Sayat Nova

The performance Sayat Nova interprets the eponymous film by Sergei Parajanov in a distinctive way using the elements of movement, visuality, and audio.

Visual intervention and dance:

Cristina Maldonado

Voice and performance:

Laureline Koenig

Sound intervention:

Marcus Beuter


60 min


Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, México*Grant Creadores con Trayectoria 2012-2014, FONCA, MOTUS o.s.,, Divadlo Na cucky (DW7 o.p.s.)

The story takes place in the 18th century Caucasus and recounts the life of Sayat Nova, one of the Armenian poets and singers who are called the "Ashiks." The film also thematizes Armenian culture, inspired by its ancient theater, Christian icons, and Islamic miniatures. Treatment of the story, the directors break with traditional biographical narrative ("I was attempting though the film medium to express the world of his poetry"), and his critique of conservative attitudes in some key moments in Armenian history aroused the opposition of the Soviet regime. The director was accused of "promoting eroticism and mysticism." The film was reedited (by the director of films about Lenin Sergei Yutkevich) and given a new title "The Color of Pomegranates." Even so it was banned until 1977.

This joint project of three artists of different nationalities it is the result of the multicultural influences long reflected in their work. Each of them has their own particular relationship to Armenian culture. In August of 2013 they met in Yerevan at an arts residency program. In interpreting the film each works with a different form of expression: Cristina Maldonado with images and movement, Laureline Koenig with voice and song, Marcus Beuter with sound and music.

The performance of Sayat Nova is part of the project WHAT SHE DOES, in which Cristina Maldonado recycles films and creates visual collages in real time.

Cristina Maldonado

Mexican artist whose background in dance and body movement contributes to her unique approach in her visual and conceptual experiments in video, sound, collage and performance, imparting them with a palpable tactility that not only evokes the audience sensually, but also leads them into a realm of comfort, and beyond. Her work unites experimental theater, dance, participatory art, new and old media.
Work of Cristina is mainly focused on the themes of the body, communication and intimacy. She creates different experiential frames like sound installations, phone performances, videos and objects, all of them connected with live action.
Since 2000 she has been directing and creating performances alone and in collaboration with artists from different disciplines and nationalities and presented her work throughout Mexico and Europe, in New York and Montreal.

Laureline Koenig

Born in France. She has been studying since her youth a variety of arts like contemporary dance, music, contemporary circus, and especially singing, in its traditional and contemporary forms. Since 1998 she has been training in storytelling with international storytellers and ethnologists. She focuses her work on the contemporary meanings and applications of oral literature, the questions of identities, traditions and transmission, working on crossing borders and limitations. Since 2006 she had the opportunity to work in France, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Romania, Iran and Germany.

Marcus Beuter

German autodidactic sound artist and composer of electro acoustic music. He has journeyed throughout Europe, Iran, Pakistan, Laos, Vietnam, India, Indonesia, Gambia, Senegal, USA, Georgia, and Armenia. In the heart of his work are field recordings, the acoustic relationship with the environment, the impact of environmental sounds on our everyday lives, but also brought out of this context, newly arranged and processed - this is one of his main focuses.
Beuter has made further travels as parts of interview projects concerning social issues and the reception of different cultures. He is a co-founder of fragmentrecordings. He is the author of sound installations, electroacoustic compositions, and free improvisations. He is member of Cooperativa Neue Musik and part of the head of DEGEM. He works regularly with various ensembles and collaborates with musicians and artists of different genres.

Supported by:
Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, México
*Grant Creadores con Trayectoria 2012-2014, FONCA
Na Cucky Theatre (DW7 o.p.s.)

Thanks to:

AKOS Residency, Armenia and to NPAK.