When the mountain changed its clothing

Music theatre by Heiner Goebbels with Carmina Slovenica

  • (c) Video: Matthias Mohr
  • © Dorian Silec
    (c) Dorian Silec
  • © Dorian Silec
    (c) Dorian Silec
  • © Dorian Silec
    (c) Dorian Silec
  • © Dorian Silec
    (c) Dorian Silec

When the mountain changed its clothing explores the changes experienced by the 40 girls from Maribor, ages ten to twenty. They confront us with stories and questions about the end of childhood. The old is no more, yet the new remains out of reach. On this threshold, they assemble to play seemingly harmless games, verses, songs, and create poetic threatening images. In a mutual interplay of sovereignty and repression, the young singers move through the cycle of the seasons, constantly calibrating the balance of power relations among one another and especially between the audience and the stage.

"What do young girls dream of?" – "Of the knife and of blood."

In 1995, this fragment of dialog by French writer Alain Robbe-Grillet closed an early musical theater work by Heiner Goebbels, Die Wiederholung (The Repetition). It now represents the point of departure for his latest work of music theater. Together with the singers and his artistic team, Heiner Goebbels developed a scenario in which the girls constantly sway between a cliché of childish innocence and unpredictability. These highly charged images also emerge from the unbelievable energy of the young protagonists and reflect a social transformation: the rapid political and social changes in the region of this group and their musical culture.

Under the artistic direction of conductor Karmina Šilec, the Slovenian vocal group has developed an international reputation. With its large repertoire, stretching from medieval to folk works and contemporary music, they perform around the world. Vocal Theatre Carmina Slovenica not only impresses with their great musical and choreographic precision, but also due to the self-confidence of the young singers.

The music to When the mountain changed its clothing combines music from Carmina Slovenica’s repertoire with partisan songs from the Tito era and popular music.

Concept, Direction and Music —
Artistic Direction Vocal Theatre Carmina Slovenica —
Stage and Light —
Costumes —
Choreography —
Dramaturgy —
Sounddesign —
Texts —
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Joseph von Eichendorff, Adalbert Stifter, Gertrude Stein, Alain Robbe-Grillet, Marlen Haushofer, Marina Abramovic und Ian McEwan
Music —
Johannes Brahms, Arnold Schönberg, Karmina Šilec, Lojze Lebič, Sarah Hopkins und Heiner Goebbels


— 26. September 2012
Further dates
— 27. 28. 29. September
— 1 h 30 min
— 26. 27. 28. 29. September: 18.45 at Turbinenhalle
performance in english with german subtitle
— 20 / 30 / 40 / 55 €
Reduced prices start at 10,00 €
  • Wed26Sep
    19.30 - 21.00
    When the mountain changed its clothing on 26. September 2012 at 7.30 PM
  • Thu27Sep
    19.30 - 21.00
    When the mountain changed its clothing on 27. September 2012 at 7.30 PM
  • Fri28Sep
    19.30 - 21.00
    When the mountain changed its clothing on 28. September 2012 at 7.30 PM
  • Sat29Sep
    19.30 - 21.00
    When the mountain changed its clothing on 29. September 2012 at 7.30 PM


Heiner Goebbels / Holger Noltze
30. September 2012
Museum Folkwang, Essen
A Ruhrtriennale production. Coproduced by Steirischer Herbst (AT), Maribor Theatre Festival (SI), Festival Borštnikovo srečanje in the context of Maribor 2012 European Capital of Culture (SI), Théâtre de la Ville-Paris & Festival D'Automne, Paris (FR), Grand Theatre, Luxemburg (LU), Kunstfestspiele Herrenhausen (DE) Holland Festival, Amsterdam (NL) and Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Brussels (BE).

Kindly supported by the association of friends and sponsors of the Ruhrtriennale.