Education and Training
“We initiated this program with the belief that a normal future is possible for those who find their passion and their place only on stage, in the contemporary.
A semester of training for the mind and body and a semester of creative process in the artistic team of a choreographer; then, the artistic life begins: the presentation of the shows on stages in Romania and abroad. ”
Vava Ștefănescu, Manager of CNDB
“I am very grateful to be involved in this extraordinary project initiated by the National Dance Center of Bucharest and the wonderful colleagues there. It was a dream for me to build a bridge between these often too separate worlds – between the independent scene and the institutional world, and also between the educational staff and the professional field. So it is a great opportunity and at this moment we have brought together a fantastic team of colleagues on the teaching side and now we hope of course to have an equally extraordinary team of participants, to work in depth, to have fun and go together through this journey of artistic exploration. ”
Jan Burkhardt, choreographer, dancer and dance teacher
In the fall of 2019, the National Centre for Dance launched the Academy of Dance and Performance, the only intensive training program dedicated to young dancers and performers in Romania. For the first time, young people who want to pursue a professional career in the field of contemporary dance can benefit from a long-term intensive training, with Romanian and international teachers and choreographers.
In the academic year 2019-2020, a number of 16 young people with potential for performance in contemporary dance, from Bucharest and other cities, went through a learning and mentoring process of two semesters together with experienced choreographers and pedagogues. By involving students in the choreographic productions of 2020, the program has the vocation to integrate young Romanian dancers and performers in the high-level professional circuit.
The CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance started on October 1, 2019, with training activities taking place daily, from Monday to Friday, throughout the academic year 2019-2020. The program includes dance classes and workshops, individual research and study, artist presentations, as well as evaluation and feedback sessions. Throughout the second semester, young dancers participate in artistic creations of contemporary dance. Under the guidance of the best choreographers of the current scene, the students are involved in choreographic group productions, solos and works that aim to transmit the Romanian contemporary dance repertoire. At the end of the program, all the productions will be presented at CNDB and on stages of theaters and artistic centers in Romania.
The Academy’s curriculum was carefully elaborated starting from the profile of the contemporary dancer, in connection with the current practices and aesthetics of the performing arts. In the training process, the experience of participating in the creation and presentation of a show is a fundamental dimension of the program.
The Academy of Dance and Performance focuses on the dimensions of developing dance and movement skills, as well as understanding and deepening the artistic context. All classes and workshops offer an in-depth investigation into the somatic fundamentals and techniques of contemporary dance, create the mental framework for choreographic improvisation and provide tools for research and creation.
The classes, workshops and presentations held at the Academy are supported by artists, pedagogues and theorists in the field of contemporary dance and performing or visual arts such as: Allison Brown, Jan Burkhardt, Carmen Coțofană, Mădălina Dan, Mihaela Dancs, Simona Deaconescu, Valentina De Piante Niculae , Ștefania Ferchedău, Eduard Gabia, Adriana Gheorghe, Raluca Ianegic, Iosif Kiraly, Cosmin Manolescu, Mihaela Michailov, Mihai Mihalcea, Gisela Müller, Virginia Negru, Andreea Novac, Dan Perjovschi, Alexandra Pirici, Willy Prager, Vava Ștefănescu, Raluca Voinea, Sigal Zouk, Noa Zuk.
All our teachers follow a philosophy of dance that considers emotional and physical integrity, values artistic originality and individuality, the ability to take risks and the commitment to work in a group.
The spectrum of methods within these mutual reference principles extends from the contemporary perspective on ballet to experimental anatomy and various approaches to generating and exploring movement, space and time, as well as the relationship with other dancers and audiences.
The next edition of the Academy of Dance and Performance will take place in 2022-2024.
“Our body” is an invitation to an initiatic journey into contemporary dance. It focuses on the connection between thought, body, space and time, wherein participants are encouraged to explore the fluctuations of these parameters through what we call simply – movement.
The different training methods used have their influence in Cunnigham or Release techniques, having as main characteristic the understanding of the body’s functioning mechanisms starting from breathing, skeletal alignment, release of muscle tension, use of gravity and impulse, coordination but also emotional state.
It is a first step towards an examination of one’s own body, as well as one’s own experiences, generating a beneficial and positive environment for the expression and development of bodily abilities. We will build the interior and exterior space by exploring the imagination, stimulating creativity and learning to look at movement as an engine of knowledge.
Photo: Lavinia Pollak
Carmen Coțofană is a freelance artist with ballet studies at the “Octavian Stroia” High School in Cluj Napoca and choreography at the I.L. Caragiale University of Theater and Cinematography of Bucharest. Since 1999 she has participates in various choreographic and performing projects that have been presented in national and international festivals, has studied techniques and body principles in scholarships and professional workshops, has gone through the experience of personal productions, collaborates in theater projects, has developed teaching skills along her academic practice and continues to question every moment of the present time.
Valentina De Piante Niculae
How do we get to dance more effectively? Get coordination, strength, resilience, creativity in motion?
In present times, there is an intertwining of somatics in the study of dance techniques, because the first brings a complex knowledge of anatomy and experiential physiology to amplify the motor and creative potential of the performer.
The condition to become a better dancer depends in my experience as a teacher and choreographer on a better understanding of how bones, joints and muscles work by activating certain patterns, otherwise the risk of wear and tear increases. The Feldenkrais method reveals this scientific perspective that creates connections between body parts and facilitates the construction of a complex inner body image.
The method sets aside current stereotypes about strength, effort, tone, body tension. For Feldenkrais, movement is a complex event, which radiates with very personal paths: it actually means a complex organization between contradictory intentions, emotion, self-image, attention and body organization.
The laboratory will start with a short Awareness through Movement-ATM session of the Feldenkrais® method and will continue with the study of movement and the principles of contemporary dance.
The effects of these explorations will be: enrichment of movement patterns – grounding, spatial orientation, perception of body three-dimensionality, efficiency in movement, differentiation of body parts, lack of muscle effort and locating the center, due to proportional distribution of forces on the skeleton. Therefore, by building and deconstructing actions, we will better understand the shape and function of bones, joints, muscles and we will become aware of a body structure in permanent self-discovery and creation.
Photo: Lavinia Pollak
Valentina De Piante Niculae is a teacher at UNATC, PhD in Theater and Performing Arts, project coordinator, choreographer, researcher and performer.
She is the only teacher in the country with ATM and FI expertise in the Feldenkrais® method, a method of reorganizing neuromotor schemes. She teaches choreographic writing laboratories and somatic education, being invited to various universities and pedagogical research platforms. In 2009 she participated in the event TTT – Teaching the Teachers – Bucharest and in 2013 in TTT – Budapest. In 2015 she gave theoretical lectures enriched by an intense body practice together with the neurologist researcher Dr. Radu Dop. She guided, as a Romanian expert, the European project Tandem Dance, dedicated to blind persons and performers. In 2016 she was one of the [8: tension] choreographers, obtaining a scholarship to ImPulsTanz in Vienna with the performance of M.E.L.T. Motion Emotion and Lateral Thinking, created together with KrootJuurak (dramaturgy) and Eduard Gabia (sound research). In time, she wishes to create an educational, performative and creative platform about consciousness and body, art and neuroeducation, bodily space and public space.
The course (each meeting) will last 4 hours and will be structured in two parts. One in which the body-mind builds choreographic material through a series of exercises aimed at the relationships between the basic coordinates of movement – space, time, energy – and a second part, which will explore the compositional poetics from various situations found together during the course.
During four months, several processes will be questioned with the help of the mind-body: types of memory and their usefulness in various scenic situations, the relationship between sources and resources for generating choreographic material, the body in control and under risk, the body between idea and realization, body image and imaginary body.
Each meeting will launch a theme for the next one. The topic will be worked on individually and presented in the next course. The topics will not always be practical, but will require theoretical or documentary study in the media library.
Foto: Adi Bulboacă
Vava Ștefănescu is a choreographer and dancer with a rich and very diverse artistic experience. She graduated from the “George Enescu” High School of Choreography, has a master’s degree in cultural management – International Artistic Cooperation at the University of Paris VIII UFR Arts, has benefited throughout her career from numerous scholarships, international internships and artistic residencies. She has created over 50 shows, traversing multiple universes and stage approaches, from choreography for theater to the most radical performance forms. Her creations have been successfully presented on stages in Romania or abroad.
The extended pedagogical experience is based mainly on the student’s fine observation, on the potential of each one to generate a unique choreographic material, on the creative uniqueness in conjunction with the specific artistic context. In Vava Ștefănescu’s artistic preoccupations, the transmission has a central place and is a two-way road, a process in a reciprocal system.
1995-2001 UNATC assistant at the Choreography Department, 2004-2007 guest professor at UBB Cluj, Miklos Bacs class. She holds internships in contemporary dance technique, artistic composition or seminars at festivals, dance companies, universities throughout the country and abroad (Irvine University, Drama Department, CA, USA, CESI within UB, Main d’Oeuvre Center for Contemporary Art, Paris, Summer School For Media Science PhD, Mainz et al.)
Awards: Ministry of Culture’s Prize for Choreography for “16 lessons about the disasters of carnal love”; Choreographer of the Year in Istanbul, for the choreography of the show Bacantele (2009, directed by Mihai Mănuțiu); in 2016, the President of Romania awarded her with the Order of “Cultural Merit” with Knight rank, Performing Arts category.
This course is addressed to dancers / performers and / or choreographers and is structured on two main coordinates: research in motion and development of artistic / performative practices.
In a first phase we will try to identify and develop our own way of being in motion, guided by listening, pleasure and desire, we will allow the body to be, to breathe, to dream, to resist thoughts or to fulfill them, quietly or not, accepting everything that is or could become, and then looking for ways to free ourselves from patterns and redefine what is too familiar to us. We will work with guided explorations, in extended sessions, individually or collaboratively, solo or in groups.
In a second part, the attention will move towards the performative, towards navigating personal interests and placing them in a meaningful and significant context. We will focus on performative practices, those we already know or imagine together, and we will try to look at things from different perspectives, always with a fresh attitude, in a constant exchange between doing / presenting, look / observe and give feedback.
We will work simultaneously on several levels – listening, looking, thinking, feeling, acting and reacting, remaining open to receive, process and propose. We will use personal insights to develop our understanding of these practices and talk about these things. Come prepared to share your ideas.
Foto: Alina Ușurelu
Andreea Novac is an independent artist, choreographer and performer. She studied Psychology at the University of Bucharest and then Choreography at the IL Caragiale University of Theater and Cinematography, currently being a doctoral student within the same university.
She is passionate about choreographic creation, artistic education, theoretical and performative discourse, while being a globe trotter of dance shows and performances.
Since 2003, she has traveled extensively to participate in dance workshops around Europe. From 2008, she started creating her own choreographic pieces – Dance a playful body, Pretend we make you happy, About tenderness, 37 minutes of make believe, A truth, a lie and a list of possibilities – which she presented on national and international stages. She has benefited from scholarships and creative residencies throughout the country (Bucharest, Cluj, Bacau) and abroad (Italy, Great Britain, Holland, Luxembourg, Austria, Hungary, France), scholarships for research on movement (Italy) and collaborates with both Romanian or foreign artists.
She participates as a performer or choreographer in European festivals and projects – Explore Dance Festival, Europe in Motion, Romanian Showcase, ArtistNe (s) t – International Contemporary Dance Festival, Romanian Dance Platform, Moving Romania, Dance. Movement. Theater, etc. Since 2008 she is a guest teacher (contemporary dance courses and workshops) at the National Center for Dance Bucharest, Calea Victoriei Foundation, Attitude Balet Studio, Paintbrush Factory in Cuj, Fix Theater in Iași, etc.
In 2017, together with Alina Ușurelu and Irina Marinescu, she founded the Developing Art Association, which runs a series of interdisciplinary programs and projects in the area of contemporary dance and visual arts. Since 2018 she is an associate professor at UNATC – Master of Art Therapy and the University of Pitesti – acting.
A body in hyper-action uses dance techniques and interdisciplinary composition methods in order to create hallucinatory and disruptive micro-universes.
How can we make unpredictable compositions that deconstruct our experience as dancers? How do we think dance will be in the future and where do we place the boundary between rational and irrational?
We will work with chrono-poetic tools in dance, where speed, temporal juxtaposition and interval rethinking profoundly affect movement. We will focus on the intentionality, potentiality and residual energy of the movement, in the desire to create bodies in transition, antibodies and archive-bodies.
The course is structured in a progression and uses creative tools such as: contamination, cognitive uncertainty, tension, accumulation and transfer of information at the performative level. These will be explored through sets of exercises and improvisations on layers, through which we will dissect the relationship between control, intensity and spontaneity.
By approaching a working method based on creating scores, the course prepares dancers to use movement, sound, text and visual cues as elements that make up a reactive body universe. In the last part of the course we will examine and discuss the role of technology in the creative process and in what context we can mediate reality and generate a connective performative experience.
Foto: Ciprian Ciuclea
Simona Deaconescu is a choreographer and experimental film director. She is the founder of Tangaj Collective and the artistic director of the Bucharest International Dance Film Festival. Through her works, Simona explores the crisis of perception in contemporary society and raises questions about the future of the body.
She was selected to carry out her artistic research in international residencies offered by the Gabriela Tudor Foundation, 4Culture Association (RO), Battery Dance Studios New York (USA), TeatrInGestAzione, COORPI, Lavanderia e Vapore (IT), Forum Danca (PT) and La Briqueterie Paris – Val-de-Marne Choreographic Development Center (FR).
She is the holder of the danceWEB scholarship, offered by the Life Long Burning network during the ImPulsTanz Festival (2014, Vienna, AT), designated artist Aerowaves Twenty18 for the show “Counterbody”, holder of the Loikka Award (2018, Helsinki, FI) for the film “Sonder” and selected as Emerging Choreographer by Springboard Danse Montreal (2019, Montreal, CA). In 2016 she received the CNDB Award for her contribution to Romanian contemporary dance.
Her performances and workshops have been presented on national and international tours in Italy, USA, Austria, Turkey, Portugal, Bulgaria, Chile and Lithuania. The two dance short films made by Simona were selected and awarded in the most important profile festivals in Europe, South and North America.
This course aims to explore the dialogue between bodies, ideas, space and sound.
Through different improvisation techniques in movement we will emphasize the awareness of the environment and our own senses, creating together different work scores. We will discover what a motion score means and what role it plays in the composition process, constantly adapting to the needs of our body, to the ideas we will stimulate with the help of the group and to the space that will feed our imagination.
The work sessions will contain some warm-up through different movement techniques with influences from Body Mind Centering, Axis Syllabus, Contact Improvisation, Feldenkrais, followed by improvisation sessions and creation of “scores”. Thus, in an atmosphere of intensive exploration, we will “enter” our bodies discovering how we can use them to outline coherent ideas and to communicate. The dance and improvisation sessions will be accompanied by discussions useful for understanding the composition process.
Last but not least, we will focus on group cohesion and communication, in order to build a performative experience together.
Nu în ultimul rând, ne vom axa pe coeziunea grupului și pe comunicare, cu scopul de a construi împreună o experiență performativă.
Cristina Lilienfeld studied choreography and psychology, constantly looking for the point where the two disciplines meet. In recent years she has collaborated and continues to work with various choreographers and dancers but also with visual artists and musicians as part of several interdisciplinary artistic groups. Her shows “Lay (ers),” Not everyone is a hero “,” Brave deeds “,” Moving Fields “as well as numerous shows in which she dances or for which she signed the choreography:” Group choreography “,” In the body “,” Dancer In The Dark ”,“ The Great Scheme of Things – Fierbinteanu concert ”,“ A Truth A Lie And A List Of Possibilities ”etc. continues to be presented on the stages in Bucharest, around the country and internationally.
In 2016 she was part of the Dance Roads program through which she traveled to five European countries presenting the show Lay (ers). In 2015 she became a member of the PETEC Association, supporting various interdisciplinary productions created for all age groups.
Cristina seeks, both in her artistic activity and in the contemporary dance workshops that she holds to highlight the part of authenticity from any situation she comes in contact with.
Rest, relaxation and recovery play an essential role in the life of any dancer with intense physical activity, sustained for a long time. These should be an integral part of our routine, becoming a habit to help the body respond appropriately to the challenges it is undergoing. The absence of a practice of relaxation, rest and recovery for prophylactic purposes leads in time to accidents, chronic fatigue, inability to concentrate, stagnation and, finally, even to the appearance of diseases.
The practice of movement for over 30 years and, finally, the completed somatic and refloxogen massage courses led choreographer Farid Fairuz to generate an experimental recovery practice through self-massage, in which the body is the best guide. to the existing problems, being at the same time the one through which action is taken to solve them.
The course facilitates access to a series of self-massage maneuvers and relaxation practices adapted to each participant, their practice leading in time to beneficial effects: improving blood and lymph circulation, direct impact on damaged muscle fibers, elimination of toxins that accumulate during exercises, improving joint and muscle mobility, but also effects like the release of serotonin and endorphins in the blood, raising mood, reducing anxiety, relaxation and improving concentration and mental acuity.
Until the fictionalization of his own biography through which he became Farid Fairuz (2010), the artist Mihai Mihalcea was one of the most active in the field of contemporary choreography in Romania since 1989. He played a key role in many of the initiatives that led to international recognition of Romanian contemporary dance and the establishment of structures and institutions that have become landmarks in this field. Between 2006 – 2013 he was director of the National Dance Center of Bucharest, and since 2019 he is Director of Programs and Projects within the same institution.
In 2006 he was nominated for the “Paris – Europe 2006” Award by the Maison d’Europe et d’Orient in Paris.
Farid Fairuz has been an artist in residence at the Tanzquartier Wien, National Center of Dance Paris, Hebbel Theater Berlin, Center National de Franche-Comte Chorégraphique of Belfort, La Manufacture, Atelier du Rhin – Dramatic Regional Center, Colmar.
In 2013-1014 he was a fellow of the Berlin Academy of Arts. In 2014 he co-curated the “Good Guys Only Win in Movies” festival in Hebbel am Ufer, Berlin. He has created and / or presented performances and choreographic works in: France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Great Britain, Hungary, Estonia, USA, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Portugal, Poland, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland and Slovenia.
Contact Improvisation is a form of dance and improvisation that involves both the body and the mind. During this course we will try to develop a thinking physicality. We will seek to understand what is behind our dance. What are the stimuli that move us? We will investigate the impact of physical forces on movement: gravity, inertia, momentum, friction force, balance, but also other internal forces: attention, the ability to observe, to choose, to discern, to name.
The floor will be our first partner for dialogue, investigation and composition. We will then work in a duet, trio and in a group trying to understand together the environment in which we dance in order to articulate movements that make sense in space and in real time. The dance will become both a physical and a conceptual conversation with ourselves, with the space in which we move, with the stage / practice partners and with those who look at us. Through the proposed exercises we will develop a spherical orientation and an extended understanding of how we navigate in space. We will shape and sensitize both the body and the attention to bring clarity, depth and authenticity to the dance and the performative act.
Virginia Negru studies dance and body intelligence with the intensity and passion of a researcher. She discovered the pleasure of moving in unusual ways before she could speak or understand that what she was doing was called dancing.
Although she considers herself rather self-taught, over time she has met special dancers and teachers who have shaped and profoundly influenced her vision of dance and movement in general: Catrina Choate (Contemporary Dance and Feldekrais), Amalia Stinopoulou (Limon Technique), Lelia Marcu (Ballet), Steve Batts and Ursula Laeubli and Benno Voorham and Sybrig Dokter, Scott Wells, Alexandra Soshnicova and Serghei Golovnya, Cyrus Khambatta, Nora Hajos, Nancy Stark Smith, Sveta Bird, Sasha Dodo, Adrian Russi , Susanne Martin, Kira Kirsch (Instant Composition and Contact Improvisation).
She chose to practice and teach Contact Improvisation because it is the form of dance that she understood the hardest and which continues to bring her new questions and challenges. She discovered Contact Improvisation in 2006 at the Bucharest Theater Festival and continued her studies in Europe and the USA.
Currently, together with the PETEC association, she organizes the Contact Bucharest Festival and other projects that use Contact Improvisation as a form of dance, improvisation and movement technique.
This class introduces participants to the practice of Ashtanga Yoga, a dynamic form of Hatha yoga that is based on stabilizing attention on three elements simultaneously (Tristhana): specific breathing, posture (Asana) and focus of gaze (Drishti). The transitions between the positions are made fluid, through sequences of movements synchronized with the breath (Vinyasa). Vital energy (Prana) is accumulated and redirected in the body through muscle activations and physical adjustments, by working with energy bands (Bandha).
We emphasize breathing and alignment, but also the rhythm and flow of movement. Through better control of the body and breathing, we control and calm the mind. Improving flexibility, strength, endurance, balance, physical and mental stability are just some of the benefits of this practice. In time, we come to experience the state of meditation in motion.
Yoga practice is a practice of inward retreat and constant observation, a process of deep self-knowledge, continuous learning, harmonization with ourselves and what surrounds us.
When we give up competitiveness and expectations, we open up and create space for lots of possibilities, which most often surprise us. In the last part of the class, we integrate elements specific to yoga practice in dance improvisation. The quality of the presence given by our total engagement and by letting ourselves be absorbed in what we do, the relationship with the present, training and focusing attention on several things simultaneously, the accumulation and direction of energy are elements we find in both dance and in the practice of yoga, both of them building that state of meditative flow.
Sometimes, both in yoga and in dance, too much emphasis is placed on form, on the surface, looking for perfect images, stopping at that level. In this class, we approach and explore form as a consequence of more subtle, less visible and tangible things that we integrate into our practices.
Mihaela Alexandra Dancs, independent choreographer and dancer, works with artists such as Florin Flueraș, Cătălina Gubandru, Florin Fieroiu, Vava Ștefănescu, Paul Dunca, Doris Uhlich, Rui Catalão, Carmen Coțofană, Mădălina Dan, Cosmin Manolescu, Zan Yamashita, Andreea David. She dances in Bucharest, Cluj, New York, Vienna, Paris, Timișoara, Utrecht, Riga, London, Venice, Prague, Stockholm, Tokyo, Frankfurt, Rome, Iasi, etc. Participates in programs such as Europe in Motion, Solo Performing Commissioning Project, Moving Dialogue, What Next, Emotional Bodies & Cities, Eastern Connection. She received the DanceWeb Vienna scholarship in 2010 and 2012. In 2014, CNDB awarded her the Excellence Award for her contribution to the construction of Romanian contemporary dance. She holds movement workshops and in 2016 she conceived the Everything for Endorphins (Totul Pentru Endorfine) program. In Search of Dance is her latest research project, launched in 2019.
In 2012 she started surfing and at the same time she started taking yoga classes. The relationship with Ashtanga Yoga began in 2004, the year in which she made the transition from dentistry to contemporary dance and choreography. She is also influenced by other styles, such as Iyengar, but she enthusiastically dedicates herself to the practice of Ashtanga, observing her transformative power every day.
During this week will examine artistic material in dance and choreography, especially regarding
– body: materiality of sensation; state of circulation between perception and action; movement material etc.
– sound: if we let sound be in the space, let the sound waves travel in the air, how do they affect, effect, surround, penetrate, move our bodies? Or invite them to be still? How is the relationship between dissonance and consonance and thus mobility and stability? What changes for the bodies once sound becomes music?
– geometry: once we are sensitized for it, any spatial constellation bears its own geometry. How can we make use of forms and relations regarding our own organization in and of the space, and regarding the proposal for the audience´s meaning making capacities?
Jan Burkhardt is a dancer, choreographer and musician working in Berlin and Cologne, Germany. He specializes in Laban and Bartenieff methods and has been exploring Contact Improvisation, Body-Mind Centering (BMC), contemporary dance techniques and improvisational approaches for many years.
Jan teaches, performs and trains internationally in various artistic and pedagogical contexts (among them are the dance departments in Berlin, Cologne, Stockholm and Copenhagen).
Since 2007, Jan has been working closely with director Laurent Chetouane, and since 2011 he has been working with Sebastian Matthias and continues to create his own works, among them “vexations” with his colleague Kerstin Kussmaul, co-produced with ImpulsTanz , Vienna (2009), and “schweigstück”, with F. Willens, for Tanztage, Berlin (2010).
Bringing somatic practices and contemporary dance technique together with improvisation and compositional choices, this workshop will explore the inner and outer spaces.
We will focus on the exploration of movement, in our internal and external world. We trigger our creative capacity with the aim of landing in our sensing bodies by creating ensemble, solo and partner dances using scores that stimulate unbounded and embodied curiosity.
We will take a closer look at both dance technique, by deepening the understanding of the principles of human movement function, and at the creative process by vibrating all the possibilities of our body to be able to make our own choices.
Focussing on analysing the weight, strength and instinct reaction we will expand our ability to perceive and respond to impulses in order to allow the dynamics of giving and receiving.
We will jump from our place of comfort by exploring the physical intensity of our limits as well as create a body-interpreter full of systems. So that with cunning and instinct we will be able to play with what is necessary at every moment.
This workshop will give space for personal research and introduce various concepts by focusing on ideas of authenticity, alertness, presence and integrity. The aim is to unlock the potential in order to gain access and manage everything that we compose by moving out of necessity, confidence, risk, presence and sensitivity.
Gisela Müller studied dance in Paris, Amsterdam (SNDO) and New York. She was a member of several dance companies before founding, in 1992, The Move Company for which she choreographed numerous pieces. She was granted scholarships for artistic works both in Germany and abroad. Since 1988 she is teaching regularly in various institutions and studios. Since 2004 she is member of the board of Tanzfabrik Berlin and responsible for the artistic and educational programme of Berlin’s Tanzfabrik School and the director of the Dance Intensive programme. From 2006 until 2010, Gisela Müller was visiting professor at the Inter-University Dance Department / HZT in Berlin (Hochschulübergreifendes Zentrum Tanz) where she invented and co-directed the BA course in Contemporary Dance, Context, Choreography. Beside, she is an active member of the east European network for performing art Nomad Dance Academy since 2012. In 2018 she premiered the project Me again – But not alone in collaboration with the musicians Gebrüder Teichmann.
The workshop begins with a daily training based on different traditions and concepts, classic and contemporary, followed by improvisation games, themes and physical situations.
We will also learn choreography from William Forsythe’s repertoire and develop ideas for improvisation based on his choreography.
The work with the dancers proposed by Allison is playful, rigorous and encourages curiosity.
Allison Brown, a dancer, choreographer and teacher based in Frankfurt, Germany, has been teaching and leading workshops since 2000. As an instructor on Forsythe’s Improvisation Technologies, she was part of the dance program P.A.R.T.S. in Brussels, Belgium. Ms. Brown has participated in numerous symposia, such as the „explorationen 07” at PACT Zollverein, Essen, Germany. Since 2009 she has been on faculty at the HfMDK. Following Mr. Forsythe’s invitation, she has staged his works such as Duo and Workwithinwork on various occasions for dance companies worldwide.
As a choreographer, Allison Brown has been creating her own works since 1998. These include works for Pretty Ugly/Ballett Freiburg, the Künstlerhaus Mousonturm (Frankfurt) and the Transitions Dance Company Laban (London). Ms. Brown has been a dancer with the New York City Ballet, Twyla Tharp and Dancers, Amanda Miller’s Pretty Ugly Dance Company and Saburo Teshigawara’s Karas Company. From 1996 to 2004 she was a member of William Forsythe’s Ballet Frankfurt. As of March 2019, Allison has been named the Professor for Classical Ballet for Contemporary Dancers at the Center for Contemporary Dance in Cologne, Germany.
The workshop is open to dancers and performers with a professional background in movement, but also to other artists or students from visual arts or other areas who are interested in the area of performing practices.
The premise is the deconstruction of a false separation of theory from practice, of analytical and critical thinking from movement, corporeality and intuition. We try to move the body that includes both thoughts and socio-political reflections, that contains and expands the environment in which it exists and implicitly reflects on it.
The class therefore proposes exercises for awareness and theorizing the body in relation to the environment, rhythm exercises, a type of training that combines different motor practices (from areas including non-western and non-dance), but also exercises for analyzing works of art (performative or in other environments).
Photo: Andrei Dinu (Alexandra Pirici, Aggregate, 2017-2019, exhibition view Art Basel Messeplatz)
Alexandra Pirici is an artist with a background in choreography, who works undisciplined, crossing different environments. Her works have been exhibited at the ten-year art exhibition Skulptur Projekte Munster 2017, the Venice Biennale – Romanian Pavilion, at the 55th edition, Tate Modern London, New Museum – New York, the 9th Berlin Biennale, Manifesta 10, Center Pompidou – Paris, Ludwig Köln Museum, Russian Museum of St. Petersburg, Neuer Berliner Kunstverein, Van Abbemuseum Eindhoven, Warsaw Museum of Modern Art – among many others.
Exploring both the history and the function of gestures in visual arts and popular culture, Alexandra Pirici choreographs “ongoing actions” and complex “performative environments” that combine dance, sculpture, spoken language and music. Pirici frequently addresses the history of specific places in order to provoke and transform existing hierarchies.
The workshop will evolve around repertory sections from Noa Zuk’s recent creations, exploring its familiar traits of measured theatricality, the use of movement to create a world of ethnographic fiction, with fabricated rituals, invented languages and an affinity to the absurd and the complex interrelations between the seen and the heard.
Noa is a senior teacher of Gaga movement language. The workshop will include a daily Gaga Class.
Noa Zuk is a choreographer and a dancer. She spent twelve years as a member of Batsheva Dance Company and for the past 10 years has establishing herself as a choreographer, creating for companies and performing her work around the world.
In recent years, Noa began making work in collaboration with her life partner, interdisciplinary artist Ohad Fishof. Among their works are Garden of Minutes, ADR, The Nothing Trilogy and One More Song. Their work have been commissioned and presented by companies, festivals and art organizations in the U.S, Switzerland, Singapore, Germany, Norway, Scotland, England, Russia and Italy. Their latest touring piece, The Burnt Room, a marriage of sound art, performance art and dance, set for a room, was commissioned by The Center for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv and Berlin’s n.b.k in 2016. Their most recent creation, Shutdown, was commissioned by Wee Dance Company, Germany, and premiered in May 2018.
Zuk is also a renowned teacher, teaching master classes, workshops and Gaga movement language classes worldwide.
The Emotional Body or What Is Contemporary Dance is an introductory course in participatory artistic practices in contemporary dance developed by choreographer Cosmin Manolescu based on his concept of the emotional body, a personal working method drawn from the experience of the European project E-MOTIONAL.
During the workshop, designed in the form of 8 work sessions divided into 2 distinct modules, Cosmin Manolescu and his students will explore together different performative games, sensory and tactile explorations, contemporary rituals, improvisations and movement exercises in a participatory format.
The workshop will also consist of film screenings and theoretical discussions about the performative universe proposed by important artists of the performative scene such as Marina Abramovic, La Ribot, Sarah Small, Thomas Lehman or Manuel Pelmuș.
Equally, during the working sessions the participants will have the opportunity to develop short performative moments inspired by some of the choreographic productions made by Cosmin Manolescu – the performances “Private Show” (2000), “Camera 1306” – performative installation for a hotel room (2011) or [Fragile] (2015). The module will end with a performative party designed together with the students of the Academy.
Foto: Cosmin Manolescu
Cosmin Manolescu is a choreographer, performer and executive director of the Gabriela Tudor Foundation. His interactive and participatory shows made under the Paradis Serial label have been successfully presented in Bucharest, New York, Paris, Lyon, Rome, Dublin, Porto, Amsterdam, Beirut, Riga, Lisbon, Seattle, etc., being awarded at various festivals in the country and abroad. Since 1998 he has regularly conducted dance workshops for dance professionals, people with disabilities, actors, amateurs, the general public or children, in Romania and abroad. In the over 25 years of professional activity he organized numerous cultural projects (festivals, artistic research projects, shows, residencies, workshops) and played an important role in promoting and developing contemporary dance in Romania and in creating the National Centre for Dance Bucharest.
From 2012 to 2014, Cosmin Manolescu was artistic director of the ZonaD space – Paradis Serial studio, and from 2011 to 2015 of the E-Motional program.
His recent performances include [Fragile], an E-Motional co-production: rethinking dance, “the kite or what is contemporary dance”, made in 2015 in Kinosaki, Tokyo and Bucharest as part of the Eastern Connection project. In 2017 he started the choreographic project “Dans-Wanderer”, which includes the 2019 project “Emotional Europe”, taking place in Bucharest and Brussels and a new participatory performance in September 2019.
The laboratory of improvisation and performativity started out as a coaching that took place within `Meet the next generation`, a mentorship and research program organized by Wasp – Working Art Space and Production and was developed with the intention of providing local performers / dancers with an educational and research framework more consistent and professional than contemporary dance classes for amateurs. During an intensive work period of two months, benefiting from the logistical support of the National Centre for Dance Bucharest and Zone D, we created / elaborated, together with a group of eight performers (Andreea David, Nicoleta Enache, Ruxandra Enache, Smaranda Găbudeanu, Cristina Lilienfeld, Alina Lungu, Melania Măceșaru, Ruxandra Stanciu) a laboratory framework of performativity and improvisation, going through techniques and principles of movement in contemporary dance and somatic techniques (experiential anatomy and body-mind-centering).
Performer’s Lab – laboratory of improvisation and performativity focuses on acquiring performative skills, on finding a working method based on parameters that apply to each movement, gesture or presence, starting from the system of notation and graphical representation of these tools and of prescribed scores in an attempt to make it transmissible and usable in other educational contexts.
Performer’s Lab focuses on discovering the multiple resources and approaches in per-forming the body, on the road from extracting sensation, impulse, emotion, intention, thought, gesture from the natural, personal, intimate and unconscious to bringing it into the conscious and into representation, on the improvisation technique starting from certain prescribed operating rules. In the work process we’ll practice in prescribed movement phrases, in improvisation.
Mădălina Dan is a winner of the 2015 CNDB Awards. A constant presence on the Romanian dance scene and one of the most important artists of a new generation of dancers and choreographers, she was awarded for her contribution to dance and performance through shows, workshops, creative labs and mentoring projects.
Mădălina Dan is a graduate of the “Floria Capsali” Choreography High School in Bucharest and of the National University of Theater and Cinematography in Bucharest – choreography department. He has a master’s degree in playwriting (dramatic writing) from U.N.A.T.C. Bucharest. From 1998 to 2003 she was a member of the dance company “Oleg Danovski” in Constanța. In 2008 she participated in the scholarship program for contemporary dance “DanceWeb Scholarship” – Vienna.
Mădălina Dan was a guest artist at the Arizona State University School of Dance and an associate artist at the National Centre for Dance Bucharest in 2016.
She studied in Berlin at HZT (Hochschulübergreifendes Zentrum Tanz Berlin) in the SoDA (Solo / Dance / Authorship) program. Her works have been presented at Springdance Festival Utrecht, Tanzquartier Wien, Balkan Dance Platform – Novi Sad, eXplore Dance Festival – Bucharest, Temps d’Images – Cluj, SouthBank Center & Chisenhale Dance Space – London, Fabrik Potsdam, Hebbel am Ufer – Berlin, TanzFabrik – Berlin, Dance Theater Workshop – New York, Firkin Crane – Cork, Alta Theater – Prague, Art Stations Foundation – Poznan, Sophiensäle – Berlin, FFT Düsseldorf, Impulse Festival, Mülheim, Lyon Dance Biennale etc.
At first we practice something like what comes before it becomes dance. The becoming of dance.
Being in the body. In space. In time. Being looked at, being recognized, and recognizing the situation as it is. And let it grow from there, finding the logic of the moment. Then it is dance.
The class and the workshop combine physical body work with awareness development practice. In this practice we are shifting our focus to the aspect of being in dance. The class will include working with one’s weight, shaking, giving and receiving touch, special relationships inside one’s own body and in relation to others and various improvisational patterns designed to enhance and fine-tune the synchronization of physical, mental and emotional awareness and the sensitivity of the performer.
The workshop will keep developing and deepen the practice that we open in the class but more from the preforming/stage aspects. We will watch each other and be watched by others and create our moment when dance appears in the space, when information passes through us as the source of inspiration and interpretation to our being/dance.
Sigal Zouk is a dancer/artist working in Berlin since 1997. She received her training at the Emek Izrael Dance School and joined the Bat-Sheva Ensemble in 1994-96. After moving to Berlin and working with artists such as Luc Dunberry and Juan Cruz Dias de Esanola, she became a member of Sasha Waltz and Guests from 1999 to 2004. In 2005, she began her collaboration with Meg Stuart/Damaged Goods – first as a dancer and then as choreographic advisor/outside eye for the work of Stuart and Gehmacher as well as Stuart’s following works. Until today she collaborates with Meg Stuart as a performer and as an outside eye. In 2007, she began her long time collaboration with Laurent Chetouane, during which she created 10 dance and theatre works for the stage.
She has worked with other artists such as Boris Charmatz (Musee de la Danse), AWST & Walter, Zeirkratzer, Simone Aughterlony, Ian Kaler et al.
During the past few years she has begun to develop her teaching practice where she guides professional dancers to locate their feeling body to a presence that has the potential to navigate in and through any situation. She teaches in several European dance departments and institutions including Tanzfabrik Berlin, HZT University Berlin, ZZT Hochschule für Music und Tanz University Köln, DDSKS Copenhagen, DOCH University Stokholm and Ponderosa.
Zouk accompanies artists and choreographers such as Jared Gradinger/Angela Schubot, Meg Stuart and Sheena McGrandles on their artistic journey, helping them to work with their limitations and their potentiality.
She was awarded the best performer in Dortmund Festival 2010 as well as dancer of the year from Tanz Magazine 2011.
What kind of body is dancing? For a new morphology of presence.
In this first module I propose to discuss different hypostases of the dancing body.
Can the contemporary dancer still be an executant?
What kind of poetic and political load does the dancing body carry? What does a poetic charge of presence mean? But a political one? Is body politics a critical archiving of the productions of social reality around us? What and how do we filter the abundance of surrounding products of the body? Do we live in a paradoxical “abundance of hyperimpoverishment of the presence”, in the sense that the horizontal coverage of the body – see the multitude of image proliferation – is so large that the verticalization – the production of new meanings – needs a deepening and a new grammar?
A discussion starting from the Introduction to the volume Singularities. Dance in the Age of Performance by André Lepecki
The body of the intersection between performance and dance
A brief introduction to performance theory and practice. The influences of the avant-garde. Offensive aesthetics – besieged bodies. Personal histories and political histories.
Some personalities of the performance and their relevance in the configuration of the “body-manifesto”: Marina Abramović, Orlan, Gina Pane, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, La Ribot.
Postmodern dance configurations – the body as a malleable, modulable surface, on which complementary visual and musical semantics are inscribed.
Thinking of the body in direct, immediate relation with visual art and music.
Judson Dance Theater Movement: Simone Forti, Steve Paxton, Yvonne Rainer, Trisha Brown, Lucinda Childs, Meredith Monk.
Re-significations of bodily presence, redefinitions of body representation. The opening of the dance stage to fluid representation formats – practices of the choreographers Jérôme Bel, Boris Charmatz, Xavier Le Roy.
Mihaela Michailov is a playwright and performing arts critic. She is interested in educational and political art, fluid performative dramaturgies, performance theory and emotional pedagogies. She has held, since 2007, conferences and presentations focused on the evolution of Romanian performing arts in Avignon, Paris, Nancy, Vienna, Tokyo. Her theatre plays have been translated into Bulgarian, English, French, German, Greek, Spanish.
Ștefania Ferchedău accompanies the students of the CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance on a guided tour of the exhibition “24 arguments. Early connections in the Romanian neo-avant-garde 1969–1971 ”, organized by the Institute of the Present at the National Museum of Art of Romania.
“24 arguments” also includes a performative event, based on a reinterpretation of the piece “Genesis” by choreographer Miriam Răducanu, created by the artist Mădălina Dan especially for the exhibition. Part of the “Nocturnelor” program with which Miriam Răducanu became known in the late 1960s, the piece was presented at the “Romanian Art Today” exhibition in Edinburgh, in 1971, to music by Anatol Vieru.
Ștefania Ferchedău is a manager, producer and mediator in the field of performing arts, working interdisciplinary in Romania and internationally. She used her humanistic and literary training and long experience in cultural management in working closely with artists and dance and theater organizations, but also visual arts and architecture, to accompany, produce, present and document a variety of projects.
Together with Alina Șerban she develops the Institute of the Present, an association with an interdisciplinary profile, founded in 2016. Among the organizations she has collaborated with since 2010 as program manager, producer, artistic or management consultant are: Timișoara European Capital of Culture, Gabriela Tudor Foundation / United Experts, Zeppelin Association, MetruCub Association, pepluspatru Association. Past institutional affiliations include the ECUMEST Association (2003-2008), the Romanian New York Cultural Institute (2008-2010). In 2017 she received the award for Cultural Management for the last 10 years of activity from the Administration of the National Cultural Fund.
We’ve invited the choreographer and performer Willy Prager to hold, for two days, an intensive workshop with the students of the Academy of Dance and Performance, and a presentation of his artistic career.
The event is part of a series of meetings that the CNDB Academy students have for six weeks with choreographers and artists from different backgrounds, in a framework that will provide them with reference points for further development.
Photo: from the performance “The Victory Day”, created by Willy Prager together with Iva Sveshtarova
Willy Prager is a dance and performance artist and artistic manager from Bulgaria. He graduated Theater-studio 4Xc-Sofia in 1996, “Synthetic Performing Arts” at the University of Plovdiv (1999) and the SODA master’s program of the University of Arts in Berlin (2013). Scholar and resident at Dance Web Austria, Tanzquartier Vienna and Treffen Theater Berlin, O escapo do tempo – Portugal, WASP Bucharest, Zagreb Dance Center.
As a performer, Prager has worked with directors and choreographers such as David Zambrano, Ivo Dimchev, deufert & plische, Xavier le Roy, Thomas Lehmen, Galina Borissova, Maren Stack etc.
As a director and choreographer, Willy Prager created Prager Strasse, Game-a-porter, Transformability, Egyptina spring, The victory day (Jardin d’Europe audience award at ImPuls Tanz Vienna), Sequel for the future (with Sonja Pregrad) etc.
Prager collaborates with various artists, including Iva Sveshatrova. Together they created Our last pas de deux, Museum og Hygiene, Balkan Dance Reality Show, shamebox (national IKAR award 2018) etc.
Prager’s works have been presented at major festivals in Bulgaria, Germany, Austria, France, the Netherlands, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Belgium, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Macedonia, Greece and Egypt.
Willy was one of the artists invited to teach in the project “I like to move it move it”, Linz 2009. He also taught at the New Bulgarian University and at the University of Munich.
Willy Prager is one of the co-founders of the Brain Store Project Foundation (Sofia, 2005) and Nomad Dance Academy (2006). Since 2008, together with Iva Sveshatrova and Stephan Shtereff, Prager organizes the International Festival of Contemporary Dance and Antistatic Performance.
We’ve invited the cartoonist, illustrator, writer, journalist and performance author Dan Perjovschi to a dialogue with students from the CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance.
He warned us from the start that there is no such thing as the best artist and no good or bad ones, but only contexts and that, if you have no perspective, every crack is a canyon. So when you can’t change a society, he advised us to change ourselves, the alternative being to make volume through creation.
“Some eat bananas to make money, others to make revolutions, and this is also what you have to do, through the body.”
Dan Perjovschi is one of the most appreciated and awarded Romanian contemporary artists, and his drawings which contain a civic or political message were displayed on the walls of some of the largest museums and art galleries in the world, from MoMa in New York to Tate Modern in London, but also on bus stops or on a wall in Sibiu. He says that he tries not to refuse any invitation to draw and that he enjoys the freedom of movement and creation, the only things he needs being a surface to draw on and the cariocas he always carries with him. In recent years there has been almost no protest or civic action in which his drawings do not circulate on banners or on social media, because Dan Perjovschi believes that it is important for artists to get involved in society and can not separate politics and civic life from his art.
(BIO text: from Andreea Vrabie, DOR – Pe bune)
Vava Ștefănescu, Carmen Coțofană, Mihaela Dancs, Farid Fairuz
During this session, Vava Ștefănescu presents a personal selection from the over 50 shows she has created, choreographed and in which she has performed so far.
In the second part, together with Carmen Coțofană, Mihaela Dancs and Farid Fairuz, Vava presents her work “Quartet for a lavalier”, created in 2008. Students have the opportunity to directly experience the performative space of the cabin with walls of glass which steam as the breath and movement of the performers gradually raise the temperature inside the cabin.
“Quartet for a lavalier” is a choreographic-sound installation that discusses several ideas related to cloistering: lack of distance, hostages of our own existence, tolerance.
Being a real-time composition, the only point of reference and support is the visible / audible situation, constant for 60 minutes.
All ideas – a kind of keywords from which to start – come in conjunction with the movement of sound, with the public eye and thus, other ideas are born, quite unexpectedly..
The randomness of the presence conditioned by a certain context, the attention on the rituals of perception, remain for me continuous preoccupations but also facades of this “back and forth” between fiction and reality.
concept / author: Vava Ştefănescu
co-authors: Vlaicu Golcea (sound-artist), Carmen Coțofană, Farid Fairuz, Mihaela Dancs / Vava Ștefănescu (performers)
We invited the visual artist and professor Iosif Király to give a presentation about his activity as an independent artist, about the subREAL collaborative project, in which he worked more intensely between 1990-2005 and in which he continues to develop projects today.
Iosif Király is also presenting to students a selection of performative works / actions in the field of visual arts in which the human body is involved (which usually take place in galleries or other alternative spaces to performance halls).
Thus, the presentation is structured in two chapters:
- Individual and collaborative projects. Photos, installations, actions.
- The human body as a means of expression in contemporary art.
Iosif Király is a visual artist, teacher and architect. Activates both independently and in the subREAL group. Works with photography, installation, performance and drawing. His creations investigate the relationship between perception, time, synchronicity and memory.
In 1995 he was one of the founders of the Department of Photography and Dynamic Image at the University of Arts in Bucharest (UNArte), where he is currently a professor. Since 2013 he also teaches in the master’s program of Visual Studies at SNSPA Bucharest.
He initiated, coordinated and, together with architects, visual artists and anthropologists, participated in research projects related to the changes in post-communist Romania: D-Platform, RO-Archive, Triaj, Tinseltown.
Király has an extensive portfolio of international exhibitions and his works can be found in numerous public and private collections.
I’m talking about rhizomatics, a concept of philosophical origin, in the process of elaborating movements by performers. The body seeks to release itself through dance movement and at the same time makes an “effort” to have figurative force. The gesture of the dancing body that territorializes a future show is under the sign of ambiguity. Extremely diverse information channels such as intensity, temporal extension and content proposals dynamize dance structures with different geographies. By connecting time-images and motion-images, these structures under development are part of a process of becoming the choreographic rhizome.
From Los Angeles University of California to Université Paris 8, Raluca Ianegic danced and studied dance in various formulas with different contents and temporal persistences. The creative activity took place both on theatrical stages such as Nottara, Odeon and Bulandra Theater, as well as in unconventional spaces. This was completed by an intense teaching activity and theoretical elaborations within the “Floria Capsali” Choreography High School, as Prof. Dr. within UNATC „I.L. Caragiale ”and in multiple workshops.
With the support of
The Administration of the National Cultural Fund.
The project does not necessarily represent the position of The Administration of the National Cultural Fund. The Administration of the National Cultural Fund is not responsible for the content of the project or the manner in which the results of the project may be used. These are entirely the responsibility of the funding recipient.