Baktruppen

Also known asBYFTC - Baktruppen Your Favourite Theatre Company
Organisation typeArtist company
Main focusPerformance, Multidisciplinary art, Theatre
Established1986 (closed 1 Mar. 2011)
Emailbaktruppen@baktruppen.org
WebsiteBaktruppen, Baktruppen YouTube

About Baktruppen

Baktruppen was established as an artist collective in 1986. The company ceased its activity March 1 2011 after 25 years of working. Baktruppen’s artistic production was varied indeed: included in its various interdisciplinary arts were actions, lectures, performance, dance performances, theatre performances and concerts. When the company ceased to exist, it delivered its archive (1986-2011) to The National Library of Norway after digitalisation by Sceneweb.

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More about Baktruppen

Baktruppen's performances were distinctly characterised by being created collectively. They were often filled with humour and surprising ideas and the scenic effects were equal partners. Baktruppen operated interdisciplinary, and the performances did show a playful attitude within several art fields. Even though all productions carried the distinct signature of Baktruppen, Baktruppen had a versatility leading to versatile scenic expressions. The different backgrounds and attitudes of the members were conditions for the versatile form. All together they filled the functions in a theatre company: They were actors, composers, writers, visual artists, stage designers and stage technicians. Baktruppen wrote new plays and worked with readily written texts by others.

The first performance of Baktruppen Yes, I Go over to the Dogs (1987) was built on Jens Bjørneboe's books Moment of Freedom and Without a Stitch. Baktruppen also attacked Ibsen with its own versions of Brand called Everything (1988) and five interpretations of Peer Gynt in Peer, you’re lying, yes! (1993). Baktruppen’s versions are very freely interpreted and made more up to date. Baktruppen's international breakthrough came with Heiner Müller's Germania Tod in Berlin 1989. After the breakthrough the actors have played at most European stages and the company has become one of the most successful in the Nordic countries. In 2003 Baktruppen received the award for performing arts by The Norwegian Association of Performing Arts/NAPA for the performance FunnySorryJesus.

The composition of Baktruppen was stable, apart from an important change in 1994/95, when Tone Avenstroup and Hans Petter Dahl left the company. Gurå Mathiesen left Baktruppen in 1999. Of the members at the time the company shut down, Øyvind Berg, Ingvild Holm, Jørgen Knudsen and Worm Winther had been members since the first production. Trine Falch Johannessen joined the company in 1988, Erik Balke and Bo Krister Wallström in 1989, Per Henrik Svalastog in 1999.

FUNNYSORRYJESUS by Baktruppen won the performing arts award of Performing Arts Hub Norway 2003. From the reason the board gave:

"Assisted by simple effects Baktruppen manages time and time again to initiate complex forming of opinions. Regularly we also allow ourselves to get impressed by the company's ability to renew itself, its ability to stay contemporary. The window performances in Dælenggata were utterly simple in expression: Somebody watches somebody do something - within a frame, in this case outside of a window. One could almost call it a trivial performance situation. Chances are this form could have remained trivial if it wasn't Baktruppen taking it in hand. Few artists in this country - if any at all - know as well as Baktruppen how to master the point zero of theatre in such a refined way as Baktruppen does."

Sources:

Avenstroup, Tone (2012). For, i eller imot. Norsk Shakespeare- og Teatertidsskrift, nr. 1/2012, s.81-82

Baktruppen, baktruppen.org, 05.09.2010, www.baktruppen.org

Baktruppens archive. Giver: Baktruppen. 04.03.2011