Who Wants to Meet a
Real God Damn American?
Photos by Lion Van Den Brand
Written and Performed by Noah Voelker
Eindregie: Stephanie van Batum
Advies: Petra Ardai & Ogutu Muraya
Thank-you: Isobel Dryburgh, Cescolotov Tondeldoos,
& Chi Fung
"How do we make our national identities?”
In March 2018 I received an email from a casting agency that said that there was an opportunity for me to audition for a major film about “American soldiers fighting off hundreds of Taliban in Afghanistan”. While I am not so keen on the themes of the movie, I am intrigued by what I see at the bottom of the email in bold: “MUST BE BASED IN EUROPE. MUST BE ABLE TO PLAY AMERICAN” I immediately record myself doing an audition and send it off to the casting agency. A few days later, they reply with this: “Great job Noah! But, we need you to do it again, we need you to be more American this time.
In this solo storytelling performance Noah moves between his present moment in Amsterdam trying to find his place and a pivotal moment from his childhood suburban Texas. Noah attempts to understand what it means to be a real American (so he can get a movie role) for other people by using his truck driving, church going, super friendly Russian-American brother as a role model.
It is a sensitive, funny, critical work based on his time as an American living abroad; taking aim at what it is to be American and the unsettling potency in being an American in light of recent history. The performance not only brings into question America, but examines how we make our national identities, let alone perform them for other people.
More dates to come