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Primera Persona

Primera Persona 2018

Autobiographic live sessions: stand-up comedy, pop music, theatre and narrative

Festivals

The CCCB presents year 7 of Primera Persona, the benchmark festival that brings together creators from various artistic disciplines who base their work on their own life experience. Readings, monologues and conversations, performances that the participants prepare exclusively for the festival. This year, Primera Persona is also celebrating its third outing at La Casa Encendida in Madrid.


Friday 11 May

Session 1 / 7 p.m. / CCCB Theatre

“A Chronicle of Two Crimes” (Carles Porta, Joan M. Oleaque and Ramón Campos) / Vivian Gornick with Anna Guitart

“A Chronicle of Two Crimes” opens year seven of the festival. In it, journalist and writer Carles Porta, author of Tor, tretze cases i tres morts (La Campana, 2005)—the now classic Catalan true crime narrative—talks with the journalist Joan M. Oleaque, who covered the Alcàsser crime for El Temps magazine as of 1993 and wrote one of the best works of chronicle and investigation about it to be published in Spain: Des de la tenebra. Un descens al cas Alcàsser (Empúries, 2002). They are joined by TV producer Ramón Campos, creator—with his production company Bambú Producciones—of successful Spanish series like Las chicas del cable (2017) and Velvet (2014-2016), who recently released Fariña (2018), the TV adaptation of the book about Galician drug-trafficking by journalist Nacho Carretero. For 2019, Campos is preparing a documentary mini-series about the Alcàsser case. Language: Catalan and Spanish

On stage to close the first session of the festival is the New York writer Vivian Gornick, one of the world’s most distinguished and respected women writers and feminists, very much in the first person. She has written several books, including two memoirs, Fierce Attachments (1987) and The Odd Woman and the City  (2005). At Primera Persona, she’ll be talking to Catalan journalist and writer for radio and television Anna Guitart. Language: English with simultaneous translation (Catalan)

Session 1 - Tickets Sold Out

 

Session 2 / 10 p.m. / CCCB Theatre

Tom Gauld / Sheela (Wild Wild Country)

Scottish cartoonist and illustrator Tom Gauld opens the festival’s second session. Known as “a book-lover’s cartoonist”—most of his strips are about literature and bibliophiles—Gauld likes to laugh, affectionately, about book collectors, critics, established writers and the literary canon. He is a contributor to newspapers such as The Guardian, The New York Times and The New Yorker and touches down at Primera Persona to present his latest book, Baking with Kafka (2018). Language: English with simultaneous translation (Catalan)

Closing day one of the festival is Sheela, the leading character in the Netflix documentary series Wild Wild Country (2018), former personal secretary to and spokesperson for the spiritual master Osho. She became known worldwide thanks to the Netflix series, which looks at her key role in the development of the cult of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and addresses issues such as conspiracies, alternative post-hippy religious cults and culture shock, among many others. A charismatic and controversial media figure, especially after the creation of a huge Rajneesh commune in the Oregon desert, Sheela became the visible face of confrontation with the former inhabitants of that region, first, and then with the US authorities. This confrontation led to 29 months’ imprisonment, accused of several of the activities carried out in the community. Her participation in Primera Persona presents in all its complexity this iconic character in a series that has made her a global phenomenon, but with many nuances. And, most of all, a fascinating life story straight out of a novel. 

The television critic and writer Roberto Enríquez (Bob Pop) will interview Sheela. Language: English with simultaneous translation (into Catalan)

Session 2 - Tickets Sold Out

 

Saturday 12 May

Session 3 / 7 p.m. / CCCB Theatre

Carla Simón and Elena Martín / Ishmael Reed with Marina Garcés / Simon Reynolds: Glam Rock: from T. Rex to Lady Gaga

Two representatives of a new generation of highly personal Catalan filmmakers take the stage to open day two of the festival: Carla Simón and Elena Martín. Simón, after making various experimental documentary shorts shown on TV3, became a global phenomenon with the most intimate story she could tell—her own, that of her family: Estiu 1993 (Summer 1993, 2017), the film that won the Award to the Best New Director at the 2018 Goyas, among other prizes. Simón talks to Martín, who became known when she played the lead in the film Les amigues d’Àgata (Agatha’s Friends, 2015) and divides her time between cinema and theatre, between acting and directing. In 2017 she made her debut as a director with Júlia Ist. Language: Catalan

They are followed on stage by Ishmael Reed, a key figure in the history of Afro-American culture. Initially influenced by the beat and Harlem Renaissance poets, his free, rhythmic prose and his beautiful jazz delirium have made him one of the authors who have best managed to explain the ancestral myths of black history with the most avant-garde proposals. In addition to his roles as a lecturer at the University of California and as a poet, here we discover his talents as a novelist, with titles like Mumbo Jumbo (1972). Reed talks to the philosopher, thinker, teacher and activist Marina Garcés, recently awarded the Premi Ciutat de Barcelona Essay Award for her book Nova il·lustració radical (2017). Language: English with simultaneous translation (Catalan)

Finally, English culture critic, music journalist and pop thinker Simon Reynolds takes the stage to talk about “Glam Rock: from T. Rex to Lady Gaga”. In his latest book, Shock and Awe. Glam Rock and its Legacy (2016), Reynolds analyses this androgynous, working-class, avant-garde genre, that has made its mark on him since his early childhood. Language: English with simultaneous translation (Catalan)

Session 3 - Tickets Sold Out

 

Session 4 / 10 p.m. / CCCB theatre

Gee Vaucher (Crass) with Brigitte Vasallo / Virginie Despentes with Christina Rosenvinge and Jordi Nopca

We begin the second session with Gee Vaucher, English painter, filmmaker and visual artist, member of the influential anarcho-punk band Crass (1977-1984). In 1967 she set up Dial House, an "open house" that is still active today. At Primera Persona, Vaucher talks to Brigitte Vasallo, Barcelona writer, teacher and antiracist activist, particularly known for her criticism of gender islamophobia and her defence of polyamory in affective relationships. Language: English with simultaneous translation (Catalan)

Finally, the French writer Virginie Despentes, one of modern feminism’s most vigorous voices, takes the stage to close the seventh edition of Primera Persona. Despentes, who left home and gave up her studies at 17 and became a prostitute and punk, is author of the novel Baise-moi, the Vernon Subutex trilogy and the autobiographical essay King Kong Theory. The writer will be talking to Catalan journalist and writer Jordi Nopca, editor of Ara newspaper and winner of the Premi Documenta 2014 Award for his short-story collection Puja a casa. They will be joined on stage by Madrid singer-songwriter Christina Rosenvinge, who has run the gamut of the Spanish music scene, from radio format to indie. Rosenvinge, one of the best writers of Spanish-language pop music, whose latest work Un hombre rubio (2018) reviews clichés about masculinity, will be reading excerpts from Despentes’ work. Language: Spanish

Session 4 - Tickets Sold Out

Related contents

Carla Simón and Elena Martín

Primera Persona 2018

Carla Simón and Elena Martín are two representatives of a new generation of highly personal Catalan filmmakers. Simón, after making various experimental documentary shorts shown on TV3, became a global phenomenon with the most intimate story she could tell—her ...

Gee Vaucher (Crass) with Brigitte Vasallo

Primera Persona 2018

Gee Vaucher is an English painter, filmmaker and visual artist, member of the influential anarcho-punk band Crass (1977-1984). In 1967 she set up Dial House, an "open house" that is still active today. At Primera Persona, Vaucher talks to Brigitte Vasallo, Barcelona writer, teacher and ...

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