Rabih Mroué is an internationally acclaimed performer, visual artist, director and playwright. Video and photography play a part in his investigation of the ways in which we express ourselves, and the ways in which we endeavour to capture history—for ourselves and for others. In this haunting piece he shares the stage with his brother Yasser, who was struck in the head by a bullet during Lebanon’s civil war and survived to tell the tale. While slowly recovering from his injuries, Yasser began to shoot videos. Here the footage joins with documents from a life: old photos, letters, school report cards. Using these indirect means Yasser paints a picture of existence in Lebanon, and its history as a fragile state.
What emerges is a meditation on memory, the alternatives to speech and the ways in which images can do much more than just document. Rabih has invited Yasser to play a man not himself, but like himself, and the interplay of fiction and documentary evidence is one of the most fascinating aspects of this performance. Powerful and provocative, this piece is the manifestation of brotherly love and the ties that hold under the weight of history. Riding on a Cloud lights up the mind as it moves the heart.
An accomplished piece of theatre, at once emotionally moving and bristling with intelligence.