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Altro Canto I


Choreography: Jean-Christophe Maillot
Music: Claudio Monterverdi, Biagio Marini, Giovanni Girolamo Kapsberger
Music played by the Ensemble Akademia conducted by Francoise Lasserre
Costumes: Karl Lagerfeld
Scenography: Rolf Sachs
Duration : 38 min

«It has been a while since I last worked with a musical style whose only aim would be visual resonance. The music of Monteverdi, with its kinetic power, offers me a space open to the senses, to oppositions and deviations and allows me to suggest choreography as a science of perception, perception as a place of movement and of passage - an interior journey which produces the vibration of space and sound in resonance with the physical wave of the dancers. With Monteverdi, we are not in the psychology but in the all encompassing emotion, the trembling, the constant movement from one emotion to the other. To grasp that without stopping it or rigidifying it, to enter into the tension, harness the flux, the jolts, the discordances, to remain sensitive to it, is the choreographic challenge here.

The arch of candles, which constitutes a kind of setting is a gentle light which is almost liturgical. It underlines the architecture of the body, marks the postures, the accents, the states, the motifs drawn by the limbs of the dancers and intensely focuses the regard on the details, the curve of the movement. Its flickering and its folds, like the regard, stops in statue like form, on the fold of a gesture, the ribbed aplomb of a dress or the grimace of a gargoyle.
The music of Monteverdi, with its dialectic, changing and mobile in gesture, in technique, and in form and colour, which creates harmony by juxtaposing opposites, also brings to my mind the masculine/feminine duality which makes up each person. Again, I think of cathedral architecture, of these imposing monuments where force and mastery intensify the weightlessness and the impression of a certain fragility. The dancer more than anyone else is able grasp this polyphony which exists within each individual, these different textures which each person experiences intimately but which he often embodies as force fields which are harmful and which exclude.

This music, because it does not itself dance, requires that the dancers go to the extremes of themselves, of their work as artists, that they find their own colour, and beyond formal virtuosity, search the texture, the living fibre of their body, passionate, rich and complex, like the music which passes through them. It is not a question of simply "making" some movements, but of letting these movements become, of listening to what this music calls to within which is fundamental, of making these sonorous moods heard, of sharing an intimate experience, of letting go to the effusion so many secrets about themselves.
They are the ones who write the poem. I only bring it to life.»
Jean-Christophe Maillot 

Main Stage 1 Teatralnaya ploschad (1 Theatre Square), Moscow, Russia
New Stage Bol'shaya Dmitrovka Street, 4/2, Moscow, Russia
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