Identity of the Soul ID logo
Identity of the Soul Arabic logo

press release

Identity of the Soul is a five screen cinematic interpretation of work by two of the world’s most illustrious and famous poets. ID was inspired by Henrik Ibsens’ ‘Terje Vigen’ and Mahmoud Darwishs’ ‘A Soldier Dreams of White Lilies’. With an extraordinary soundtrack, archive footage and narrated on the screen by the late Darwish himself. The moving associated images are dramatically interspersed with compelling sequences of powerful verse imaginatively brought to life by the performer’s impressive interpretation.  These are simultaneously projected onto five large screens. The symbolic imagery, music and movements act as a backdrop for the narrated words.

Ramallah was the home of the poet and writer Mahmoud Darwish and for this reason was chosen as the ideal location to premier the event the 5th of October 2008. It then toured throughout the West Bank: Ramallah, Nablus, Jenin refugee camp, Qalqilya, Jericho, Hebron/Halhul, Bethlehem and Abu Diz – more than 22.000 audience attended.Nablus, Jenin refugee camp, Qalqilya, Jericho, Hebron/Halhul, Bethlehem and Abu Diz – more than 22.000 audience attended.

Henrik Ibsen's most famous poem Terje Vigen is a harrowing drama about a mans’ choices that are wrought out of desperation. The performance is a poetic exploration of an individual’s response to hatred; to exact revenge or not.  Ibsen wrote Terje Vigen in 1862, forty years before the independence of Norway and the semi-ideal characteristics of Terje Vigen together with the historical circumstances under which his story unfolds made the poem a central part of the Norwegian national identity building of the period.

Mahmoud Darwish was one of the most influential contemporary poets of the Arab world. A Soldier Dreams of White Lilies was written in 1967 inspired by a conversation between Darwish and an Israeli soldier. The poem transcends time, place and conflict with a lyrical simplicity that lends itself well to performance. A Soldier Dreams of White Lilies complements Ibsen’s Terje Vigen, as they both describe the lonely nature of making life and death decisions.

The soundtrack to id was composed by Paul Noble and Dan Berridge exclusively for the 2008 production which is presented in immersive surround sound. Blending the worlds of traditional Scandinavian instrumentation, contemporary electronic textures and rhythms from a wide variety of international musicians has created the soundtrack.

id - Identity of the Soul will immerse the audience in music, imagery and poetry, all designed to assault and seduce them, on a scale that is intensely emotional, sensitive and thought provoking.  Viewers will be challenged, lulled, comforted and encouraged to reflect on their own choices in life, the choices that are made in their name and how they as individuals would act if faced with similar dilemmas.

high res stills for download

Identity of the Soul Red line Graphic
Identity of the Soul 5 screen film lighthouse in Alexandria