Héla Fattoumi and Éric Lamoureux founded the Compagnie FATTOUMI/ LAMOUREUX in 1988. Their first work Husaïs was awarded the prize for best first piece at the Bagnolet International Choreographic Competition in 1990, then their trio Après-midi received the “New Talents” prize from the SACD in 1991. These two pieces placed them as leaders of the new generation of contemporary choreographers and brought them international renown.
A space for research whose source is the intermingling of their individual features. From piece to piece, they mine the intrinsic intelligence of the body, its power to reveal meaning, which can also be thought as a part of movement. Several other important pieces were created in the same vein as Husaïs: Si loin que l’on aille (at the Théâtre de la Bastille and the Théâtre de la Ville, 1992); Fiesta (commissioned by the Avignon Festival, 1992); Asile Poétique (at the Théâtre de la Ville, 2000) based on texts by the poet Antonio Ramos Rosa; Wasla, ce qui relie… (at the Lyon Dance Biennial, 1998); Vita Nova (at the Grande Halle de la Villette, 2000) with the 11th graduating class of the National Center for Circus Arts. These pieces show choreographic work linked to the ideas of mastery/ nonmastery, strength/ fragility, minimalism/ performance, a dance whose expressive weight is charged by a “graphic energy.”
They were appointed directors of the CCN of Caen/ Basse-Normandie in 2004, where they continued their work with pieces focusing on societal issues. These works were La Madâ’a (at the Arsenal in Metz, 2004) with the Joubran brothers, Palestinian virtuosi on the oud; Pièze (a “pressure measurement”) and La danse de Pièze (at the Festival Dialogue de corps, Ouagadougou, 2006 and the Théâtre de la Bastille), about the idea of “homosensuality” in the Arab-Muslim world; Just to dance… (the Espace des Arts in Chalon-sur-Saône, 2010), a piece about the idea of “creolization” developed by Édouard Glissant; MANTA, a solo created at the Montpellier Festival in 2009 and performed on tour (Tokyo, Séoul, Berlin, Tunis, Brussels, Stockholm, Oslo), based on the problem inherent in wearing the niqab; Lost in burqa, (at the Festival danse d’ailleurs, 2011) a performance for 8 dancers, based on the “clothing-sculptures” by the Moroccan plastician Majida Khattari; Masculines (at the Arsenal de Metz, 2013) and on the representations of the feminine on both sides of the Mediterranean.
They are reactivating a choreographic research recharging itself with the expressive and poetic potential of dance. Une douce imprudence co-signed with Thierry Thieû Niang (at the Festival Ardanthé 2013, and the Théâtre National de Chaillot, 2014) on the idea of “Care”; Waves, a commission for the Swedish opera company NorrlandsOperan and its symphony orchestra, under the auspices of Umeå 2014, European cultural capital, for which they are associated with the Swedish singer and composer Peter von Poehl.
They also chose to step outside theatres to work in situ in other reactive contexts. In February 2009, they created the performance Stèles as part of a special “Nocturne”, a commission from the Louvre Museum. In 2008 they created Promenade at the Grand Palais, imagining a dialogue with the monumental sculptures of Richard Serra. In January 2012 they created Circle, inviting the audience into the center of a circular structure where dance goes wild with the massed collective energy of 26 professional and amateur dancers. In 2013, as part of the Normandy Impressionist Festival they stepped inside the exhibition “Summer at the water’s edge” at the Beaux-Arts Museum of Caen for a choreographic Flânerie (wandering).
Creation of the Festival Danse d’Ailleurs (Dance from Elsewhere) (2005) Beginning in 2005, they founded the Festival Danse d’Ailleurs whose vocation is to put back into perspective the idea of universalism while questioning referent frameworks for modernity in art, relating to cultural horizons. The first four editions focused on artists from the vast, diverse African continent and brought international recognition to the event, and the following editions opened as far as Asia, linking with the Hot Summer Festival in Kyoto, Japan.
Héla Fattoumi and Éric Lamoureux are fully committed to the promotion and the defense of choreographic art. From 2001 to 2004, Héla Fattoumi was the dance vice president of the SACD (Société des Auteurs Compositeurs Dramatiques). She was also in charge of programming the section called ”Vif du sujet” at the Avignon Festival. From 2006 – 2008, she was the President of the ACCN (Association of the National Choreographic Centers). From 2010 – 2013 Éric Lamoureux took over the Presidency; he is now the vice president. From 2013 to 2015, Héla Fattoumi has been the president delegated to long-term planning at the SYNDEAC.
In March 2015 Héla Fattoumi and Éric Lamoureux were named Directors of the Centre chorégraphique national de Franche-Comté in Belfort, for which they are developing their VIADANSE project.