We're All For The Underground

A project by Hillary Blake Firestone (2011)


Nicole Beutler feels a strong kinship with the work of Hillary Blake Firestone. They have collaborated in the past on many works for Nicole Beutler Projects. In 2011 Hillary worked on a new piece WE'RE ALL FOR THE UNDERGROUND. Nicole Beutler Projects supports this project as co-producer.

As the saying goes, ‘you only get one chance to make a last impression’. The question is, what makes for a fitting exit? In WE’RE ALL FOR THE UNDERGROUND, choreographer Hillary Blake Firestone, musician Mark Morse and vocalist Anat Spiegel contemplate humanity’s most prevalent, yet least favorite, cultural ritual: the funeral… from a morbidly up-close-and-personal perspective.

WE’RE ALL FOR THE UNDERGROUND is comprised of three funerals, one for each performer. Three lists of last requests are made, with numerous details considered: what songs would I want played? What becomes of my body? These final wishes are then left to the interpretative mercy of the other performers. Because, wish as you may, when you’re dead, someone else is running the show. This is an undertaking to which the star(s) must surrender.

WE’RE ALL FOR THE UNDERGROUND invites the audience to explore the shadowy architecture of a ritual that is equal parts bureaucracy and beauty, consolation and horror. It is a triple bill of last hurrahs. A band that dies three times. A funereal jukebox. A macabre cabaret. A certainty.

Hillary Blake Firestone and Mark Morse make performances inspired by the cultural rituals that mark our lives. Their first collaboration, This Is Hardly an Invitation (“which develops like an unstoppable chain reaction” – NRC Handelsblad) examined the anatomy of festivity. The musical body is central in their work, which strikes a tenuous balance between physicality, imagery, wry humor and sonic detail.

Cast & Credits

Concept: Hillary Blake Firestone i.s.m Mark Morse, Floriaan Ganzevoort
Made and performed by: Hillary Blake Firestone, Mark Morse, Anat Spiegel
Lighting design and technique: Floriaan Ganzevoort
Production: Martine Dekkers / Nicole Beutler Projects
Coproduction: Grand Theater Groningen, Nicole Beutler Projects, Dansmakers Amsterdam
Thanks to: Keren Levi, Mara Tomanek
Photography: Raymond van Mil