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Speak Boldly : The Julius Eastman Dance Project/Femenine

Speak Boldly : The Julius Eastman Dance Project/Femenine

Speak Boldly : The Julius Eastman Dance Project/Femenine

The project is a musical-choreographic exploration of the works of Afro-American composer Julius Eastman, who passed away in 1990. The project takes into special account the broader history of minimal music and contemporary dance. It expands the spectrum of the established canon of minimal art dance pieces inspired by music and adds to it a new, previously little-heard voice.

In the process, it brings together more than 20 artists from a wide range of cultural backgrounds. 

J. Eastman, born 1940 in Ithaca, New York, was one of those multi-talents rarely found in music history. He was a musician, composer, singer and dancer. He began piano lessons as a young child and soon later also started dance training. He had a remarkably deep singing voice. Very soon, his talents began to cause a stir and consequently he worked with acclaimed artists such as Morton Feldman, Pierre Boulez, Meredith Monk and Arthur Russel. His compositions were enthusiastically performed and received in the USA and Europe. However, as an openly gay Afro-American in an art form dominated by whites, he never quite managed to really become part of the minimal music community. In the end, he died lonely and homeless, after a long bout of substance abuse. Most of his compositions were also lost in the process. Thanks to various reconstructions in recent years, his work has been rediscovered and is finally receiving due international recognition. 

This project attempts to render three of Eastman’s pieces – Gay Guerilla, The Holy Presence of Joan d’Arc and Femenine – with international guests into choreography that concentrates on the rhythmic qualities and political objectives of Eastman’s music. The starting point is the hypothetical question: What if Eastman’s music had become part of the musical canon? What inspirations could dance have drawn from his work?

All pieces are performed live by the renowned Zafraan Ensemble.


http://www.christoph-winkler.com/en/productions/speak-boldly-the-julius-eastman-dance-project/

Winkler, Christoph

Christoph Winkler is one of the most versatile choreographers in  Germany. His work covers a wide range of formats and deals with topics  both of a very personal nature as well as highly political contributions  to current social discourse. 

Born in Torgau in the former GDR, he was a multiple Spartakiad winner  in the disciplines weightlifting and judo as a teenager. He then  studied martial arts and breakdance, before being accepted at the  National Ballet School in Berlin. After the fall of the wall, he danced  in video productions for MTV and worked as a bodyguard and construction  worker. In the early 1990’s, he performed in underground techno clubs.  Then he studied choreography for four years at the prestigious School  for Drama “Ernst Busch“ and founded Klangkrieg Productions, a platform  for experimental music. Under this label, he produce work by numerous  acclaimed musicians such as the Venetian Snares or Current Value. At the  same time, he also curated the festival AvantPop and organized parties  and concerts e.g. for the Fuckparade. 

After graduating from the Ernst Busch in 1998, he consciously chose  to continue working as an independent choreographer in Berlin. Right  from the start, he received much critical acclaim and numerous  invitations to festivals for his innovative dance style and minimalist,  rigorously composed, discursive dance dramas. 

In 2007, he founded the agency BERLIN GOGOS with "ehrliche arbeit –  freelance office for culture” as a way to commercially market  contemporary dance and address the economic situation of contemporary  dancers today. 

His works consistently deal with topics that reference issues  currently discussed in society at large, but that also directly pertain  to and affect the art form of dance. 

Recent works are: “Dance! Copy! Right?” (2012) about copyright in  art, especially in dance, “RechtsRadikal” about neo-Nazi women and “The  True Face – Dance Is Not Enough”, an entertaining overview of protest  art forms, both 2013. The solo “Baader – A Choreography of  Radicalisation” was invited to the German Dance Platform in 2012 and  dancer Martin Hansen was named Dance of the Year by the German leading  dance journal “tanz” that same year for his role in the piece. In 2014,  Winkler produced the solo “Hauptrolle” with Ahmed Soura from Burkina  Faso about the role of people of color on German stages, as well as the  dance heritage Tanzfonds Erbe piece “Abendliche Tänze” about the  subjective process of memory. That same year “The True Face” won the  FAUST Prize of the Deutsche Bühnenverein in the category “Best  Choreography”; it was the first time that this prize was awarded to a  piece produced entirely outside the German municipal and state theater  system. 

In spring 2015, he created the very intimate solo “La Fille- Portrait  of a Child” together with Emma Daniel, in which Christoph Winkler  reflected on his relationship with his own daughter, followed by “Golden  Stars on Blue” about the European comunity and its symbolism. In 2016,  he produced a series of shorter pieces  entitled „Studies on  Postcolonialism“ questions white dominance in an art form that prides  itself in its internationalism. That same year, he was once again  present at the FAUST awards, when Aloalii Tapu was named „Best Dancer“  for the solo „Urban Sou Café“ . In addition, he also initiated a  co-curated „The Witch Dance Project“ with Franziska Werner/Sophiensaele.  In 2017, within three months, he premiered five new pieces: an ensemble  project, two new solos, his first work for younger audiences, and his  first collaboration with the Cantus Domus Chor. For CTM 2018, he will  present the wide-ranging project „The Complete Expressionist“, a tribute  in music and dance to the multifaceted pioneer and pedagogue Ernest  Berk. 

winkler, Christoph

Christopher Winkler is one of the most versatile choreographers in Germany. His work covers a wide range of formats and deals with topics both of a very personal nature as well as highly political contributions to current social discourse.   
Born in Torgau in the former GDR, he was a multiple Spartakiad winner in the disciplines weightlifting and judo as a teenager. He then studied martial arts and breakdance, before being accepted at the National Ballet School in Berlin. After the fall of the wall, he danced in video productions for MTV and worked as a bodyguard and construction worker. In the early 1990’s, he performed in underground techno clubs. Then he studied choreography for four years at the prestigious School for Drama “Ernst Busch“ and founded Klangkrieg Productions, a platform for experimental music. Under this label, he produce work by numerous acclaimed musicians such as the Venetian Snares or Current Value. At the same time, he also curated the festival AvantPop and organized parties and concerts e.g. for the Fuckparade.   
After graduating from the Ernst Busch in 1998, he consciously chose to continue working as an independent choreographer in Berlin. Right from the start, he received much critical acclaim and numerous invitations to festivals for his innovative dance style and minimalist, rigorously composed, discursive dance dramas.   
In 2007, he founded the agency BERLIN GOGOS with "ehrliche arbeit – freelance office for culture” as a way to commercially market contemporary dance and address the economic situation of contemporary dancers today.   
His works consistently deal with topics that reference issues currently discussed in society at large, but that also directly pertain to and affect the art form of dance.
Source : Christoph Winkler
More information : http://www.christoph-winkler.com/

Speak Boldly : The Julius Eastman Dance Project

Artistic direction / Conception : Christoph Winkler

Choreography : Christoph Winkler

Choreography assistance : Zen Jefferson

Set design : Valentina Primavera

Original music : Zafraan Ensemble & Guests

Additionnal music : Clemens Hund-Göschel

Video conception : Walter Bickmann

Costumes : Raki Fernandez

Technical direction : Claes Schwennen

Production / Coproduction of the choreographic work : A production by Company Christoph Winkler. Funded by Hauptstadtkulturfonds, the Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa und the Augstein-Stiftung. Media partner: taz.die tageszeitung

Production / Coproduction of the video work : Tanzforum Berlin - tanzforumberlin.de

Duration : 1:10

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