VOLKSBÜHNE
Berlin

CCN – Ballet de Lorraine: Sounddance
Photo: Laurent Philippe

Tanz im August
Merce Cunningham Centennial: Berlin
23.–25.08.19
main stage

Dance
1 h 40 min, one break

CCN – Ballet de Lorraine: RainForest & Sounddance
DANCE ON ENSEMBLE: BERLIN STORY, A re-imagination of STORY

A cooperation with Tanz im August / HAU Hebbel am Ufer

Tickets via Tanz im August

In 2019 Tanz im August celebrates the 100th anniversary of the birth of the American choreographer Merce Cunningham, who said of himself that he didn’t become a dancer, but rather had always been a dancer. He worked with John Cage for the first time in New York in 1944. In the course of his long career Cunningham created over two hundred works, partly in collaboration with Cage and Robert Rauschenberg, that radically renewed dance. He didn’t rely on an apparently autonomous artistic ego, but rather on playful abstraction and chance procedures. As an inquisitive modernist he was one of the first to use video and computer technologies in dance.

Beneath and between Andy Warhol’s silver clouds, the dancers of the Ballet de Lorraine become graceful hybrid creatures both human and animal in RainForest (1968). Cunningham, who grew up near the rain forests in the state of Washington, translates them here into small gestures, big leaps and movements on the floor – a concentrated, serene world. Sounddance has a different energy. Cunningham created it in 1975 after his fraught collaboration with the Ballet de L’Opéra de Paris. It opposes the uniformity of the ballet: in front of an elegantly draped golden curtain, an ‘organised chaos’ unfolds, accompanied by David Tudor’s driving sound.

Merce Cunningham’s STORY was pioneering in its choreographic games and chance procedures when it was created in 1963. But some of the dance sequences have been lost over the years, and some of the instructions can no longer be understood. Together with the Cunning ham expert Daniel Squire, the DANCE ON ENSEMBLE goes on an expedition of research and rehearsal that combines original and new movement material in their BERLIN STORY. In 1963 Robert Rauschenberg created the set from found objects. His part is now taken by the Berlin artist John Bock. The original music by Toshi Ichiyanagi will be played by Rabih Mroué, Tobias Weber and Mattef Kuhlmey.

24.08.19, 21:00
Foyer
Merce Cunningham – Then and Now
as part of the series of talks On the Sofa

Guests: Ty Boomershine (DANCE ON ENSEMBLE), Thomas Caley & Petter Jacobsson (CCN – Ballet de Lorraine), Patricia Lent (Merce Cunningham Trust), Moderator: Brenda Dixon-Gottschild, English

23.08.19, 19:00

24.08.19, 19:00

25.08.19, 19:00

media

CCN – Ballet de Lorraine: RainForest
Photo: Laurent Philippe

DANCE ON ENSEMBLE: BERLIN STORY, A re-imagination of STORY
Photo: Douglas Jeffery, 1963

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