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Outwitting the Devil 2019 - Director : Dos, Maxime

Choreographer(s) : Khan, Akram (United Kingdom)

Present in collection(s):

en fr

Outwitting the Devil 2019 - Director : Dos, Maxime

Choreographer(s) : Khan, Akram (United Kingdom)

Present in collection(s):

en fr

Outwitting the Devil

“I have awakened to a new way of dancing. And that is to dance my  ideas through the bodies of others, including older dancers, who carry  their histories and complex emotional experiences within them. But what  remains unchanged is my passion for exploring old and new myths in the  context of our times.” – Akram Khan

We are thrilled to be touring our latest Company production Outwitting the Devil.  Stirring classical and contemporary, Akram Khan explores our oldest  rituals in the midst of our ever-changing planet. He brings together a  superb ensemble of six international artists sharing great differences  in their practice: Ching-Ying Chien, Jasper Narvaez, Dominique Petit, James Vu Anh Pham, Mythili Prakash and Sam Asa Pratt.

Inspired by the newly discovered fragment of the Babylonian Epic of  Gilgamesh, one of the world’s earliest surviving great works of  literature, Akram’s new work is a concentrated epic about ritual and  remembering. In a landscape of broken tablets and fallen idols, its six  characters trade their remaining wealth and stories, seeking to make  whole the fragments of ancient knowledge lost and forgotten over time.

To weave the narrative and design of this new piece, Akram has invited his close collaborators: dramaturg Ruth Little, composer Vincenzo Lamagna, rehearsal director Mavin Khoo, costume designer Kimie Nakano, and writer Jordan Tannahill – joined by lighting designer Aideen Malone and visual designer Tom Scutt. Outwitting the Devil invites us all to the table where life, death and our half-remembered myths are the bread we break together.

Source: Akram Khan Company

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Khan, Akram

Akram Khan is one of the most celebrated  and respected dance artists of today. In just over 19 years he has  created a body of work that has contributed significantly to the arts in  the UK and abroad. His reputation has been built on the success of  imaginative, highly accessible and relevant productions such as XENOS, Until the Lions, Kaash, iTMOi (in the mind of igor), DESH, Vertical Road, Gnosis and zero degrees.

As an instinctive and natural collaborator, Khan has been a magnet to  world-class artists from other cultures and disciplines. His previous  collaborators include the National Ballet of China, actress Juliette  Binoche, ballerina Sylvie Guillem, choreographers/dancers Sidi Larbi  Cherkaoui and Israel Galván, singer Kylie Minogue, indie rock band  Florence and the Machine, visual artists Anish Kapoor, Antony Gormley  and Tim Yip, writer Hanif Kureishi and composers Steve Reich, Nitin  Sawhney, Jocelyn Pook and Ben Frost.

Khan’s work is recognised as being profoundly moving, in which his  intelligently crafted storytelling is effortlessly intimate and epic.  Described by the Financial Times as an artist “who speaks tremendously  of tremendous things”, a highlight of his career was the creation of a  section of the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony that was  received with unanimous acclaim.

As a choreographer, Khan has developed a close collaboration with  English National Ballet and its Artistic Director Tamara Rojo. He  created the short piece Dust, part of the Lest We Forget programme, which led to an invitation to create his own critically acclaimed version of the iconic romantic ballet Giselle.

Khan has been the recipient of numerous awards throughout his career  including the Laurence Olivier Award, the Bessie Award (New York Dance  and Performance Award), the prestigious ISPA (International Society for  the Performing Arts) Distinguished Artist Award, the Fred and Adele  Astaire Award, the Herald Archangel Award at the Edinburgh International  Festival, the South Bank Sky Arts Award and eight Critics’ Circle  National Dance Awards. Khan was awarded an MBE for services to dance in  2005. He is also an Honorary Graduate of University of London as well as  Roehampton and De Montfort Universities, and an Honorary Fellow of  Trinity Laban.

Khan is an Associate Artist of Sadler’s Wells and Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts, London and Curve, Leicester.

Source: Akram Khan Company

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Dos, Maxime

A graduate of the 2005 promotion from the Institute of Audiovisual Communication Trades (IMCA) in Avignon, Maxime Dos lives and works in Grenoble as a director, cameraman, editor and graphic designer.
Since 2010, he has been responsible for audiovisual communication for the contemporary company of Akram Khan (London): trailer, documentary, recording, webdoc, and develops a universe specific to each creation, in particular thanks to his skills in dressing and motion design.
He also works with the contemporary dance company Jean-Claude Gallotta for whom he has made numerous recordings of dance performances, as well as teasers and concepts of video scenograph.


Akram Khan Company

In July 1999 in the foyer of the Queen  Elizabeth Hall in London, an animated and curiosity-filled conversation  took place between the young gifted dancer/choreographer Akram Khan and  an ambitious former dancer and just recently graduated arts manager  Farooq Chaudhry. That conversation laid the foundation stone for a  dynamic collaboration, culminating in the creation of Akram Khan Company  one year later.

Inspired by Akram Khan’s early training in the Indian classical dance  form Kathak, and the hybrid language that organically emerged when  Akram’s kathak training encountered contemporary dance in his teens, a  vision began to form, fuelled by a desire to learn and create through  collaboration with the very best people across all the disciplines in  the arts.

The rules were simple: take risks, think big and daring, explore the  unfamiliar, avoid compromise and tell stories through dance that are  compelling and relevant, with artistic integrity.

In just over twenty years Akram Khan Company  is now undisputedly one of the foremost innovative dance companies in  the world. The programmes range from kathak and modern solos to  artist-to-artist collaborations and ensemble productions. The company  has a major international presence and enjoys busy tours that reach out  to many cultures and peoples across the globe. Akram Khan has been the  recipient of numerous international dance awards, the most notable being  an Olivier Award for his solo production DESH in 2012. A  milestone in the company’s journey was the creation of a section of the  London Olympic Games Opening Ceremony in 2012. Akram Khan Company is an  associate artist at Sadler’s Wells Theatre and Mountview Academy of  Theatre Arts in London and Curve Theatre in Leicester.


Akram Khan Company produces thoughtful, provocative  and ambitious dance productions for the international stage. Akram Khan  takes human themes and works with others to take them to new and  unexpected places – embracing and collaborating with other cultures and  disciplines. The dance language in each production is rooted in Akram  Khan’s classical Kathak and modern dance training and his fascination  with storytelling. The work continually evolves to communicate ideas  that are intelligent, courageous and new, bringing with it international  acclaim and recognition as well as artistic and commercial success.

Source: Akram Khan Company

More information:

Outwitting the Devil

Artistic direction / Conception : Akram Khan

Choreography : Akram Khan

Choreography assistance : Mavin Khoo

Interpretation : Ching-Ying Chien, Jasper Narvaez, Dominique Petit, James Vu Anh Pham, Mythili Prakash, Sam Asa Pratt

Artistic consultancy / Dramaturgy : Ruth Little

Set design : Tom Scutt

Text : Jordan Tannahill

Original music : Vincenzo Lamagna

Lights : Aideen Malone

Costumes : Kimie Nakano

Production / Coproduction of the choreographic work : Co-production : Théâtre de Namur – Centre Scénique, CENTRAL – Centre Culturel de La Louvière, Festival d’Avignon, Théâtre de la Ville – Paris, Sadler’s Wells London, La Comédie de Clermont-Ferrand – scène nationale, COLOURS International Dance Festival 2019 – Stuttgart

Animal Kingdom

The Animal Kingdom Project is an initiation between Numeridanse and Akram Khan Company. 

Inspired from the Company’s production Outwitting the Devil  that centres the human connection to the natural world, this project is  an opportunity for you to evoke the wild things that we believe, live in you.

We would like to invite all of you from wherever you are in the  world, no matter what age you are, what your physical ability is or  level of dance experience, to explore the deepest part of your  imagination. We would like you to choreograph your own performance  embodying seven animals of your choice, to a music composed by Vincenzo  Lamagna. We’re encouraging you to then film your creative genius and  send the performance video to Numeridanse. The film will then be  displayed online and will create an animal kingdom that connects each of  us around the world.

You can do it on your own, in a duet or in a group. We will guide you  through all that you need to know with the tutorial videos that you can  find below.

In a world where people are connecting through digital devices more  and more, it feels like the perfect time to invent and invest in new  ways of coming together. Join us in this adventure! Create it, film it,  share it. With all the videos we receive, we will edit a final dance  film that will represent our global community: our shared animal  kingdom. 

So, what are the animals within you? 


You have until Sunday September 13, 2020 to participate in the Animal Kingdom project!  

To find out more, join the project page here.

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