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To celebrate the Polish Culture Year in Brazil 2016, the Art Stations Foundation, the Adam Mickiewicz Institute and the Vivadança Festival in Salvador de Bahia, Brazil have developed an artistic and research project on Polish choreographer and dancer Yanka Rudzka, a pioneer of contemporary dance in Brazil. The project constitutes a key feature of the Vivadança International Festival 2016, one of the major performing arts events in the country. The project includes a two-day seminar on Yanka Rudzka and her work. Rudzka, who lived in Brazil in the 1950s, exerted a significant influence on contemporary Brazilian dance, yet her life and artistic work remain largely unknown. The seminar intends to present Rudzka?s life and work, as well as memories of her, in a wider context of the art of dance.


On Friday and Saturday 29?30 April 2016, Teatro Vila Velha  in Salvador presents the premiere of Yanka Rudzka Project: Leavening, a choreographic project inspired by Rudzka?s artistic explorations and developed over a three-week residency of nine Polish and Brazilian dancers. As the starting point, the artists used the basic vocabulary and narratives of two non-stylised traditional dances, the Polish oberek and the Brazilian samba de pé.


At first glance very different, the two dances, when practised and analysed, also in an ethnochoreological perspective, reveal many shared features, serving as an inspiration for an exciting choreographic journey. The project  focuses on the meeting of two communities, giving priority to the process, not to the end product, or the performance. The choreography explores and celebrates community and the ecstatic and transformative aspect of dance, so often overlooked in contemporary choreographic practice.


//We meet in the practice. And we practice the meeting.

Repeating the gestures, we delve into the presence.

And transform the future.

We?re leavening.//




The presentations will be accompanied by workshops and master classes run by Polish choreographers, providing an opportunity for exchange of experience and launching long-term collaboration of the two countries? artistic communities.


The Vivadança Festival will also feature other productions from Art Stations Foundation by Grażyna Kulczyk: on 27 April, Niżyński. Święto snów (Nijinski. The Rite of Dreams), the winner of the Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage award for best performance at the Polish Dance Platform 2014, choreographed by Sławomir Krawczyński, Anna Godowska and Tomasz Wygoda; and on 28 April, Agata Siniarska?s Śmierć 24 klatki na sekundę (Death 24 Frames per Second) and Agata Maszkiewicz?s Polska (Poland).


Seminar programme

Theatre of Movement School of Dance at the Federal University of Bahia (Escola de Dança da UFBA)


28 April 2016


9 am

The story of a dancer of two cultures: Yanka Rudzka between Poland and Brazil


Participants: Prof. Lucia Mattos (Federal University of Bahia), Prof. Maria Claudia Alves Guimar?es (Federal University of Pernambuco)


10 am

 Traces of memory: a few words about Yanka Rudzka?s choreographic work


Participants: Prof. Lia Robatto (Federal University of Bahia), Prof. Maciej Rożalski (Centre for Culture, Languages and Applied Technologies of the Federal University of Recôncavo da Bahia)



29 April 2016


9 am

The history of expressionist dance in Poland and Brazil

Participants: Prof. Carmen Paternostro (Federal University of Bahia), Anna Królica (Poland)


10 am

 Yanka Rudzka?s heritage and contemporary dance in Bahia

Participants: Prof. Lia Robatto (Federal University of Bahia), Prof. Dulce Aquino (Federal University of Bahia), Prof. Marta Saback (Federal University of Bahia)


11 am

 Erudite and popular: the avant-garde in Bahia

 Participants: Prof. Antônio Risério


Prof. Maciej Rożalski (Centre for Culture, Languages and Applied Technologies of the Federal University of Recôncavo da Bahia) will be the seminar?s host.





Yanka Rudzka Project: Leavening


concept: Joanna Leśnierowska

composition: Janusz Orlik/Joanna Leśnierowska

in collaboration with dancers

dance: Anderson Danttas, Uandson Glauber, Sinha Guimaraes, Korina Kordova, Agnieszka Kryst, Janusz Orlik, Jônatas Raine, Paweł Sakowicz, Neemias Santana

dramaturgy and lighting: Joanna Leśnierowska

soundscape: Janusz Orlik

research assistance: Maciej Rożalski

technical production:  Łukasz Kędzierski

graphic design: Michał Łuczak

production: Fernanda Veiga

project coordination: Mikołaj Maciejewski


More information on Yanka Rudzka in Maciej Rożalski?s article:



Festival website:



The project is financed by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute.


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