The award winning "The Encounter" by Complicite on / ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE

The award winning "The Encounter" by Complicite on

19-25 MAY 2017

Performed in English with English subtitles
2 hours (no intermission)
Age guidance: 12+
An ‘exotic’ hi-tech experience beams us into the tropical rain forests of the Amazon and into the realms of the subconscious. Our guide, the founder of the company that would go on to change the contemporary theatre for good: Simon McBurney in person!
To watch The Encounter online, viewers will simply need to visit at 19:00 on 19 May and click ‘Play’ on the video (scroll down).

Viewers must wear headphones to experience the show’s binaural sound design (3D sound).

The Encounter online will be available on YouTube for 1 week until 7pm on 25 May 2017.
We are delighted to be partnering with Complicité to broadcast The Encounter online. The show, described as ‘a tour de force’ by Financial Times and ‘one of the most fully-immersive theatre pieces ever created’ by New York Times played a sold out run at London’s Barbican theatre in 2016, but on 19 May at 19:00 the show will be available online and you can watch it until 25 May at 21:00 on our website for free.

Are you ready for a first: a synaesthetic experience which invites us to commune as never before with nature, time, memory, culture—and hence with ourselves?

A restless explorer of theatrical narrative, new technology and audiovisual form, founder of the legendary Complicite theatre company, which has defined and redefined the contemporary international scene since 1983, the dramatist, director and actor Simon McBurney returns at the Onassis Cultural Centre, this time online.

The Encounter, a solo recital by McBurney, is Complicite’s latest production, an international co-production with the Edinburgh International Festival, the Onassis Cultural Centre, the Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne and another three important European theatres.

It all started with a book McBurney read twenty years ago and never forgot: Amazon Beaming by the Rumanian author Petru Popescu. The work relates the true story of a National Geographic photojournalist, Loren McIntyre, who in 1969 disappeared into the rainforests between Peru and Brazil on an assignment to find the mythical source of the Amazon. Rescued by the members of an unknown tribe, he was initiated through their rituals into a strange, consciousness-expanding experience.

McBurney promises us a similar experience.  All he asks is that we wear headphones in a playful ritual which is clearly of 21st-century provenance. And that’s because the distinguished sound-designer Gareth Fry (London Olympics, 2012) uses advanced binaural technology to create a 3D-audio soundscape of the primeval—and now endangered—Amazon ecosystem; it’s as though we’re right there in the Earth’s lung.


Inspired by the novel Amazon Beaming by Petru Popescu

Director and Performer: Simon McBurney
Co-director: Kirsty Housley
Set Design: Michael Levine
Sound Design: Gareth Fry, Pete Malkin
Lighting: Paul Anderson
Projection: Will Duke
Director’s Assistant: Jemima James

The Encounter online is supported by The Space & BBC Arts Digital

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