Robert Lepage
The library at night
As part of the 12th TERRITORIЯ International Festival and School of Modern Art with support of ROSIZO

Online registration required. Regular museum ticket grants the show attendance.Tickets are available online or at the museum
The library at night
Visitors to the exhibition will be subject to virtual immersion in the 10 existing and imaginary spaces of the present and the past, according to the laws of the theatre. The project uses 360° video technology (Samsung Gear VR headsets). The exhibition is organised as part of the 12th TERRITORIЯ International Festival and School of Modern Art with the support of ROSIZO

‘The Library at Night’ is a declaration of love for the most traditional institution of world culture, made with the latest visual technology. The library is not the scene but the main protagonist of this theatricalized exhibition, as visitors don a virtual reality helmet and depart on an imaginary journey. During the journey they are accompanied by a commentator and guide — Yevgeny Mironov, artistic director of the TERRITORIЯ Festival, acts as the ‘voice’ for the Russian version of the project.

Lepage dedicated ‘The Library at Night’ to the National Library of his native Quebec on its tenth anniversary, but what seemed at first sight a local anniversary gift soon became one of the world’s most popular touring projects from the last season.

The starting point of Lepage’s theatrical fantasy was the book of the same name by Canadian essayist Alberto Manguel. Where Manguel sees a pretext for philosophical and sociological reasoning, Lepage creates an extravaganza of virtual special effects with the most beautiful libraries of the world as participants: Sarajevo and Mexico, Alexandria and Washington, Copenhagen and Paris, the Middle Ages and the present. There are no boundaries to the director’s fantasy, which can just as easily set sail on Jules Verne’s fictional Nautilus or step inside a Buddhist temple, an ancient abbey or the US Congress.

At the end of the journey two encouraging conclusions remain. Firstly, that shelves filled with books endure as one of the most mysterious and enticing things on earth. And secondly, the digital era is not destroying libraries, but emphasizing the diversity of their forms and functions in the modern world: a real library could be anything: a political club, a secular salon, a museum, temple or university.

In total visitors to the exhibition will be subject to virtual immersion in 10 existing and imaginary spaces of the past and present. The project uses Video 360° technology (with a Samsung Gear VR headset).

Canadian Robert Lepage is one of the few true visionaries of contemporary theatre, an outstanding director whose performances present an organic combination of high art and hi-tech. As a universal artist he successfully works in drama theatre, opera, show business and experimental formats not only as director, but also as actor, playwright and scriptwriter. In 1994 Lepage founded the multi-disciplinary production company Ex Machina. Apart from drama performances the company has created several multimedia shows. Lepage’s work is well known and highly appreciated in Russia, and his productions have visited Moscow on tour several times. His Hamlet | Collage with Yevgeny Mironov in the leading role has been playing at the Theatre of Nations since 2013.

Director — Robert Lepage
Co-director and creative director — Steve Blanchet
Curator of the Russian version — Yevgeny Mironov
Author, designer and narrator — Alberto Manguel
Sound design — Jean-Sébastien Côté
Voice of the Russian-language version — Yevgeny Mironov
Voice of the English-language version — Steve Blanchet

Development and realisation of ‘The Library at Night’ project — Ex Machina production company

Original idea — Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec

Special Russian version organised jointly with the ROSIZO State Museum and Exhibition Centre and the Multimedia Art Museum for the TERRITORIЯ Festival
With the support of the Embassy of Canada in Russia

TERRITORIЯ International Festival and School of Modern Art has been held since 2006 with the support of the Culture Ministry of the RF and the Moscow City Department of Culture. The festival headquarters is the Theatre of Nations. The Moscow Museum of Modern Art acts as strategic partner.

The main aim of the TERRITORIЯ Festival and School has always been to unite theatre, dance, visual art and music professionals and create a spectacle that would acquaint viewers with the latest performance arts from diverse genres. TERRITORIЯ has revealed new talent for more than ten years with a presentation of avant-garde classics and experiments with form.

Yevgeny Mironov about the project


Attention! Online registration required. Regular museum ticket grants the show attendance.
Tickets are available online or at the museum (all benefits stand).

Duration of the show: 45 min
Maximum number of guests in a group: 14

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You will receive a letter to confirm registration. This letter must be shown
to the museum’s ticket office administrator when buying a ticket.

Unregistered visitors may visit the exhibit if seats are still available

TERRITORIЯ ROSIZO Embassy of Canada to Russia

With support

Carrera y Carrera

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The Art Newspaper Russia

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