From the glitzy opening to the standing ovation on the last night (and the many in between), TEST had a memorable run in Basel in front of enthusiastic audiences. What’s more, renowned producers from New York, London and Berlin flew in for the red-carpeted start on February 20 as well as other performance dates. Major stars in Switzerland, such as band leader Bo Katzman and the musical actor Ritschi, were also on hand for the first public performance of TEST, a production that was born in Basel.
It was a Basel show through and through, from the creative team that primarily lives in Basel to the backing of major Basel institutions such as the Basler Zeitung and the Messe Basel (the Basel Trade Fair). The TEST team held all its creative meetings in Basel and the surrounding areas. Auditions took place in Basel. The TEST team planned and implemented the two workshops in Basel. And the grueling rehearsals were spread out at various sites in Basel. What’s more, many of the 27 financial investors in TEST are from the Basel area.



This city on the Rhine River is a major European hub of innovation, science and culture. The Basel Autumn Trade Fair has been drawing merchants to the city for more than 500 years. This tradition continues with important gatherings such as Art Basel and Basel World. The rock opera TEST fits in well with this nexus of science, business and art. With so much creativity in the air, it’s not surprising that this important new rock opera on the theme of gene editing saw the first lights of the stage in Basel.
Home has been good to TEST, and the creative team will never forget its roots. But TEST is about to bust out to bigger spaces. The TEST creative team has always viewed Basel as the off-off-Broadway location, a place to iron out the wrinkles of TEST, away from the harsh glare of big-city lights. It’s a well-worn path for musicals: Start in smaller locations, build from there.



The bigger locations that TEST has in mind are the epicenters of musicals: New York and London, Hamburg and Berlin. It will take a helping hand to get there. But that has been true from the beginning of TEST. The support has always been there when needed. The backing that has poured in over the past four years has been incredible. So many people have given freely of their valuable time and money, along with their deep-reaching love, especially in Basel, the city where TEST was born.
And the support continues, from locations across Europe and across the Atlantic. But no matter where the investors, backers and theaters are located going forward, TEST will remain at heart a Basel production. The toil of four years is spread across this city’s and this region’s landscape, from the airport to the railway station, in various bars and restaurants, and to remoter parts of the surrounding Basel region. They have all left their creative imprint on the story, music and staging of TEST.



And that won’t change as TEST heads out to the wider world. We have gathered a tremendous amount of forthright, honest feedback from our Basel audiences. More than 200 people responded to our survey to tell us what they liked and didn’t like about TEST. Their thunderous applause still rings in our ears. And we have looked closely at their suggestions for change. We are very grateful for this outpouring of approval and the readiness of the people of Basel and elsewhere to assist us. Not only was TEST born in Basel, it was also nurtured along by the good people of this city. We hope you will continue to follow us as we move up and out. The Basel performances were not the end. They mark the beginning of this journey.