Who is a „real housewife“? Demographically, she should be in her mid-thirties to late forties, rich, and with a family. As for personality, there is one essential: A woman must be willing to put her entire life on camera for four to six months a year of filming. She must be unafraid to talk about cracks in her marriage, the disappointment of not being able to conceive, the heartbreak of being snubbed by someone she thought was her friend, or the devastation of her divorce. She needs to be willing to „mention it all!”. Otherwise, she is a regular person who happens to be compelling television.
The Unreal Housewives of Vienna vs. The Unreal Housewives of Graz is a performance piece inspired by the reality TV franchise The Real Housewives. But rather than doing impressions of the housewives, the show is inclined to explore the housewives as characters in a play, multifaceted and rich in metaphor. They can be interpreted as ghosts of the capitalist dream and symbols of a shrinking difference between reality and fiction. But, perhaps most importantly, they should be seen as performance artists worthy of being taken seriously. In a time when everyone with a smartphone carries a camera on them at all times, the show asks questions about what it means to be captured on film, how people change when they know the camera is on them, and how people release themselves when they think the cameras are off. The Unreal Housewives of Vienna vs. The Unreal Housewives of Graz is a docu-soap that eliminates anything other than the central drama of people being famous on TV.
Housewives of Graz: Barbara Carli, Rosa Degen-Faschinger, Bea Dermond, Gudrun Maier
Housewives of Vienna: Stephanie Cumming, Susanne Gschwendtner, Isabella Händler, Anat Stainberg
Set: Götz Bury, Paul Horn
Musik/Sound: Michael Strohmann
Kleider: Susanne Bisovsky
Make up: Eliese Barnard (Graz), Marietta Dang (Wien) Regieassistenz: Katharina Höltermann
Directed by Yosi Wanunu
Produced by Kornelia Kilga, Rosa Degen-Faschinger
A collaboration with Die Rabtaldirndln; Coproduced by brut Wien
Kristallwerk Graz/June 7 – 12, 2022; brut Wien/Oct 21 – 28, 2022