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Lilith is a collaborative danceplay by Gary Gordon and Reza de Wet (1952-2012).

The original text

The text written by Reza de Wet, and the performance created by Gordon and the cast, are based on the fraught story of Adam and the mythical character "Lilith", in many cultures seen as a dangerous and seductive demon of the night and according to Jewish folklore Adam's first wife.[1]

The play opens with the following motto:

"Beautiful Lilith, so they say, forlorn and betrayed by her husband, Adam, went away to live under the sea until, on a black night, hanging hard to the dark with her hands, and pushing against it with her feet, Lilith gave birth to the moon." (De Wet, 1998)

According to Praeg (2018), in exploring this theme the work "seeks to evoke an archaic and archetypal underworld", while simultaneously contemporising the narrative in a courtroom scene where a modern couple are engaged in divorce proceedings.

The text of the script, and a description of the work by Juanita Finestone-Praeg, has been published in Physical Intelligence Volume 1: Experiments in Physical Theatre (First Physical Theatre Company, 2002).

Translations and adaptations

Performance history in South Africa

1998: Performed by the


Juanita Finestone-Praeg. 2002. Physical Intelligence Volume 1: Experiments in Physical Theatre. Grahamstown: First Physical Theatre Company.

Juanita Praeg. 2018. "Drifting: Reminiscing. Remembering. Reinventing. Reza" (Draft manuscript, courtesy of the author.)

Daniël Botha Stander. 2016. Reza de Wet’s Channeling of the Long Nineteenth Century on Post-1994 South African Stages. Unpublished MA thesis, University of Stellenbosch.[2]

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