World premiere montpellier danse festival 07
dance yoann demichelis, herman diephuis, julien gallée-ferré, jung-ae kim, natacha kouznetsova, maud le pladec, i-fang lin, éric martin, rachid sayet
For this new work, I would like to draw on a conspicuous form in the history of dance and music: the unison.
Choreographic unison, which is still widespread, elicits a sense offascination. It is used even nowadays to create spectacular endings toall kinds of events, military or paramilitary, processions, parades aswell as carnivals, classical ballet, operetta and opera, musicalrevues, chorus lines (majorettes, cheerleaders). I remember how in the80s, during the contemporary dance explosion in France, it was arelatively taboo form among the dance community, but could neverthelessbe used to produce spectacular effects at the end of a show. It wasdying out and disappearing as a glorious form, and giving way todeconstruction and reorganization of space.
Classical dance, through the “corps de ballet” continues to exploit theunison for a very specific aim: to highlight one of the stars orsoloists by deploying a spectacular and representative array. Hollywooddance in the 50s also used this supernumerary technique to create acloning effect. The showgirls all look alike, same measurements, andpurport to epitomize the canon(s) of beauty back then (water balletscenes by Busby Berkeley, Esther Williams etc…).
In this project, I would like to explore the unison from a standpointthat is both critical and jubilatory. The notion of unison will notjust be considered as a self-contained dance mode; it will be developedas part of a spatial geography, a space to be constructed or destroyed(individuals united in a common space), where the subject interrelateswith its environment, where space is in unison with gestures. This willunleash a set of questions and relationships that are at work betweensubject and environment. Is our connection with the environment amirage, an ongoing illusion?
The dancer, somewhat swallowed by the surrounding space, will play onthis ambivalence, embodying distinctiveness or else an element that ispart of the whole, an ensemble that constitutes him.
The choreography will be shaped around a production of gestures, fromthe tiny all the way to the gigantic. Unisons within unisons, as aform, will be explored through constant reconfiguration comparable to amusic score, generating its own poetical mechanics.
The idea underlying this project is to reinterpret an outmodedaesthetic form in order to question it, to pull it out of its originalcontext, and to draw it into a meaningful adventure. As choreographicdesign, it will be within reach of all without any hierarchy, since itis has deviated and departed from its spectacular goal.
To emphasize the unison of gestures and motions, there will be a sortof live commentary, like a joyful counterpoint that will either clarifyan action in progress (magnifying effect) or else set up a shift intime (dissociation effect). The soundtrack might even bear resemblanceto a surveillance device that positions the subject within a context, alocation, an environment, that can be either hostile orfriendly.
The music by Hungarian composer Ligeti will by and large be treated ina lighthearted manner. Music and stage design will make up a poeticalensemble, and I wish to link this to a world of mock naturalism, areconstructed garden landscape, an artificial staging of controllednature.
We are clumsily out of tune with the world's unison. We try to clutchat the rhythm of a world that surpasses us, through differing,shifting, framing, idiorrhythmia and arrhythmia. We try to adaptourselves to an increasingly hostile and fast environment, its meaningever harder to grasp and discern. The point is to bear witness, tocompel action out of matter, to search for possible entryways.
a show by mathilde monnier
scenography annie tolleter
sound realization olivier renouf
light design éric wurtz
costume design dominique fabrègue assisted by laurence alquier
artistic advice herman diephuis
dance notation enora rivière
dance performance yoann demichelis / herman diephuis / julien gallée-ferré / jung-ae kim / natacha kouznetsova / maud le pladec / i-fang lin / éric martin / rachid sayet
production festival montpellier danse 07 / théâtre de la ville - paris / festival d'automne - paris / culturgest - lisbonne / steirischer herbst - graz / la halle aux grains - scène nationale de blois / centre chorégraphique de montpellier languedoc-roussillon
acknowledgment au théâtre des 13 vents - centre national dramatique de montpellier languedoc-roussillon
duration of the show 62'
film director valérie urréa
editing of video clip vidéo karim zeriahen
updating january, 19th, 2011