Katabasis – a larp about descents and origin myths

Key themes: Myth creation, symbolism, communality, Movement as language, ESP

Designers: Una Hamilton Helle, Susan Ploetz, Francis Patrick Brady (UK/DE/NO/SE/US)

Presented by: Una Hamilton Helle, Susan Ploetz, Francis Patrick Brady (UK/DE/NO/SE/US)

Number of participants: 8–20 (even number)

Duration: 3 hours

Genre/style: Nordic-influenced, non-verbal, visual arts, movement based, somatics

Run before at: Playtested at Larporatory, Vilnius, Nov 2016.
Work in progress, script to be fine tuned over the next few months

Content warning: optional touch, close contact with players through eye contact and touch

About the larp

Katabasis is a non-verbal, movement-based larp about cave descents, origin myths and group archetypes.

Generations ago our people fled into a vast system of caves to create a new world. The Myth says that we started as one large group, but after the Great Divide we were separated. There are stories that the others are still out there, but we haven’t encountered them. As we descend further into the vast network of caverns, we feel the presence and traces of the mythical others as they appear to us as symbols, detritus and echoes in the dark.

We envision Katabasis as a flexible structure for those who want to think about the formation of societies and culture, as well as communication and the negotiation of differences. It is a larp that explores these themes through storytelling, symbol creation and ritualised movement and sound.

Requires: Movement-based (ie. crawling, dancing etc) but based on ability and optional

The organisers are artists based in London, Berlin and Malmø. They met at Larporatory in Vilnius where they wrote this larp. With varying artistic practices, rooted in visual culture, the performative and somatics they have been invested in role playing as art form for a few years.