Paul Blackman & Christine Gouzelis
Fragile Matter was created during an Artist in Residency in Hong Kong and was edited, developed and re-enacted by Jukstapoz with dancers from SEAD’s company BODHI PROJECT during an intensive artistic collaboration focusing on the integration of performativ and theatrical elements in contemporary dance. The European premiere took place in the frame of the New Faces New Dances festival in Salzburg in February 2016.
What makes Jukstapoz’s choreography so original is not only that Fragile Matter grabs the audience’s attention right from the start, and takes them on a narrative and historical adventure, but also the manner how it skilfully weaves together dance movement and stagecraft. Based around the principals of a true dictatorship (something we see in current world issues) and inspired by Charlie Chaplin’s epic „The Great Dictator“, this piece uses theatre, puppetry, film elements to create a powerful atmosphere that displays a unique identity and craftsmanship in a physical contemporary dance piece.
The clear storyline allows the audience to dive deep into the dramatic plot, and is overwhelmed by an emotional performance. Yet at its core basis Fragile Matter is a brief study of the body as a metaphor: At war between or in unity with. It either concurs the battle, survives trauma or surrenders. Following a journey of both visual and physical landscapes, the group exposes tension through these themes, and experiences the layers of their intimate worlds through their bodies,… they dance in order to speak a language that is unspoken…one that is always there, but broken.
Premiere: February 8, 2016, New Faces New Dances, republic Salzburg Credits: Choreography: Christine Gouzelis & Paul Blackman (Jukstapoz) Performer: Alan Fuentes Guerra, Beno Novak, Federico Valenti / Máté Horvath, Nathalie Baert, Luka Svajda, Nefeli Kadinopoulou-Asteriou, Sami Similä, Young-Won Song Music: Murcof, Ben Frost, Alessandro Scarlatti, Amon Tobin, Jozef Van Wissem, Devo Text: Charlie Chaplin (“The Great Dictator”) Light: Luca Sirviö Puppet design: Dimitris Nassiakos Duration: 30 minutes Production: A production of Jukstapoz and HKAPA Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. A revival of SEAD – Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance. Photos: Bernhard Müller Video: SensoReye Production
“Charly Chaplin’s The great Dictator serves as a draft for this exploration of the human body in the focus of dictatorship and revolution. The choreography, which made collective and embodiment compete against revolt and break out, inspired the audience a lot. Energetic scenes emulating combat training and military drill, alternates with lyrical moments of a danced storm and stress. The thrilling performance was accompanied by a multifarious sound enmeshing tough electro beats with baroque music.” (Salzburger Nachrichten, 10.2.2016)