Spoken Word Performance: Manu van Kersbergen

A spoken word performance about greed

Within Opera Forward, besides opera, the meeting of opera with other art forms is central. Therefore, in line with the opera The Seven Deadly Sins, seven spoken word artists were asked to each create a performance about one of the seven deadly sins. You can hear the result during OFF Night #1 on 18 March. Manu van Kersbergen has created a performance about the deadly sin greed.

Manu van Kersbergen
Manu van Kersbergen had his break through as a word artist in 2008 with his album ‘De vloek op de overvloed’ (‘The curse on the abundance’) . He developed a great love for telling and conveying stories with rhythmic and poetic elements. In 2015, Manu founded, together with Derek Otte, publishing house Rorsach, a platform for controversial word artists. With music, spoken word and many other forms of linguistic word art, he has already appeared on several stages in both the Netherlands and Belgium.

Manu van Kersbergen on the deadly sin greed
“The deadly sin avaritia (greed) resonates strongly in many of my works. I made my debut with my solo album ‘De vloek op de overvloed’ (‘The curse on the abundance’), in which I linked the current, skewed distribution of wealth to our common, colonial past. When you like at it like that, that history is not so far removed from our post-modern reality, in which excessive wealth is taken for granted. In fact, there is a deep-rooted greed at the heart of the abundance we surround ourselves with.

In my view, greed is not a sin. It is rather a disease. A disease from which I myself, as a descendant of that unbridled hunger for growth, suffer too. At the same time, I am a deconstructionist at heart. And I do not believe that by turning some neoliberal knobs of our capitalist model, a fairer redistribution of wealth will be achieved. For that, we should really look at ourselves, as a human family, more sincerely. “To be reborn, you must first die. In order to build anew, the foundations must first be demolished.””

Photo: Milagro Elstak

Watch the festival trailer: