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A group of carers and domestic workers whose lives are dominated by the daily commute between the edges of the capital Lisbon and its centre; between their homes and the homes of their employers; between the countries in which they were born and Portugal, the country where they now live; between past and present, hope and longing. »Pêndulo« is an intimate, constantly moving search embarked upon together by the director Marco Martins and the ensemble. The protagonists and co-writers of this production are seven women who work as cleaners and carers. They all came to Portugal from its former colonies in Africa and Latin America.


What is the relationship between these immigrant workers and the families for whom they work—and for whom they have left their own homes in order to clean the houses of others? What kind of relationships do they form? What do the women think about on their way to work and back home again—that is, if they don’t fall asleep from exhaustion on the bus or train?
In situations that are simultaneously personal and dreamlike, they stand on stage and talk about their own and other people’s family relationships, the clash between different ways of life, places, expectations and daily routines. »Pêndulo« also traces the remnants of Portuguese colonialism in the present and creates a panorama of a society caught in the back-and-forth movement of the eponymous daily pendular movement of commuting. And everywhere there are the vestiges of a colonialism which, even more than half a century after its end, is deeply inscribed in people’s consciousness and unconscious.

With »Pêndulo«, director Marco Martins continues the artistic practice he has developed over several years which comprises intensive encounters with specific communities living on the urban peripheries. His longterm exchange with people who are not trained actors and their life stories forms the core of his award-winning productions and movies, which he has been realising since 2007 as part of the artistic platform »Arena Ensemble«.

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Additional information
Dates
April 2024
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