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Choreographer(s) : Armitage, Karole (United States)

Dropped by Centre chorégraphique national – Ballet de Lorraine

en fr



Choreographer(s) : Armitage, Karole (United States)

Dropped by Centre chorégraphique national – Ballet de Lorraine

en fr


Rave is a celebratory happening mixing dance, capoeira (a Brazilian art form that combines elements of martial arts, dance, and music), voguing (an underground African-American and custom of social performance and fashion show appropriation begun in Harlem in the 1960s), wushu (Chinese martial arts), and catwalk for 26 dancers in iconic costumes ranging from Marilyn Monroe to an American Indian chief. All of the dancers paint their bodies in bright colors from head to toe – skin is orange, purple, green, gray, blue. Rave is constructed on Vogue Dance twisted through the lens of mixing many different movement forms into a celebration of life as a combination of ball, ballet and carnival for the 21th century.

Rave requires a minimum three-day workshop for 18 local dancers (9 women and 9 men)  to learn sections of the choreography. This is followed by two days of rehearsal with the full cast prior to a public performance. The teaching residency can be done with the full company present or AG!D can sent a company member ahead to teach the material to local dancers. AG!D provides the costumes for all dancers. Ideally the women dance on pointe. The technical level of the pointe work is not difficult. All guest dancers have to donate a pair of clean pointe shoes or ballet shoes that can be painted in the color of their costume. Additional dancers must be provided by the presenter, pending approval by Karole Armitage. Any fees for additional dancers are the responsibility of the presenter.

Armitage, Karole

Karole Armitage, known as the 'punk ballerina' is the Artistic Director of the New York-based Armitage Gone! Dance Company. She was rigorously trained in classical ballet and began her professional career as a member of the Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genève, Switzerland (1973-1975), a company devoted exclusively to the repertory of George Balanchine who was director of the company at that time. In 1976, she was invited to join Merce Cunningham's company, where she remained for five years, (1975-1981) performing leading roles in Cunningham's landmark works. Through her unique and acute knowledge of the aesthetic values of Balanchine and Cunningham, Armitage has created her own "voice" in the dichotomy of classical and modern dance, and is seen by some critics as the true choreographic heir to the two masters of 20th century American dance.  In 2016, Armitage was honored with a Radcliffe Fellowship at Harvard University and a Simons Fellowship at The University of Kansas to study Native American Plains Culture with a focus on Pawnee, Kanza and Osage tribes. In 2017 she is beginning a muliti year Fellowship as an MIT Media Lab Directors Fellow.    

Armitage created her first piece in 1979, followed by the iconic Drastic-Classicism in 1981. Throughout the 80s, she led her own New York-based dance company, The Armitage Ballet. Commissions from the Paris Opera Ballet and American Ballet Theatre led to choreographic commissions in Europe throughout the 80s, 90s and into the early 2000s with projects that continue to this day. She has created new works on companies and served as director of multiple Ballets and Companies.

Armitage is renowned for pushing the boundaries to create contemporary works that blend dance, music, visual ar and science to engage in philosophical questions about the search for meaning. She joins a legacy of process-focused experiemntal dance that embraces the ballet and modern dance heritages as well. She is inspired by disparate, non-narrative sources, from 20th century physics, to 16th century Florentine fashion, to pop culture and new media. In her hands, the classic vocabulary is given a needed shock to its system, with speed, fractured lines, abstractions and symmetry countermanded by asymmetry. Music is her script and she has collaborated with contemporary and experimentalist composers such as John Luther Adams, Thomas Adès, Rhys Chatham, Terry Dame, Vijay Iyer, David Lang, Lukas Ligeti, Lois V Vierk and John Zorn. The scores can be marked by extreme lyricism as well as dissonance, noise and polyrhythms. The sets and costumes for her works are often designed by leading artists in the contemporary art world, including Karen Kilimnik, Jeff Koons, Vera Lutter, Brice Marden, David Salle and Phillip Taaffe. Her scientific collaborators include Dr. Brian Greene (Columbia University) and Dr. Paul Ehrlich (Stanford University). The full-length works on theoretical physics and climate change respectively were presented at the World Science Festival and in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life at the American Museum of Natural History.

Armitage’s work is at once both esoteric and popular, having choreographed two Broadway productions, videos for Madonna and Michael Jackson, several Merchant-Ivory films and Cirque du Soleil’s 2012 tent show. As the 2016 Artistic Director of Italy’s Ravello Fesival for an evening of American Dance, Armitage invited New York City Ballet, Martha Graham Dance Company, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, William Forsythe, Richard Move and her company to participate in a survey of the techniques and philosophies of American Dance set into motion by Native Americans performing the Prairie Chicken Dance.

She has directed operas from the baroque and contemporary repertoire for prestigious houses of Europe. In 2009, she was awarded France’s most prestigious award, Commandeur dans l'orde des Arts et des Lettres. She is the 2012 recipient of the artist-in-residence grant at the Chinati Foundation, founded by Donald Judd in Marfa, Texas, and received an honorary Doctorate of the Arts from the University of Kansas in 2013.

Source : Armitage Gone ! Dance 

re information :

CCN - Ballet de Lorraine

The Centre Chorégraphique National - Ballet de Lorraine (which was awarded the title of Centre Chorégraphique National in 1999), is located at 3, rue Henri Bazin in Nancy. Its origins go back to 1968 with the creation of the Ballet Théâtre Contemporain (BTC), established at the Maison de la Culture in Amiens.

As the first decentralized company to prioritize choreographic creation, the BTC, after a stopover at the Theatre of Angers, established itself permanently in Nancy. After the departure of Jean-Albert Cartier, its founding director, the Ballet, which has had several different organizational names, was directed by Patrick Dupond, Pierre Lacotte, Françoise Adret and Didier Deschamps. We must note the importance of the role played by André Larquié, President of the board of directors for the Centre Chorégraphique National – Ballet de Lorraine from 1998 to June of 2014, who along with having a great deal to do with the installation of the BTC in Nancy in 1978 was also instrumental in the classification of the Ballet de Lorraine as Centre Chorégraphique National and the seeing through of the change of its focus to a contemporary repertory.  As of June 2014 Michel Sala was elected to succeed as President of the board of directors for the CCN-Ballet de Lorraine.

Since acquiring the CCN title in 1999, the Centre Chorégraphique National - Ballet de Lorraine has dedicated itself to supporting contemporary choreographic creation. As of July 2011 the organization is under the general and artistic direction of Petter Jacobsson.
The CCN – Ballet de Lorraine and its company of 26 dancers is one of the most important companies working in Europe, performing contemporary creations while retaining and programming a rich and extensive repertory, spanning our modern history, made up of works by some of our generations most highly regarded choreographers.
The CCN functions as an art center and venue for multiple possibilities in the fields of research, experimentation and artistic creation. It is a platform open to many different disciplines, a space where the many visions of dance of today may meet. 

Source : CCN – Ballet de Lorraine

More information : 


Choreography : Karole Armitage

Interpretation : 7 danseurs AGD et 19 danseurs locaux invités

Original music : David Shea

Lights : Clifton Taylor

Costumes : Peter Speliopoulos

Duration : 03:00

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