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Life Story

CCN – Ballet de Lorraine 2002 - Directors : Bourgeais, Isabelle - Faggianelli, Tristan

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

Present in collection(s): Maison de la Danse de Lyon

en fr

Life Story

CCN – Ballet de Lorraine 2002 - Directors : Bourgeais, Isabelle - Faggianelli, Tristan

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

Present in collection(s): Maison de la Danse de Lyon

en fr

Life Story

After you’ve been to bed together for the first time,
without the advantage or disadvantage of any prior acquaintance, 

the other party very often says to you, 

Tell me about yourself, I want to know all about you, what’s your story?
 

And you think maybe they really and truly do, 

sincerely want to know your life story,
and so you light up a cigarette and begin to tell it to them,
the two of you lying together in completely relaxed positions
like a pair of rag dolls a bored child
dropped on a bed.

You tell them your story, or as much of your story,
as time or a fair degree of prudence allows, and they say, Oh, oh,
oh, oh, oh
each time a little more faintly, until the oh is just
an audible breath, and then of course, 

There’s some interruption. Slow room service comes up with a bowl of melting ice cubes, or one of you rises to pee and gaze at himself

with a mild astonishment in the bathroom mirror.

And then, the first thing you know, before you’ve had time to pick up where you left off with your enthralling life story,
they’re telling you their life story, exactly as they’d intended to
all along,
and you’re saying, Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh
each time a little more faintly, the vowel at last becoming
no more than an audible sigh,
as the elevator, halfway down the corridor
and a turn to the left,
draws one last, long, deep breath of exhaustion
and stops breathing forever. Then?
Well, one of you falls asleep
and the other one does likewise with a lighted cigarette in his mouth,
And that’s how people burn to death in hotel rooms." 

Poem taken from In the Winter of Cities by Tennessee Williams  

Copyright © 1956 Tennessee Williams

Source CCN - Ballet de Lorraine programme 2001 - 2002

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 : https://www.armitagegonedance.org/

Bourgeais, Isabelle

Faggianelli, Tristan

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. 

More information : http://ballet-de-lorraine.eu 

Life story

Choreography : Karole Armitage

Interpretation : Christophe béranger, Myrina Branthomme

Original music : Thomas Adès

Costumes : David Salle

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