In Search of the Lost Revolution/ À Procura da revolução perdida

A radio ballet in the inner city of Lisbon
On the 9th of July 2008, 6 o´clock p.m.

In the early morning of the 25th of April 1974 the radios told their listeners in Lisbon not to go out on the streets. Instead, they asked them to keep calm and wait until the military had finished their operation. But the listenes didn´t obey: They left their homes and turned the coup d’etat into a revolution. A strange dream became true, a dream, which many people dreamed at the same time with eyes widely opened: within a day the reign of the dictatorship collapsed. For a short historical moment the power appeared to be lying on the street. Maybe this dream became true only as so many people gathered as a collective of active dreamers, performing the most radical political act: awakening and demanding to take their fate into their own hands, interrupting the normality of their every day life – suddenly realising, that an ocean of unpredictable possibilities lies ahead of them.


Nowadays the streets of the inner city of Lisbon serve as stage for totally different collective dreams: tourists find here the beauty, the cities they come from have lost, shoppers look for commodities that fulfill all their wishes and desires and the police controls that everything stays as it is. The streets became a place for the private and dispersed appropriation of commodities without any other possibility. The revolution is history: The memory of a joyful and uncontrollable situation is slowly fading away.


But what will happen, if it doesn´t go on like this? Could the revolution be remembered in another, new uncontrollable situation? On the 9th of July 2008, 6 pm the radio will do the opposite than on 25th of April 1974: It will ask it´s listeners not to stay at home, but to go out on the streets and appropriate them for a while. LIGNA invites the listeners to trace the revolution in the Rua Augusta by radio. The listeners on the street constitute a new kind of collective: dispersed as the comsumers, but nevertheless connected by the radio, which will propose to them gestures, movements and actions. A strange collective: at the first sight invisible – but at the same time able to act different than every body else. Even to stop - the most common act on a street – performed by the temporary collective of radio listeners will change the situation in the street, paving the way into another collective dream of upredictable situations. By enabling deviations the radio invites the listeners to explore the rules and conditions of everyday-life, taking them on a cruise on a whole new ocean of possibilities inside the standardised street life.


The only thing necessary to participate is a portable radio – everyone can get one at Rua Augusta, corner to Rua de Santa Justa at 5 o´clock and join the scout for the lost revolution!

(photographs were made during the performance in Lisbon)