“This creation, based on the homonymous film by Swiss filmmaker Xavier Koller , tells the story of a Kurdish family who abandons their land and their own to reach paradise: Switzerland. A paradise which, like a mirage, fades more and more with each step and which ends up disappearing forever in a snowstorm. In filigree, behind individuals, we distinguish history with a capital H: that of the fracture between the worlds, that of bureaucracy, that of the exploitation or the goodwill of some by or for the others. Once their roots are cut, the family plunges into a ferocious world where human and natural forces will end up shattering all their hopes. After losing their past by leaving their land, father and mother will lose their future by losing their son.

What to say and do in Geneva, city of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, yesterday and today? 30 years after the success of Voyage to Hope on the night of the Oscars, where he even preceded the favorite Cyrano de Bergerac, and won the only Academy Award (for best foreign film) obtained by a Swiss feature film, the subject of the film is still just as hot. Migrants populate the media but also the scenes, and then especially the seas and the centers of asylum seekers. The son of this Kurdish family is not the only child stranded dead on the border reefs. 30 years ago, it was the mountain that sealed destinies. Today, it seems to be the sea. For those who do not have to make the trip, however, it is only a parable.

Who is more apt to stage this new opera than Kornél Mundruczó , the Hungarian theater man and director of the films Jupiter’s Moon or Underdog (Feher isten)Who walks the European stages with projects with new social and theatrical dimensions, at the interstice of reality and its representation? Because it is not only a story, he reminds us: it is the daily life of all those who have left their country by force, of all those who are waiting to be someone again, those who are landless beneath their feet and country in their dreams have nothing but paradise lost in their eyes.

Photo credit: Carole Parodi