Photo : Swivelympics © DR
New Work
First in France
The Swivelympics
Richard DeDomenici
(United Kingdom)
Swivel chair world championships
For everyone
For reasons beyond our control, the swivel chair world championships is canceled

With DJ Frietmachine spinning in the Cloister of Saint-Mélaine Church, this other fair attraction could have been pulled straight out of a Monty Python episode. In an era of triumphant management, British artist and performer Richard Dedominici invented the “swivel chair world championships”, where people compete to complete the highest number of rotations in a single self-propelled spin, as judged by the very serious and professional International Swivelympic Committee (ISC). This off-the-wall and funny performance also carried a strong political message when it was created. It remains the best way to achieve international sporting greatness without standing up.

The performance came to life in 2012, with the Summer Olympics in London. It was a highly controversial time, when the British Government was adopting stricter brand protection measures, especially with an evolving list protecting use of words such as ‘Gold’, ‘Summer’, ‘Olympic’, ‘Games’, etc. To test the enforcement of these highly restrictive directives (which included fines of up to £20,000), Richard Dedominici created the Swivelympics, playing off the word ‘Olympics’ and ridiculing athletic performance to invent a pure office sport that anyone can play. It’s like a one-way ticket to international glory, where Lucy from Darlington still holds the record she set in 2015 with 48.5 rotations.

To the great surprise of the performance’s creator, it has been hugely successful and toured around the world, with stops at the National Theatre, the Boring Conference, Edinburgh Fringe, Latitude Festival, Festival of Thrift, Les Halles in Brussels, Anti Festival in Finland, and the inauguration of the prestigious Level 5 of the Tate Modern (London) in 2017. But the Swivelympics hadn‘t yet made its way to France.

That will no longer be the case when this highly popular British performer, who has become even more well-known since the adaptation of his satirical Redux Project (2015) on BBC Four, brings his performance to Tombées de la Nuit.


Richard DeDomenici was trained at Cardiff School of Art & Design and has created numerous performances in over 30 countries. He specialises in off-the-wall anarcho-surrealist interventions, creating social, playful and political performances related to what’s happening in the world. He even managed to carry the Olympic torch by crashing the Olympics ceremony in 2012. The event also inspired the highly libertarian and liberating Swivelympics. He also invented a portable karaoke machine, Carry-Ok, the knit cryptocurrency, Knitcoin, the radical feminist tribute at Eurovision, Fux Bizz and Shed your Fears. The 2015 adaptation of DeDomenici’s inexplicably popular Redux Project for BBC Four was described by critic Matt Truman as “one of the smartest, strangest subversive half hours of television I’ve ever seen.” In 2019, he will unveil his most ambitious project to date for the Radical Independent Art Fund.


Concept, réalisation : Richard DeDomenici

Friday 05 July 2019
18:30 > 21:30
Cloître de L’Église Saint-Mélaine, Rennes
Saturday 06 July 2019
16:00 > 18:00
Cloître de L’Église Saint-Mélaine, Rennes
Saturday 06 July 2019
20:00 > 22:00
Cloître de L’Église Saint-Mélaine, Rennes
Sunday 07 July 2019
15:30 > 18:30
Cloître de L’Église Saint-Mélaine, Rennes

Station de Métro : Sainte-Anne • Lignes de Bus : C3, arrêt Thabor - 31, arrêt George Sand - C1, C5, 9, 11, arrêt Sévigné • Station Vélo : Saint-Georges / Place Hoche

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The association is supported by the City of Rennes, the Brittany Region, the Ille-et-Vilaine Department & the ministry of culture.

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