As part of the international theatre festival Theatre Olympics 2016 ?The World as a Place of Truth?, the ?More Than Theatre? series will include presentations of movement and dance pieces (26-27 October) featuring the disabled. Both presented pieces transcend the generic boundaries of art therapy and constitute autonomous artistic presentations. Rafał Urbacki and Anu Czerwiński?s Protected Species is a movement piece combined with a documentary film shot at the natural and landscape park Żabie Doły, referred to as the Silesian Masuria. Protective mechanisms can be encountered both in Protected Speciesand nature. The characters discover the truth about their bodies at the point of contact between stage performance and real life. Juxtaposed with daily experience, the stage acts as a safe haven, a reserve, the only place where they can honestly (but not without fear) address their identities. Four dancers ? all of them young people with limited movement abilities ? perform against the extraordinary backdrop of the Silesian Masuria natural reserve, home to species that need a protected habitat to survive. The choreography, created specifically for these dancers, presents both physical and acting challenges. Protected Species takes a critical look at how we perceive people with limited movement without resorting to the overused media narratives of ?victim? and ?superhero?. Shot in the natural protected area of Żabie Doły, the so-called Silesian Masuria, Protected Species combines documentary and movement performance. As in the natural world, natural defence mechanisms are on display here. The protagonists discover the truth about their bodies somewhere between stage performance and real life. Unlike their daily experience, the stage offers them a safe haven, a sanctuary, the only place where they can honestly, though not without fear, express their identity.
In their Simulante Bande the Czech companies VerTeDance and the Arche Theatre explore original ways of expression through movement based on the collaboration of a healthy and a physically disabled person. They have aimed to tackle at least a small part of the unexpectedly wide range of problems which disabled people face every day in an effort to lead a ?normal? life. Besides two acclaimed professional dancers Helena Arenbergerová and Petr Opavský, the cast includes two physically disabled performers, Alena Jančíková and Zuzana Pitterová. The show was awarded the audience prize at the 2013 Czech Dance Platform.
The presentation of performances will be accompanied by the meeting Dance ? Building a Community featuring Rafał Urbacki and Magdalena Caprdová, Lukáš Homola, Alena Jančíková, as well as Jan Kratochvíl and Zuzana Pitterová of VerTeDance and Archa Theatre. The axis of the breakfast will be given by the performances Simulante Bande by VerTeDance and Archa Theatre as well as Protected Species by Rafał Urbacki and Anu Czerwiński. In both performances, although they use different aesthetic languages, the reduced movement has helped the performers find new possibilities of expression and human beauty. The examination of the human body, both ?ordinary? as well as that of an alternative motricity has been transformed into a series of actions and stories (difficult, lyrical, sometimes funny), as well as enabled building a community around dance. Here it does not serve to reveal mastery, but rather freedom and comfort, a way to manifest one?s identity and to experience community and creativity in life and art. It enables seeking joy and experience encounter regardless of the physical, social, ethnic and age-related stigmatization. Together with the reflection that although it is easy to discern physical disability, a wrong treatment of oneself and the other can impose invisible limitations, one can ask the question: can art (or dance in this respect) do away with such limitations as fear, prejudice, taboos, and illusions?
The performances not only bring up issues of personal and social limitations, but also pose the question of what life is. Luckily, what we fear in life excites our interest in theatre. On the protected ground of the stage we see solid facts, but they also bring about witnessing the process of liberating oneself from the imprisonment of the body and inner confusion. The stage becomes a sanctuary where the performers and the spectators can share that what is the most hidden and fragile.
The discussion will take place on 27 October (9:30 am) at Barbara: infopunkt, kawiarnia, kultura, ul. Świdnicka 8c..
Magdalena Caprdová is a dancer. She collaborated with Akram Khan on creating the choreography for the London Olympics opening ceremony.
Lukáš Homola is a dancer and student of dance.
Alena Jančíková is the director of the Czech association of paraplegics, facilitating the return to active life of the people on the wheelchair. For her successes in this field she has been awarded the Olga Havlova prize (2013) and the medal of the Czech senate (2015).
Zuzana Pitterová is an actress. She studies in the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague (DAMU). She makes her own original acting and radio projects. For the role in Simulante Bande she achieved the award of the prestigious Czech Dance Platform festival.
Jan Kratochvíl is a musician, co-founder of the band DVA, successful in Czech Republic and abroad. He is the author of music for the performance Simulante Bande by VerTeDance and Teatr Archa.
An intriguing context for the ?More Than Theatre? series and the accompanying discussions may be contributed by the presentation of Pippo Delbono?s Vangelo (Gospel), featured in the main series of the festival. Delbono?s theatre pieces have for years involved persons with various degrees of (physical and mental) disabilities, whose personal stories, bodies and movement tendencies lie at the foundation of Delbono?s artistic research. The latest piece by the Italian artist takes its origin from the suggestions of the music composed by Enzo Avitabile, from poetical suggestions, and from the memories of the Croatian actors and dancers who, with their experience and professionalism, will put on stage themselves, their stories and their lives, often deeply marked by the traumatic events of a cruel war that has reshaped the history, places and boundaries of their native land; the boundaries that during the creation of Vangelo were overtaken by huge masses of people fleeing terrible wars in search of shelter in the Old Continent.
The piece will be presented on 26-27 October (8 pm) at the ATM Bielany Stage. Free transportation has been arranged for the spectators.
On 26 October (noon) the Wrocław Puppet Theatre will host a meeting with Pippo Delbono, organized as part of the ?Truth and Nothing But the Truth? series. The word ?actor? is dead ? so believes Pippo Delbono. Dramatic actors who limit themselves to reciting texts of the classics, of contemporary, modernized classics, are not authentic. However, Delbono, inspired by Eugenio Barba?s theatre anthropology, is able to discern in the natural expressiveness of ?life actors? ? as Tomasz Kierńczuk called the characteristic actors of Compagnia Pippo Delbono ? an authenticity toward which an actor otherwise needs to be guided, in order to forget his trained convention.
About the performances of ?More Than Theatre? series:
Wen 26 October 2016, 5 pm
Thu 27 October 2016, 7 pm
Zajezdnia History Centre (Bus Depot), ul. Grabiszyńska 184.
Choreography and performative actions by: Rafał Urbacki
Dancers: Tatiana Cholewa, Radosław Lis, Karolina Stroisz
Light by: Rafał Urbacki, Michał Wawrzyniak
Assistant: Marlena Hermanowicz
Concept and edited by: Anu Czerwiński, Rafał Urbacki
Cinematography by: Anu Czerwiński
Performed by: Tatiana Cholewa, Filip Pawlak, Karolina Stroisz, Katarzyna Szarawara
Narrated by: Karolina Kędziora
Camera assistant ? Piotr Gacek (WRiTv UŚ)
Project coordinated by: laba off | Natalia Starowieyska
Production: ROZBARK Theatre
Media sponsor: TVP Kultura
Premiere:27 June 2014
?Protected species? offers no turgid praise [?]. Instead, there is pride in the physical capabilities of the imperfect bodies which, by the way, are truly impressive.
Alicja Müller | teatralia.pl
Wed 26 October 2016, 7 pm
Thu 27 October 2016, 5 pm
PWST National Academy of Theatre Arts, ul. Braniborska 59.
They live here with us, but we sometimes act as though they were invisible. Sometimes we stare at them as though they were from another planet. We vaguely admire them, vaguely fear them, often we pity them. We hardly know anything about them. They often walk differently. They usually don?t conform to the general illusion of beauty. But their goals are the same as ours: To live a full life. Why do we continue to exclude them? Why is it always ?us? and ?them?? Their acceptance can benefit all of us. We can even get much more than we ever imagined. Let?s introduce ourselves, even ?just for a while? counts!
VerTeDance Company and Archa Theatre
Choreography ? Veronika Kotlíková, Tereza Ondrová
Dramaturgy ? Lukáš Jiřička
Performers ? Magdalena Caprdová, Lukáš Homola, Alena Jančíková, Zuzana Pitterová
Music ? DVA
Light design ? Pavel Kotlík
Costumes and set design ? Masha Černíková
Production ? VerTeDance, danceWATCH (Karolína Hejnová), Archa Theatre
Support ? Praha.eu portal, Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, Nadace Vodafone, METROSTAV a.s.
Premiere ? 29 April 2012
A profound and intelligent piece which entirely captivates the audience, not only in terms of its content, but aesthetically as well.
Johana Mücková | ct24.cz
More about the festival: http://www.theatreolympics2016.pl