Atlas der abgelegenen Inseln (Atlas of Remote Islands)

What civilised man misses most on remote islands is music. So he concentrates on the natural rhythms and sounds: the rush of the waves, the crackle of the trees, the song of the wind, the noises made by animals and spirits. That is why for Swiss director and musician Thom Luz, the translation of stories from the isles is a matter of the heart. He allows spiritlike sounds to waft through the open three-storey stairwell of a former museum of local history, and persuades some of the dead from seafaring history to appear as barefoot apostles for Judith Schalansky’s “Atlas of Remote Islands”. To the peculiar strains of brass, strings and drums, these ships’ goblins whisper, breathe and murmur strange tales of treasure hunters, dreamers and defiers of death, who rounded the globe in the search of the virginal moment – until the atom bomb scuttled the desire for paradise and its music with a bang. This is a delicate show, quiet and at times invisible – and that’s what makes it a true theatrical treasure.