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Saturday February 9th, the CaDance festival closed with a rave dance music performance in a filled-to-capacity Theater aan het Spui. It was a fitting and characteristic conclusion to this edition of the festival with such a great diversity of performances. This edition’s theme was New Stories and yet again there was ample proof that dancers and dance makers manage to find exciting new forms for what they wish to share with the public.   

CaDance is a gift

In her opening speech, Minister Van Engelshoven called the festival ‘a gift’ for a wide audience that, because of the festival can to get to know modern dance, and hopefully, get as excited as she is after seeing it. She also called the festival a gift for and audience of connoisseurs and professionals who find enough new developments to surprise them again and again. ‘Giving space to young creatives’, an important part of CaDance’s mission, ‘forms precisely the heart of my policy’.

Diversity of the program

For the nineteenth time, CaDance showed current developments in the rich landscape of Dutch dance with a program including no less than 12 world premieres and two Dutch premieres. This edition of the festival was characterized by an enormous diversity in how stories can be told through the body. It reflects the fact that talent development knows many inspiring forms in the Netherlands. CaDance laid great emphasis on the personal urgency of the creatives; this resulted in performances with a pronounced personal signature and social relevance.

Special attention was focussed on new developments in urban dance that found a more than ample forum with premieres by Sarada Sarita, Xclusiv Company, Junadry Leocaria, Simon Bus and the European partnership project Mind Ur Step. With this urban focus in the program, CaDance managed to get the attention of a new, young audience, drawing them into the theatre.

A notable feature in this edition was that creatives often used the space to explore the other or the relationship with the other and to identify it explicitly. Various choreographers such as Amos Ben-Tal, Astrid Boons, Shailesh Bahoran, Charlotte Edmonds, Roberto Zappalà, Hilde Elbers, and Heather Ware and the aforementioned urban dance makers Sarada Sarita, Xclusiv Artistry, Junadry Leocaria made tangible in how far this relationship defines our present condition. It was also the subject of the duet They/Them by the newcomers, choreographers Christian de Donder and Sedrig Verwoert who were the first to be awarded The new Leo Spreksel Award for promising talent.

 

05 Mar 2019


Interview with Emanuel Gat by Veerle Corstens

Choreographer Emanuel Gat will be creating NEXT for ICK, but what this performance will look like is something he doesn't have a clear picture of yet. Gat enters the studio with an idea and comes out with a performance that's created largely by the dancers themselves.

As a child, Gat was always surfing and he considers it a sport that's all about dialogue: 'A wave is quite a dynamic entity. It moves with a speed and shape that you cannot influence. On your surfboard you'll have to work with the wave and channel the surprising energy of the water; this forces you to always be in the moment.' According to Gat choreography works much the same: he enters the studio with an idea and then rides with the input of his dancers. He is fascinated by how the bodies respond to his directions, but also to the music and to each other. Gat started out as a conservatory student, but switched to dance after just three months because he found the body to be the perfect instrument for expressing himself: 'It's the most direct medium, no need to translate, you are your ideas. This immediacy seems like a very convenient thing to me.'


© Alwin Poiana

Translating intimate information into dance

How that work in practice? Gat may ask his dancers to choose someone they know lots of things about and to write down all the intimate knowledge they have of this person. Then they must translate this information to movement. 'That allows me to see how the dancer moves. I never tell the dancers where exactly they should stand, or how they should move. I don't instruct them to use a particular style, most importantly their intention must be clear.' His choreography is ultimately the visualization of the decisions and the behaviour of the dancers: they respond and show what moves them.' Gat compares it to the baking of a pie: 'You can follow a recipe and yet the pie you bake will taste different every time. I give my dancers a recipe, but it's only in the studio that we realize what the flavour and texture will be.'

The power of standing still for a moment - literally

Gat didn't always operate this way; in his early years he worked out his choreography to a T before he engaged with dancers. But by now he has realized that his job is to pull a choreography from inside the dancers. It's much more interesting to watch how dancers respond to his questions than to spell out the answers to them: 'I don't need to review copies of myself.' So, he devises a system which he tries out on his dancers, as it were. His favourite approach is to start with a group of unfamiliar dancers to observe how they react to his method. It's only then that he knows if his idea works. 'You can compare it to a game play: if you take a ball to a group of children who never played football before, you will have little trouble explaining the game to them because the system of football is quite coherent. You can have better or lesser quality, but everyone can easily learn to play and have lots of fun. I try similarly to devise a choreographic system that's so coherent, that anyone could perform it.'


© Alwin Poiana

Of course he also gives directions like that the instances when a dancer holds still are at least as important as the dancing proper. 'Just think of a meaningful silence in a conversation or a rest in music; they highlight other parts and help to balance the choreography. When you go from stillness back to motion it has an enormous impact.'

Sunset

Gat discovers what works together with his dancers and so the same choreography can be completely different with another group of dancers. He does take notes of what he has done and what directions he has given. That way he is able to conserve and reproduce his choreographies. However, he doesn't work with themes. 'Spectators will undoubtedly glean certain themes from my work, but the work itself is nearly passive. It's a bit like a sunset: everyone can watch the sunset and have a completely different response to it. And the sunset itself doesn't give a shit whether you delight in it, or not.'

NEXT will be performed at CaDance on Thursday, 7 February at HNT Theater a/h Spui. More info & tickets

30 Jan 2019


There’s something of a paradox in New Stories as a theme for a dance festival. Say stories and you think of something conveyed in words. Stories help us to understand our lives and the world around us, precisely because they give us the words to speak of our lives. Dance, on the other hand, is an art form without words. Dance stories don’t explain, order or interpret the world. And yet dance stories help us to understand our lives and the world around us, precisely because they manage to express that which cannot be captured in words.

The key to this other way of understanding is in our bodies. There lies a treasure trove of knowledge that we draw upon, time and again, intuitively or otherwise, with non-verbal communication as an obvious example. Dance, being the art form of the body, uses this source of knowledge as no other, and at the same time refreshes it with new input. The stories told through dance are like the antennae of an insect: they probe the world around us and translate what they find through the body. Dance sensibilizes: for the sensual, the irrational, and the imagination; for emotions, contradictions, silence, dreams, desires, transience. It sensitizes us to the unlimited number of grey tints that make all boundaries porous. Dance stories are a mirror of the complexity and fluidity in our lives – and prepare us to be able to deal with them. This last aspect is important to remember. In a time when the susceptibility to populist simplifications is on the rise, the new stories that the artists of CaDance add to the public debate have an enhanced political significance, precisely because of its appeal to empathy and openness for that which is not simple and unambiguous.


They/Them - Christiaan De Donder & Sedrig Verwoert - 8 & 9 February | @ Casper Kofi

For the artists, the lack of words opens up possibilities to broach subjects that we in the Netherlands certainly feel inhibited talking about. The choreographers in the CaDance festival feel an urgency to speak in their performances of the soul; the experience of time; the liberation from all dogma; the relationship between mother and child; archetypes and thinking in labels; murder as part of our humanity; self-presentation and loss of identity; acceptance of death and continual transformation; willpower and courage; feminine anger and sensuality; the need for safety and danger; co-existence within circles of power; loneliness; depression; racism; machismo and homophobia; and the irresistible attraction of ecstasy.

A focus in the festival program is what I would call the urban momentum: after a development period of 40 years, urban dance, which has branched out into an enormous diversity of styles, has grown into an established genre in the performing arts. It also entails an accentuation of artistic ambitions that urban dance as well as the theatre landscape in general benefits from, especially because with each new urban style, a new body language emerges with which young artists can tell their new stories.


Hope & Heavy Metal - Sigrid Stigsdatter Mathiassen - 5 & 6 February | @ Thomas Lenden 

And as always with art, these are stories that are only partially made by the artists, and then completed by the audience. Ultimately, the public decides what a story means to them. You could compare the impact of dance stories to a massage. A skilled person works wordlessly during one hour on your body. Sometimes it’s pleasant, sometimes not at all. But something happens to you and at the end of that hour you feel better, stronger, and healthier, with renewed energy to deal with life’s challenges. What you do with this better, stronger, and healthier body is not for the masseuse to tell. That’s up to you – as your freedom and as your responsibility.

Stacz Wilhelm
Artistic leader Korzo productions & CaDance

07 Jan 2019


Today the ticket sales of CaDance start with a festive ticket promotion!  The premiere festival for contemporary dance in the Netherlands will take place from January 25 thru February 9 2019 in Korzo and HNT Theater aan het Spui. This edition of the multi-facetted festival reflects the almost boundless diversity and freedom with which artists currently cross styles, disciplines, and perspectives. Many dance styles are represented in performances by young makers as well as leading choreographers. With the festival theme New Stories, CaDance highlights new stories told in the language of the body: by today’s artists for today’s public about the world we live in today. Enjoy all the wonders that dance has to offer during CaDance and let yourself be surprised, enchanted, and inspired to making New Stories!

Rockin’ around the christmas tree?
Give CaDance as a gift!

As a special offer for the Holiday Season, you can order tickets online with a festive discount.This promotion is valid until 31 December 2018. The €2,- online discount will be doubled temporarily to €4,- on the performances and package deals.* All tickets will be festively wrapped and delivered to your home. All you have to do is place them under the Christmas tree.

View the entire program on cadance.nl and order tickets with the special holiday discount now.

* When ordering tickets, choose the price marked as 'Feestdagenactie'. The discount only applies to the regular price and cannot be combined with other discounts. Not valid for the workshops and performance installation Seconds by OFFProjects. The last shipping-date before Christmas will be on 20 December 2018.

28 Nov 2018


25 January - 9 February 2019 in The Hague

The 19th edition of the CaDance festival shows the current developments in the rich Dutch dance scene with a program that includes no less than 11 world premieres and 2 Dutch premieres. From 25 January thru 9 February, leading and up-and-coming dance makers share their perspective on the world with a wide-ranging audience. The festival opens with two world premieres by prominent Dutch choreographers: Samir Calixto and Ryan Djojokarso. With the festival theme New Stories, CaDance highlights new stories told in the language of the body: by today’s artists for today’s public about the world we live in today. The festival theme is also completely interwoven into the popular 4x4 that takes the public on a dance route through The Hague.

This edition of the multi-facetted CaDance festival reflects the almost boundless diversity and freedom with which artists currently cross styles, disciplines, and perspectives. Many dance styles are represented in performances by young makers as well as leading choreographers. The 4x4 program harbours exclusively young choreographic talent that was invited to share their personal New Stories. The stately 19th century Archipelbuurt in The Hague forms a stark contrast with the four makers who have their roots in a diversity of dance styles: vogueing/waacking (Junadry Leocaria), contemporary dance (Zahira Suliman), breakdance (Simon Bus), and Indian dance (Poernima Gobardhan).

Opening with world premieres by Ryan Djojokarso and Samir Calixto
CaDance opens 25 January with two world premiere by Samir Calixto and Ryan Djojokarso. In his work, Djojokarso proceeds from a fascination for human relationships and social behaviour. In Mom:Me, he explores the fragility of the bond between mother and child. Calixto completes his diptych based on the ever-topical philosophy of Nietzsche that transcends fundamental oppositions such as good and evil and man and woman, in order to put human potential in a broader perspective. After the lyrical M for five men from 2017, follows W for five female dancers.

Other premieres
Also premiering in the festival are new productions by: Stephen Shropshire (Cantata), Dunja Jocic (The Protagonist), Astrid Boons (Fields), Sarada Sarita (Q4) and the installation Seconds by Amos Ben-Tal/OFFprojects. International performances that premiere in The Netherlands are: Mind Ur Step by Roots & Routes (in co production with MAAS td (NL), KVS (BE), R&R Cologne (DU) en CIE Racines Carrées (FR), and Liederduett, by Compagnia Zappalà Danza (IT). The latter company is part of the European Danse Qui Danse Network, which Korzo initiated together with several partners in 2017.

Urban Stories
One of the important developments shown by CaDance 2019 is the breakthrough of the second generation of urban dance makers, impatient to storm the theatres with their new stories. With its multiplicity of new styles, urban dance is a catalyst of innovation in contemporary dance. Urban choreographers making their debut in the festival are: Sarada Sarita, Simon Bus, Junadry Leocaria and Xclusiv Artistry. Roots & Routes present the Dutch premiere of the European urban project Mind Ur Step with 11 dancers from France, Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands that made a performance with ground-breaking choreographers Kader Attou (FR), Nabil Ouelhadj (FR) and Lloyd Marengo (NL).

Tickets sales for the CaDance Festival start end of November. At that time the complete program will also be announced. 

22 Nov 2018
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