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Jan Lauwers & Needcompany Sad Face / Happy Face
Part 2: The Lobster Shop – The Future

Laugh and be gentle to the unknown
Three stories on human nature – Part 2

Performances within the Trilogy:
1, 3, and 5 August 2008
In English and French with German surtitles

Duration of the Trilogy: approx. 4,5 hours, 2 breaks (45 minutes each)


  • 01 August 2008, 16:00
  • 03 August 2008, 16:00
  • 05 August 2008, 16:00

Print programme (PDF)


Jan Lauwers, Text, stage direction and sets
Hans Petter Dahl and Maarten Seghers, Music
Lot Lemm, Costumes


Hans Petter Dahl, Axel
Grace Ellen Barkey, Theresa
Tijen Lawton, Jef
Anneke Bonnema, Catherine
Benoît Gob, Vladimir
Benoît Gob, Sir John Ernest Saint James
Inge Van Bruystegem, Nasty
Julien Faure, Mo
Maarten Seghers, Salman


With his productions Isabella's Room and The Lobster Shop, Jan Lauwers created theatrical works that chronicle the pursuit of happiness in a shocking way through a mixture of contemporary dance, fine art, family drama and modern musical. Together with Das Hirschhaus (The Deer House), commissioned by the Salzburg Festival, the two first parts make up a trilogy that departs from the most mundane to depict the most difficult: a felicitous life together.

The geneticist Axel created the first human clone. But when his son dies in a stupid accident and his body disappears, he is not able to clone him. Axel and Theresa's marriage is shattered by this loss and their grief. Axel decides to take his own life, and as a farewell ritual, he orders lobster at his favorite restaurant, the Lobster Shop. However, the waiter trips, the food lands on Axel's white suit – and in this second, his life passes before his eyes in a great danse macabre.

Coproduction of the Festival d'Avignon, Théâtre de la Ville (Paris), Théâtre Garonne (Toulouse), PACT Zollverein (Essen), Cankarjev Dom (Ljubljana), La Rose des Vents (Scène National de Villeneuve d'Ascq), Automne en Normandie, La Filature (Scène Nationale de Mulhouse), Kaaitheater (Brussels) and deSingel (Antwerpen), with the support of the Flemish authorities and the European Union's program Culture 2000.