Residentie: Magic Maids

Venuri Perera & Eisa Jocson / Frascati Producties
Fri 19 Apr ’24 and Sat 20 Apr ’24
A deepdive into the entanglements of the witch hunt in Europe and domestic work in the Global South.
Fri 19 Apr ’24
Sat 20 Apr ’24

For Magic Maids, choreographers Eisa Jocson and Venuri Perera delve into the European history of witch-hunts and the direct consequences of these for the exploitation of female labour. Particularly domestic labour in the Global South, as well as narratives around the persecution of migrant workers today. In Magic Maids, the broom is an axis that bridges European witch hunts and domestic labour through rituals of cleansing.

Both makers come from countries known for their export of domestic workers: Sri Lanka and the Philippines. During a residency in Basel, Switzerland, Venuri and Eisa delved into the rich history of the persecution of ‘witches’ in Europe. In their research, they not only discovered the consequences of European witch trials for the exploitation of female labour, but also that witchcraft is still used today as a tool for the subjugation and persecution of migrant workers in the Global South.

After previous residencies in Switzerland, Sri Lanka and the Philippines, among others, they continued their research during a residency period at Frascati Producties, which concludes with work-in-progress presentations on April 19 & 20. 

The performance Magic Maids will premiere during Spring Festival 2024.

About the makers

Venuri Perera is a choreographer, performance artist, curator and teacher from Colombo, Sri Lanka. In 2022, she graduated from DAS Theater in Amsterdam. Venuri investigates power dynamics when looking at ‘the other’ and in so doing attempts to destabilise how we see this ‘other’. Venuri’s solos and collaborations deal with violent nationalism, the patriarchy, border rituals, colonial legacies and class. Her work has been seen at festivals and biennales in Europe, South and East Asia, the Middle East and Africa.  

Eisa Jocson is a choreographer and dancer from the Philippines. She is recognised in many countries as one of the most charismatic choreographers of her generation. In her productions, Eisa probes the many ways in which workers from the Philippines are abused. In so doing, she always looks for pinpoints of light in these serious subjects, and exposes stereotypes about people from the Philippines, and communities in Southeast Asia in general. 

concept & performance Eisa Jocson and Venuri Perera production Künstler*innenhaus Mousonturm - Frankfurt am Main coproduction Frascati, HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Spring Festival Utrecht, Tanzquartier with support by colomboscope