DANCE ON | ENSEMBLE - YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN ME DANCING WALTZ - RABIH MROUÉ
Anna Herrmann, Emma Lewis,
Christine Kono, Marco Volta
DANCE ON / DIEHL+RITTER
Onassis Stegi (Athens),
Nationales Performance Netz, coproduction fund for dance, funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media
DANCE ON is an initiative by DIEHL+RITTER gUG funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.
8 November 2019,
Onassis Stegi, Athens
seasons 19/20, 20/21
YOU SHOULD HAVE SEEN ME DANCING WALTZ
What does a war leave in its wake? How does a human body rise up as a wall? Rabih Mroué - political, harsh, poetic - creates a choreography that treats a trauma shared by many. The work of the celebrated Rabih Mroué is a magnifying glass that, through his own experiences of war and political struggle, reminds us that trauma is common to all, and so subjective that it can’t be forgotten.
A mature, multi-layered and moving work that cleverly and skilfully transfers images of violence and longing for humanity into the bodies and thus makes them directly experienceable for the audience. Annette Stiekele, Hamburger Abendblatt, 16 November 2019
"Art should not be activist. Art is a platform to think. A platform to question ourselves, to question our beliefs. It's not to give conclusions, it's a place where we put doubts on our thoughts, on our ideas. It's to create a dialogue, a debate, a conversation." Rabih Mroué
“You should have seen me dancing waltz” is an exploration of the concept of the wall as “protection” but also as a border between “inside” and “outside,” the “personal” and the “public,” in which the dancer’s skin also becomes the vehicle for an allegory. Rabih Mroué himself has said: “The body of the dancer as a wall to project from inside to outside and from outside to inside; transparent with its opaqueness. Could it be true that the skin is a demarcation line between the out and the in? And if yes, then is there a war between the two sides? A civil war?” The human body goes under the microscope in Rabih Mroué’s painful but always poetic way.
Rabih Mroué: "This dance piece will investigate the idea of the wall in relation to a dancer’s body through the border-wall notions on the one hand and the skin of a human body on the other hand and both as a separation between the so-called “outside” and “inside”, between the “private” and the “public, between “here” and “there”.
The wall as a promise for providing us a shelter and security, a fence that protects us from enemies and from illness; from death.
The skin as a malleable wall for the body and rigid invisible border for traditions, taboos and habits.
When does it close and when does it open?
What thickness? What color of skin? What scars? What age? How does it change within time? When does it collapse?
Invisible walls inside the body and inside the city.
Resistance and time.
Dead thick skin.
The body of the dancer as a wall to project from inside to outside and from outside to inside; transparent with its opaqueness. Could it be true that the skin is a demarcation line between the out and the in? And if yes, then is there a war between the two sides? A civil war?”
Rabih Mroué, born in Beirut in 1967, is actor, director, author and ranks among the most important Lebanese contemporary artists. He is also editor of the Lebanese magazines “Kalamon” and “The Drama Review”, as well as co-founder and board member of the Beirut Art Center Association (BAC). Rabih Mroué works at the interface of performance and visual arts. His productions deal with the political situation in Lebanon and frequently combine everyday real material with self-created fictive narration. Rabih Mroué frequently works with Lina Majdalanie. His performances, such as “The Inhabitants of Images” (2008), “Photo-Romance” (2009), “33 Rounds and a few seconds” (2012) as well as most recently “Riding on a cloud” (2014), have been represented at theaters and festivals around the world. His work “The Pixelated Revolution” (2012) was displayed at Documenta 13. During the 2015/16 season Rabih Mroué staged “Ode to Joy”, his first production at the Münchner Kammerspiele. As part of Spielart, the Münchner Kammerspiele are also presenting “Riding on a cloud”. In February 2017, the retrospective “Image War Machine” took place at the Münchner Kammerspiele. During the retrospective, Rabih Mroués work “Rima Kamel” was shown for the first time. “Rima Kamel” is still in the Repertoire of the Münchner Kammerspiele.
Rabih Mroué has a strong connection to the Dance On Ensemble. In 2016 he created “Water between three hands” with the company, followed by “Elephant” in 2018. He was also one of the three stage musicians in "Berlin Story" (August 2019).
The DANCE ON | ENSEMBLE was founded in 2015 by the Berlin-based cultural non-profit organisation Diehl+Ritter as part of the Dance On initiative that celebrates the artistic excellence of dancers aged 40+ and explores the relationship between dance and age both on stage and in society. Working with internationally renowned choreographers and directors including among others Rabih Mroué, Deborah Hay, Lucinda Childs and Jan Martens, the Dance On Ensemble is developing a repertoire of ground-breaking and challenging contemporary dance works. Its aim is to create a solid base for a rich and ambitious future repertoire for dancers 40+.
As a member of the Dance On Ensemble since the beginning of the project, Ty Boomershine is responsible for its artistic direction since 2019. Further members of the Dance On Ensemble are: Gesine Moog, Emma Lewis, Tim Persent, Miki Orihara, Christine Kono, Anna Herrmann, Marco Volta, Candas Bas, Lia Witjes Poole and Jone San Martin – all of them are professional dancers between the ages 43 to 71 who have danced in leading companies, among them Lucinda Childs Dance, Ballett Frankfurt, Martha Graham Dance Company and Cullberg Ballet.
DANCE ON has created strong alliances with co-production partners – on a national and international level, among them Kampnagel Hamburg, tanzhaus nrw, Berliner Ensemble, Sadlers Wells London, Holland Dance Festival, ONASSIS STEGI Athens, Belgrade Dance Festival, and ADC - Association pour la Danse Contemporaine Genève. These alliances will ensure the DANCE ON concept is implemented sustainably and make an active contribution to establishing a dance repertoire 40+.