After its editions in Germany, France, India, Taiwan, Canada, Sweden, Korea, Cambodia, Romania and Bosnia, A Museum of (Theatre) opens its doors from Friday 1 July to Sunday 3 July 2022 at the Kandy City Center, Kandy, Sri Lanka in the framework of the Spring Festival in partnership with the French Embassy, the Alliance Française, the Goethe Institute and the University of Peradeniya

The 21st edition of the Museum (of Theatre) closed its doors in Kandy, Sri Lanka on Sunday 3 July.

A few days later, the president was chased out of his presidential palace by a crowd.

This project, inspired by Heiner Müller’s Hamlet-Machine, has been reactivated since 2003 on different continents. In Asia, America and Europe, it is at one with the country’s history and political current events, and its divisions. It allows the inhabitants to write their own history, to bear witness as citizens, to be part of the movement of the world instead of being only disillusioned viewers behind a screen.


Text: Hamlet-machine
Author: Heiner Müller
Translation: Navadharshani Karunaharan (Tamil) – Ashani Ranasinghe and Asoka de Zoysa (Sinhala)

Concept: Clyde Chabot
Scenic design: Annabel Vergne
Scenic adaptation: Charlotte Arnaud
Voiceover: Kaushalya Fernando and Murugesu Ajanthan
Photography: Palitha Handunge, Kaushalye Saminda Bandara, Dhanushka Kumarathunga & Indika Bandara
Mediators: Dilanjana Madushan Pathirana, Dulmini Pavithra Kumari (Sinhala), Keshala Perera, Rochana Jayasinghe (English).
Administration: Clotilde Allard, Production assistant: Cindy Oliveira / Julie Ramambason
The Inavouable Community warmly thanks the photographers Palitha Handunge, Chamara Piyasena, MA Pushpakumara, Amitha Thennakoon, Tharmapalan Tilaxan, Ruvin de Silva, Jacques Soulié, Marco Valle who accepted to have their photos used in the installation.


Created in 2003, the Museum (of Theatre) has shown that it is still just as capable of “capturing the consciousness” of individuals and societies, and of drawing a sensitive and political map of a city, a region or a country.

A repeat performance is planned for 2023 in Jaffna in the North or Batticaloa in the East of Sri Lanka.

“My drama, if it were still to take place, would take place in the time of the uprising,” says Hamlet here. In Sri Lanka, the uprising took place on Saturday 9 July. People from all over the country flocked to the presidential palace in Colombo to force his resignation.
The portraits, made up of words from the play and video-projected photos, carried by the visitors with extreme fervour and sensitivity, express the intensity of the crisis and heralded the overthrow of the regime.
They also allowed us to bear witness to a past that leaves very vivid after-effects: 30 years of civil war, the tsunami in 2004, the oil spill in 2021, Covid-19, the traces of colonisation…
Never before has the project been so in touch with the current situation of a country and a people who have been fighting for months for their dignity in the face of the economic, social and political crisis, the shortages of petrol, electricity and food…

Never before has the project been carried by such a large and committed team of 40 professional and student artists, teachers, technicians, photographers and mediators who interpreted the Hamlet-machine text and carried the project with extreme élan because it was one with their struggles.

The text was translated and performed in both Sinhala and Tamil languages for a multicultural creation with the two main communities of Sri Lanka that were opposed to each other during the civil war. 4 performances of the show took place. The public came in great numbers (400 visitors) in spite of the problems of lack of petrol in a high place of the life of Kandy: the Kandy City centre, a commercial and cultural centre in the heart of the city, near the lake and at the foot of the temple of the tooth of the Buddha.


Concept: Clyde Chabot, Priyantha Fonseka, Chamila Priyanka
Choreography: Sudesh Mantillake and Hasanthi Niriella
Music: Niroshi Senevirathne
Production assistant: Dinuki Panditharatne
Production Support: Uvasara Dissanayake, Anuradha Jayaweera and Pruthivi Tharaka Kalpadeep, Technical Support: Danushka Kumarathunga, Nalin Wijesiri
Actors: Lahiru Sudesh Priyankara, Krishmi Apsara, Dinuki Panditharatne, Selvaraj Rajeew, Balendran Pradharini, Randika Rajapakshe, Chamodha Kumarasingha, Udeni Ellegala, Sanduni Chamishka Wanasinghe, Ayesha Malshani, Chiranthi Sanjana, Dharshani Kumari, Pruthivi Tharaka Kalpadeep, Tharushika Teenavi De Silva, Musicians and performers: Vidura Gunawardhane, Udeshika Swarnamali, Iman Manodya, Nimthara Jayasooriya, Dance and Percussion: Sudesh Mantillake, Hasanthi Niriella and Kanchana Keerthirathne. Support team: Sunil Bandara, Deepani Herath