BONANZA – 2006

A cinematic portrait of a desolate mining town, the smallest in Colorado [USA]. A microcosm of the world, the residents claim.

Once upon a time there was a little town,
with five friendly houses,
the Rocky Mountains lying at their feet.
Snow covers the streets in wintertime,
the Kerber Creek runs through the village
and if you look long enough
you can even see the elves.

In Bonanza there were once 6000 inhabitants catered for by 36 saloons, seven dance halls and an immense number of prostitutes for the miners. Their motto was: get in, get rich, get out. Now there are only seven permanent residents, immersed in their own spirituality, living on a hotbed of accusations, gossip, murder and fear.

Berlin portrays this world-in-miniature on a scale model of the town and five film screens. The soundtrack is made by Peter Van Laerhoven.


'Bonanza is fascinating and raises questions about the ways in which humans project their own irrational fears onto others: the ways in which we entertain prejudices about the Other that justify our barriers and boundaries and walls.' – The British Theatre Guide


Video and audio


Concept Bart Baele,
Yves Degryse,
Caroline Rochlitz
Photography Bart Baele,
Nico Leunen
Sound engineer Tom De With Editor Bart Baele
Soundtrack & mixing Peter Van Laerhoven Research Berlin,
Nico Leunen
Graphics Gerjo Van Dam Scale model Koen De Ceuleneer
Catering Kim Troubleyn,
Veronique Batens
Subtitles Sofie Benoot
Software development Frank Lanssens Electronics Dadaelectronics
Accounting Koen Huygebaert Set photos Kim Troubleyn
Aerial photos Saguache Ranger District Production Berlin
Co-production STUK [Leuven],
KVS [Brussel],
Vooruit [Gent]
With the support of Vlaams Audiovisueel Fonds,
Flanders Image,
Stad Antwerpen
BERLIN is artiste associé in