The play ‘How to kill a tree’ follows the lives of five trees across a 500 year period from the 1550’s. There is an old Sámi belief that certain trees have only just lost the power of voice; Thomson picks up that idea to speculate on just what the trees might say to each other, or perhaps even to us. During this period the trees have witnessed great changes in their surround- ings and the way in which they’ve been regarded by the human society around them. The biggest change being the invention of forestry as an in- dustry, and its continual evolution as a discipline propelled by a belief in productivity and growth. The five trees are the central characters of this play and a drama unfolds as these external changes affect their circumstance. As modernity creeps into the forest through mechanisation and the newly realised desire for profit the trees’ ‘voices’ are eroded and empathy between them breaks down.
A play by Edward Clydesdale Thomson, created in collaboration with Anna Nijenhuis, Eva Meijering, Nick Bos, Mathieu Wijdeven and Carmen van Mulier. Dramaturgy by Doke Pauwels. Costumes and set by Sacha Zwiers. Sound by Terje Øverås. Technician Hansjan Fokkens. Production Yvonne Dubbers