“Last Night of the Deer” is a show by Jānis Balodis and Nahuel Cano, telling the story of a roadtrip and a deer crash in a snow storm. It is a beautiful live music, theatre and spoken word performance. The piece lingers between a spoken word concert and storytelling, moving towards a collective dancing moment at the end.
In December 2021, Nahuel Cano was traveling from Amsterdam to Riga. Jānis Balodis picked him up from a ferry in Klaipeda. They were driving. It was late in the evening, already dark, and a severe snow storm started right after they left Klaipeda. They decided to take a smaller road, and there they hit a deer.
“The Last Night of the Deer” is a story about that one December evening when they visited Lidl, refuelled LPG in Viada and met an anthropologist, hit the deer, crushed a skull, got covered with blood and feces, were running from dogs, and were barely accepted in a taxi. It is a (true) story about all-too-human forests and the more-than-human spirits that inhabit it.
In its depth this performance is based on frustration with our anthropocentric worldview (=the belief that human beings are the central or most important entity in the universe). The performance takes us on a road trip in the intermediary space somewhere between the human and non-human. The work is very much inspired by anthropologist Eduardo Kohn, and his work “How Forests Think”. This text seeks to prove and understand the ways in which the semiotic/thinking process takes place outside the human environment.