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Berlin: ‘HooDoo’ Makes Audience Dance and Cheer

The pre-premiere of the most inventive show Berlin has to offer took place on Wednesday. ‘HooDoo’ could be defined as a ‘Creole music theater art installation event’. Since squeezing it into any genre drawer is impossible, it just created its own, the ‘HooDoo’ genre.

Is ‘show’ is the right word for this mesmerizing, colorful ‘happening’? Tough one. Even if it is not, it is an excellent one, and it starts before it actually starts: Walking into the circus tent at Berlin’s Spiegelpalast location is already part of the show. Having a shrimp sandwich with garlic sauce at ‘Joe’s’, right in front of the tent, is as well.

Getting a drink in the tent’s lobby, which is illuminated in pink, is definitely part of ‘HooDoo’. So is listening to the accordion player at the bar. The conversation you are having with your seat neighbor is part of ‘it’. Yes, referring to ‘it’ as ‘it’ makes a lot of sense.

The main part of the ‘HooDoo’ spectacle includes members of the audience. They can dance with professional dancers in the circus ring, sing with the excellent band, cheer with the rest of the audience, or all at once.

Jump-starting ‘HooDoo’ in Berlin is a decision its creator and producer Nicklas Sample took. The Swedish-American artist, who grew up in a Creole family in Louisiana and lived in New York City until he came here, chose Berlin, the city of cities, for the world premiere because it “has been the center of art, culture and avantgarde” for a long time.

Sample is the son of the late Jazz pianist, composer and producer Joe Sample. He wanted to “bring a taste of New Orleans and the Creole culture to a place outside the United States” and definitely picked the right one (see video of interview with Nicklas Sample).

Nicklas Sample is the creator of ‘HooDoo’. Photo: Imanuel Marcus

In order to make it happen, he moved over to Berlin with his wife, the co-creator and co-producer of ‘HooDoo’, and his two children.

‘HooDoo’s world premiere was experienced by an international crowd. People took part by dancing to Rock, Zydeco and Funk sounds played by the nine-piece band with members from all parts of the U.S.. ‘HooDoo’ deserves to be successful.

The official premiere takes place tonight, on April 10th, 2019, but the ‘show’ will run until May 19th. Tickets are available here.

Related article (with interview): Nicklas Sample: American Artist Takes Creole Culture Project to Berlin