Performance CABARET of an INTRUDER - Branko Milisković

We invite you to the opening of exhibition which presents new members of ULUS for 2018. Opening is on Friday, January 12, 2018 @ 7pm at Umetničkom paviljonu „Cvijeta Zuzorić“.


The performances of Branko Milisković know no boundaries—he is an ‘intruder’ par excellence. Throughout his oeuvre, in works such as Lili Marlene, Interloper, Couvre-feu, APPOINTED, Ceçi n’est pas UN garçon a la Pipe, he uses costume, make-up, song and character to break up the experience of the everyday and to create a disorienting spectacle for the audience.

In Cabaret of an Intruder he pushes the idea of a cabaret to the next level. Originally an informal form of theatre, performed in a pub or restaurant, with unconventional content, however in Milisković’s show, the artist breaks the fourth wall and forces his audience into often uncomfortable situations, singing directly to them, beckoning for them to approach him and crowd around him, imploring them to come closer than most audiences ever would.

For Milisković, the Intruder is someone who infiltrates a particular group of people with the aim of understanding and even ‘colonising’ them. In his words, the Intruder’s aim is “to adapt, assimilate as well as to become a member of certain group but somehow, sooner or later, an intruder is unable to make it all the way through, becoming very suspicious as an element that doesn’t belong to the group, clearly interfering.” In this performance, the Intruder doesn’t fit in from the beginning, appearing before the audience in gender-ambiguous stage make-up and quirky, albeit masculine clothing—a bow tie and suspenders. He invades the viewers’ personal space, singing old-timey melancholic tunes such as Irving Berlin’s 1923 ballad “What’ll I do,” while staring directly into the eyes of one of the audience members.

The performance starts with the artist reading Edgar Allen Poe’s classic poem, The Raven, which he uses as the “ultimate symbol of the Intruder, knocking on the door, bringing all possible fears, demons and anxiety to the storyteller.” As the Intruder, it gradually becomes clear that Milisković will make no attempt to adapt, but rather will continue to play on the fears and insecurities of the audience, not only putting them in awkward positions, but invoking their anxieties by providing them with a range of situations and experiences.

But what is the purpose of this Intruder in our lives? If it is through the ‘Other’ that the self is defined, then Milisković provides the perfect mirror to reflect all of our deepest and most hidden emotions. There is nowhere in the theatre to hide from this trespasser. In confronting him, we are forced to confront all of our demons. In exchange, the Intruder learns everything about us, and perhaps in this way he can ultimately fit in.

Text by Amy Bryzgel


Duration: aprox 30 min 


Photo by Jonathan Roy