Alien without extraordinary ability

Performance, 2023
A co-production with ↘︎ East Alien Company (Yumo Cheng, Yve Oh, Xiao Xiao).
Premiere: May 9th 2023, Berliner Ringtheater, Germany(APAL@Amnasia.6 residency).

Alien without Extraordinary Ability is a performance related to migration and labor practices: on different visa systems and how skills and abilities are being evaluated and calculated differently based on one’s assigned identity. The performance features a love story between aliens (as migrants) and aliens (as non-earthlings) fusion of dystopian science fiction, where intimacy, labor, nationalism, and diversity discourses were discussed in an absurd theatrical constellation.

This project is originally developed by artist, author and researcher Xiao Xiao as a conceptual board game with performative elements during a research residency at the University of the Underground in 2021. During the APAL residency in May 2023, as interdisciplinary performance collective East Alien Company, Yve Oh, Xiao Xiao and performance artist Yumo Cheng have developed an 18 minutes teaser performance and had their debut in Berliner Ringtheater, as an invite to the collective world-building of the game world.

East Alien Company also asks the questions: who has the ultimate right to define who is the essential worker or not? Can that right be manipulated? What kind of skills and abilities are needed in a state? What kinds of labor are counted and included and what are not? This interactive performance aim to to collectively reimagine the new possibility of beings.

Courtesy of Asian Performing Artists Lab
Photo: Olivia Kwok