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Quando l'uomo principale è una donna

Biennale de la danse
2004

Choreographer(s) : Fabre, Jan (Belgium) Gruwez, Lisbeth (Belgium)

Present in collection(s): Biennale de la danse , Biennale de la danse - 2004

Video producer : Maison de la Danse;Biennale de la Danse

Integral video available at Maison de la danse de Lyon

en fr

Quando l'uomo principale è una donna

Biennale de la danse
2004

Choreographer(s) : Fabre, Jan (Belgium) Gruwez, Lisbeth (Belgium)

Present in collection(s): Biennale de la danse , Biennale de la danse - 2004

Video producer : Maison de la Danse;Biennale de la Danse

Integral video available at Maison de la danse de Lyon

en fr

Quando l'uomo principale è una donna

Choreographer Jan Fabre and Lisbeth Gruwez
Dancer Lisbeth Gruwez

The inspiration for this piece was the anthropometric acts by Yves Klein in which bodies were used as living paintbrushes. In Fabre's work Klein's often expressionless prints are given a distinct face and an appealing aroma. The dancer moves beneath a sky full of bottles, from which olive oil first drips then gushes and splashes and finally transforms the whole stage into a reflecting bath. The oil evokes a great many connotations: medical, cosmetic, Christian. The olive tree as Mother Earth, old and indestructible, a balm to the world. But there is ambiguity here too: its fruits were once used as a contraceptive. The musical Leitmotiv is the familiar Italian song Volare (oh-oh) by Dominic Modungo. An ode to Klein's work, and especially his photo Leap into the Void. Fabre sees the whole piece as a ritualistic preparation for the highest leap, which takes us back to the matriarchy. The strength of this solo lies in its constant shifts: from man to woman, from human to animal, from straight line to circle, from rolling, sliding movements to rising slowly upright, like a tree that grows more and more branches, like a swan that has fertilised itself. The atmosphere is summery and Italian, but the howling wind ranges from a gentle summer breeze to an approaching storm. The dancer herself also alternates ritualistic transformations with a juggler's and conjuror's tricks. Humming all the time, she plays with her gender, with balls in her trousers, on her chest or in her mouth. Before you know it an hermaphrodite becomes a sexless angel.

Source : www.troubleyn.be

Credits

Chorégraphie Jan Fabre, Lisbeth Gruwez Dramaturgie Miet Martens Interprète Lisbeth Gruwez Scénographie Jan Fabre Costumes Daphne Kitschen Lumières Jan Fabre, Pieter Troch  Musique Maarten Van Cauwenberghe Production Troubleyn (Anvers) Coproduction Théâtre de la Ville (Paris), de Singel (Anvers)
Avec le soutien de Festival Iberoamericano de Teatro de Bogota, Gouvernement de Flandre Accueil Théâtre le Point du Jour, Biennale de la Danse Production vidéo Biennale de la Danse - Maison de la Danse

Updating : February 2012

Fabre, Jan

Jan Fabre (b. Antwerp, 1958) is a graduate of the Municipal Institute of Decorative Arts and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts. He is well known both at home and abroad as one of the most innovative and versatile artists of his day. Over the past 25 years, he has produced works as a performance artist, theatre maker, choreographer, opera maker, playwright and visual artist. Jan Fabre is renowned for expanding the horizons of every genre to which he applies his artistic vision.

In the late 1970s, the still very young Jan Fabre caused a furore as a performance artist. His 'money performances' involved setting fire to bundles of money from the audience in order to make drawings with the ashes. In 1982, the work "Het is theater zoals te verwachten en te voorzien was" (This is Theatre like it was to be expected and foreseen) placed a virtual bomb under the seat of the theatre establishment of the day. This was confirmed two years later with "De macht der theaterlijke dwaasheden" (The Power of Theatrical Madness) commissioned for the Venice Biennale. Since then, Jan Fabre has grown to become one of the most versatile artists on the international stage. He makes a clean break with the conventions of contemporary theatre by introducing the concept of 'real-time performance' – sometimes called 'living installations' – and explores radical choreographic possibilities as a means of resurrecting classical dance.

Alongside age-old rituals and philosophical questions, Fabre also deals with such themes as violence, lust, beauty and erotica. The body in all its forms has been the subject of his investigations since the early 1980s. Productions such as "Je suis sang, Tannhäuser", "Angel of Death" and "Quando l'uomo principale è una donna" have earned international acclaim in this respect. The invitation to help lend artistic shape to the Avignon Festival in 2005 can undoubtedly be seen as a (provisional) pinnacle of Fabre's work in the domain of performing arts.

In 2007, Jan Fabre created "Requiem für eine Metamorphose" for the Salzburg Festspiele, which was also performed at the RuhrTriennale and the Vilnius Festival. In the same year he created I am a Mistake in collaboration with Chantal Akerman and Wolfgang Rihm for a selection of European concert houses. In 2008, Fabre wrote the solo Another Sleepy Dusty Delta Day for the Croatian performer Ivana Jozic based on the legendary Bobbie Gentry hit, "Ode to Billy Joe". This theatre and dance solo was retaken in 2010 by the Greek performer Artemis Stavridi. Fabre's rencent production, Orgy of Tolerance explored the boundaries of normality in a society where everything is available and for sale and was considered "an absurdist satire of our shameless world of excess." This very successful production toured worldwide. In 2010, Fabre wrote the third part of the trilogy for Dirk Roofthooft: "The Emperor of Loss", "The King of Plagiarism" and "The Servant of Beauty" were performend both in Dutch and French.

Source : Jan Fabre / Angelos website

More information

janfabre.be

troubleyn.be

Gruwez, Lisbeth

Lisbeth Gruwez (1977) is a Belgian dancer and choreographer, half of Voetvolk's artistic team. She started practising classical ballet at the age of 6 and studied at the 'Stedelijk Instituut voor Ballet' (Antwerp), combining high school with a professional dance education. Once graduated, she joined P.A.R.T.S. (Brussels) to study contemporary dance.

In 1999 she started working with Jan Fabre, being part of his guerriers de la beauté. Having performed in « As long as the world needs a warrior's soul » (2000) and « Je suis sang » (2001), she rose to international fame because of « Quando » l'uomo principale è una donna (2004), the solo Jan Fabre created specifically for (and with) her, well-known for its olive oil-drenched stage.

Apart from working with Fabre, she also collaborated with Ultima Vez (« The Day of Heaven and Hell »), Jan Lauwers|Needcompany (« Images of Affection »), Grace Ellen Barkey (Few Things), Riina Saastamoinen (« Cry Me a River ») and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui ("Foi").

In 2007 she founded Voetvolk, together with Maarten Van Cauwenberghe. Their work is an ongoing conversation between corporal and auditive movement, in order to achieve a symbiosis between the aural and the visual/physical.

Apart from establishing her own choreographies with Voetvolk, Lisbeth Gruwez has danced in Arco Renz' i!2, together with Melanie Lane, and she also played the leading role in Lost Persons Area, Caroline Strubbe's first feature film.

Gruwez danced in videoclips for A Brand ("Hammerhead"), Juliette and the Licks ("Death of a Whore"), Dirk Braeckman (promoting A.F. Vandevorst's winter collection) and MUGWUMP ("At the Front").

She is also one of the "KVS faces", the open ensemble of artists and thinkers associated with the Royal Flemish Theatre of Brussels.

Right now she is touring with Voetvolk creations We're pretty fuckin' far from okay and Lisbeth Gruwez dances Bob Dylan, and with KVS creation Odysseus. She is also preparing « Thoughts for Meditation », Voetvolk's first large-scale production, to premiere in 2018, for which she will stay offstage to coordinate the bigger picture.

Source : The company Voetvolk 's website

More information

voetvolk.be

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