A nation’s self-hatred – Denmark between shame and self-esteem

The Olske Orkester created from 2017 to 2020 the trilogy: “A nation’s self-hatred – Denmark between shame and self-esteem” about the Danes’ self-understanding over the last 300 years. In the trilogy, we examine the movements in national self-understanding that occur from the 18th century to the present day. In the first part – SUGAR (this should be a link to Sugar) – we are in the 18th century with colonies in distant continents, the slave trade and an outward curiosity about the world that gives hopes for an empire with the sovereign king as anchor. From here, a move is made towards the second part of the trilogy, SALT , and the introverted national rearmament of the 19th century under the slogan “what is lost outwardly, must be won inwards ”. In Salt, we shut ourselves behind the national borders after the loss of the greatness of the empire and focus on the notion of faith, freedom and budding nationalism. < span style = "font-weight: 400;"> The notion of nationality from the 19th century is perceived by many today as completely natural, but we want to examine it as the complicated construction it really is. A construction that presents challenges when foreign banks on Denmark’s door. We address this in the third part of the trilogy WHO IS THE BANK with a focus on what the migrant crisis in 2015 meant and means for our self-perception Today. With this trilogy, we, as a theater, want to get involved in the debate about the understanding of Denmark’s identity, all the way back from our imperialist past to the present day in relation to Denmark’s handling of newcomers and our role as a warring nation in the world. We do this because we think the time with its political radicalisations calls for us to look critically at the Danish national self-understanding and the resulting enormous fluctuations between narcissism and self-hatred. On the one hand, we blindly favor our own Western world, and on the other hand, we are ashamed that there is a gap between our good will and our own inability when a burning world knocks. We want, based on complex and paradoxical human stories, to give an artistic bid with the trilogy. SUGAR played at Teater Republique in March 2018 < strong> SALT played at Aalborg Teater in March 2019 WHO IS THE BANK was to play at Helsingør Teater in March 2020 , but played due to corona at Forsøgsstationen November 2020 .