over the span of twenty years they have been performing at Europe’s most important theatres and find themselves often compared to the highly acclaimed New York-based Wooster Group. In Germany they have achieved some sort of cult status (ever since they set up a shop outside the Berlin Wall in 1989) and in Holland they have been teaching classes at DASARTS - the theatre academy in Amsterdam.
Baktruppen consider frank, straightforward and respectful dialog the best means of communication. These values are keys to the sustainable impact of their work, as encounters between the group and their audiences are often brief and temporary.
However, their performances are not a reaction to theatre conventions (an ideology that drove the avant-garde scene of the 60s and 70s). Instead Baktruppen treat tradition with lightness and a carefree audacity. Therein lays perhaps their true craft.
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