“A playground for a group of ten dancers, a place where the forces that lead to movement take their free course, confront each other and grow in power until they create a coherent world.” This is how the Israeli Emanuel Gat introduces his new production, 'Brilliant Corners', whose title is borrowed from Thelonious Monk and whose indicative value is: Emanuel Gat is jazz like Toni Morrison is jazz, like Piet Mondrian is jazz. Both a musician and a choreographer, sensitive to both notes and silence, here he has composed the music for his show for the first time. With his dancers, he has created a moment where the powers of the measure of freedom coexist and where “rules and mechanisms are established only to immediately confront their exceptions”. With cast shadows and brilliant glares, restraint and force, he launches an invitation to share the intensity of the moment.
A warning to all those who love action: the piece 'Brilliant Corners' does not seek to demonstrate or establish something any more than it is about something in particular: it is something in itself. From the start of the play, a pact is made with the spectator: do not try to understand what is happening with words; let yourself be carried away in order to hear more, see more, feel more.
Emanuel Gat became a dancer almost by accident at the age of 23. Not long after his military service, he took part in a workshop lead by the Israeli choreographer Nir Ben Gal. It was a revelation. “Everything happened very quickly. I quit music because I had found a place that suited me through another form of expression. I wanted to dance, so I joined a troupe and started choreographing after a year, and I've continued on that path ever since.” “Quit music”? Not really: when he rehearses, Gat swears that he can hear movement more than see it. He daringly explores all musical territories, navigating between styles and eras like a natural, from Bach to Schubert ('Winterreise', which won him a Bessie Award in 2006), from Mozart to the 'Sacre du Printemps' (Rite of Spring), merging it with salsa, from the English baroque of John Dowland ('Hark!', commissioned by the Opéra National de Paris in 2009), to the electro of SquarePusher and even Xenakis ('Windungen', 2008). A 'Silent Ballet' was therefore the logical culmination to all of this, whereby dance establishes its own score out of the silence. Gat was also 'jazz' in a memorable solo on John Coltrane's My Favorite Things. Far from illustrating music, he restores a radical liberty to it that is by turns tempestuous, introverted, explosive and inert, playing with space and tempo as and when it chooses. It is a way of saying “I come and I go, I kill myself and come back to life: these are a few of my favourite things”. This graceful authority, this intuition for rupture and syncopation, are now put in the hands of ten dancers and pushed to their most scintillating limits, their 'brilliant corners'. Though the title is taken from a Thelonious Monk album, the music is composed entirely by Gat using hundreds of samples taken from different musical worlds, which frame, respond to and confront each other. From Monk Gat has retained not the product but the essence, seizing upon the title, 'Brilliant Corners', where he has found an echo of his own project: “A fine example of what words become when we use them as concrete material. We cannot understand this title literally, yet it generates a perfectly clear meaning.” Around these corners, we find the noteworthy elements of Emanuel Gat's work: the distant imprint of Oriental sensuality, choreographic confidence, sovereign authority and a taste for action that he sums up in one sentence: “On the first day of rehearsals, I only had a very rough idea of a point of departure, but as soon as the starting signal is given, you know that something is going to happen.”
Choregraphy, music and lights : Emanuel Gat
Dancers : Hervé Chaussard, Amala Dianor, Andrea Hackl, Fiona Jopp, Michael Löhr, Pansun Kim, Philippe Mesia, Geneviève Osborne, François Przybylski, Rindra Rasoaveloson
Technical director : Samson Milcent
Brilliant Corners est une commande de Dance Umbrella (Londres), Biennale di Venezia (Venise) et Dansens Hus (Stockholm) au sein du réseau ENPARTS-European Network of Performing Arts qui bénéficie du soutien de la Commission Européenne.
Coproduction Festival Montpellier Danse 2011, Sadler's Wells (Londres), deSingel (Anvers) Avec le soutien de la Fondation BNP Paribas
Video direction : Luc Riolon
Production : 24 images