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Tyngde – a film poem

Østfold International Theater is proud to present Tyngde – an audience experience at the crossroads between film, theater and concert!

Thomas Østbye’s brand new film is based on Demian Vitanza’s text of the same name, which won the Ibsen Prize in 2019. The text is musically arranged in an electroacoustic soundscape by Nils Martin Larsen and Bendik Hovik Kjeldsberg, who also play live on stage.

Powerful and personal

Tyngde depicts loneliness, illness, alienation, grief and longing for community – but also great love and belonging. Here, two stories are presented, both conveyed in a surprising and poetic perspective.

On the screen we see eleven year old Alva Vitanza from Halden and actor Terje Strømdahl. Strømdahl has a very personal relationship with the script, partly based on his conversations with Vitanza after his partner’s early death.

From text to stage to screen

The theater version of Tyngde was part of the original opening program for Østfold International Theater, which had to be canceled due to the corona pandemic. Instead, the theater became co-producers for the film, which was shot this spring and is now being presented to the public. We with you welcome to a very special movie experience!

Cast and crew

Producer, director and editor: Thomas Østbye
Scriptwriter: Demian Vitanza
Actors: Terje Strømdahl, Alva Vitanza
Composition and music: Nils Martin Larsen, Bendik Hovik Kjeldsberg
Director of photography: Marte Vold
Sound design: Gunn Tove Grønsberg
Line producers and coordinators: Cathrine Kielland and Anneli Sollie (Østfold International Theater)

Production: Demian Vitanza fiction and PlymSerafin.
Co-production: Østfold International Theater
Made possible with support from Østfold International Theater, as well as reallocated grant from Kulturrådet through Conerstone / Vik & Lie

Ahead of the film being made, a stage version of Tyngde was made, which was to be played in several places in Østfold in the spring of 2020, but which had to be canceled due to the corona pandemic. Credits stage version:
Director stage version: Simon Boberg
Scenography and graphic elements: Eirik Sæther
Lighting design, technical: Yasin Gyltepe
Dramaturge stage version: Elin Amundsen Grinaker
Producer stage version: Ingrid Hansen

Reviews:

«Filmversjonen av Vitanzas tekst er fullstendig til å miste pusten av […] Hver eneste levde erfaring formidles gjennom Terje Strømdahls ansikt og stemme på en måte som overgår alt jeg har sett på teaterscenen på en lang stund»

English translation: «The film version of Vitanza’s text completely takes your breath away. Every experience lived is conveyed through Terje Strømdahl’s face and voice in a way that surpasses anything I have seen on the theater stage in a long time »

Judith Dybenbdal, Scenekunst.no

«Demian Vitanza har åpenbart en særegen evne til å få folk til å åpne seg og by på historier som er viktige, både i kraft av det individuelle og det allmenngyldige. Terje Strømdahls dypt personlige inngang til materialet, i kombinasjon med det overordnede kunstneriske prosjektet, gjør dette til en sjelden forestilling.»

English translation: «Demian Vitanza obviously has a unique ability to make people open up and offer stories that are important, both by virtue of the individual and the universal. Terje Strømdahl’s deeply personal approach to the material, in combination with the overall artistic project, makes this a rare performance.»

Chris Eriksen, Scenekunst.no (about the stage version) 

«Tyngde setter seg i kroppen som en eksistensiell klo  (…) Dette er en kraftanstrengelse av dimensjoner.» 

English translation: «Tyngde settles in the body like an existential claw (…) This is an effort of dimensions.»

Victoria Kielland, Klassekampen (about the stage version)

«Jeg er blitt svært positivt overrasket – og dypt grepet – av Demian Vitanzas nyskrevne verk Tyngde. Tonesatt av Nils M. Larsen og Bendik Kjeldsberg og fremført av Terje Strømdahl og ti år gamle Oline Flæte Modalsli. Et fantastisk eksempel på hvor mye en god produksjon kan løfte et dramatisk verk.» 

English translation: «I have been very positively surprised – and deeply moved – by Demian Vitanza’s newly written work Tyngde. Music by Nils M. Larsen and Bendik Kjeldsberg and performed by Terje Strømdahl and ten year old Oline Flæte Modalsli. A fantastic example of how much a good production can help lift a dramatic work.»

Per Christian Selmer-Andersen, Aftenposten (about the stage version)

Press images:

Press images from the film Tyngde here

Terje Strømdahl in one of the scenes from Thomas Østbye’s film “Tyngde”. Photo: Marte Vold

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