The Manual




Photos by: Mani Lotfizadeh


A performer imprisoned in a vending machine- as a product- performs based on the audience demand- as a costumer-. The audience can choose the music, the scene, the language and the lighting as a director, or dictator.
In the original/desired setup, the whole project is under the  control of 15 surveillance cameras and security confronts any suspicious or disturbing behavior (But this part is not mandatory
The site-specific performance of "The Manual" (The correct way to use the machine), is an experience for the usage of social measures; violence, security and the sense of control which exists in the totalitarian societies by the performative elements with anxiety. In fact, it’s a study on the basis of audience’s scale of decision and power of act, in spite of the severity of force and authority which is dominant in the environment.
The play script is an adaptation of Hamlet by Shakespeare, based on the critical situation of Iran. The sick relationship of the state's power and people. "Iranianised Hamlet" now lives and performs in Tehran, in a vending machine. Get's the audience cash through the machine and gives them back what they request, or what they want, actually what they are. - mirroring them-.
The Manual is an effort to connect two complex situations -Iran 2010-2018 and Denmark 1599 that profoundly affect on who encounter the performer in the box which can be globalized easily. The Manual is an integration of technology and theater, employing classic narratives on a modern context to challenge the socio-political situation of the time, through a process of subtraction, displacement, emphasis, and replacement.




-First performed on July 8, 2012

-“Shahr Theater”, Tehran, Iran  

-Also performed at “Tehran East Gallery”, Tehran, Iran

-Also shown as a video presentation at Carnegie Mello University, Pittsburgh, USA


Performed 40 times in 2012


(Performers) Alireza Keymanesh, Ehsan Badakhshan, Mahdi Salamani, Mahdi Shahedi, Amir Ebadi asl, Mahan Hirbod, Mahdi Gharachedaghi, Aliasghar Kouzegar, Maryam Gorji, Delaram Hashemi ; (Music) Bamdad Afshar ; (Photography) Mani Lotfizadeh; (Video) Amin Kaffashzadeh; (Light Design) Aliasghar Kouzegar; (Graphic design) Pejman Takdehghan; (Production Manager) Mohammad Safarpour.