Choreomaniacs

  • Dance & performance
  • Work selected in the Aerowaves Twenty22 program

50 min.

Info

The performance Choreomaniacs, a CNDB 2021 production, has been selected in the international program Aerowaves Twenty22 and will be presented at the opening of the Aerowaves Spring Forward festival on April 28 in Elefsina (Greece).

Choreomaniacs is a performative docu-fiction, chronologically following the events that marked the “dance epidemy” in the summer of 1518, in Strasbourg – a mass dystopian manifestation, which affected several hundred people. The show discusses the way we choose to look at dance, starting from a series of testimonials from the scholars of the period, a mix of pseudoscience, theology and medieval science-fiction, in contemporary movements. The focus is on the way the epidemic spread was documented, the events being told from the point of view of the watcher, never from the point of view of the one who lived them.

Description

1518. The city of Strasbourg is on full alert. A dance epidemic starts in the city’s main market. 

Called, over the ages, “The Dance of Saint Vitus”, “Lascivious Chorea”, “dance mania” or “choreomania”, the documentation of this event is as bizarre as the event itself; a mix of humorous medicine, supernatural phenomena, a bit of mycology and some mythology. For those who dare to browse the articles forming the internet wow, the dance epidemic is strongly infused by the ideas of the late Middle Ages Christian Church.

The few contemporary researchers who studied it classified the event as mass hysteria, and few dance theoreticians even named it an early choreopolic manifestation.

This dystopic event – a dance epidemic that affected several hundred people, became a historical information through the visions of those who had a voice in the community of the time (clerics, local authorities, theologists, chroniclers). In the absence of any testimony for choreomaniacs, the start of this epidemic remains a speculation, that slowly transformed into historical truth. Also a speculation remains the contemporary interpretations, which (re)contextualize the historical interpretations.

An original soundrack, signed by Vlaicu Golcea

With over 20 years experience in the performing music scene, Vlaicu Golcea is the one who signs the soundtrack of the work which carried the same title, created by Simona Deaconescu.

Vlaicu Golcea can easily be considered one of the pioneers of integrating electronic music and computers in this field. In the last 10 years he has dedicated himself mainly to the composition of stage music, film and multimedia installations, being one of the most active and well-known crossover artists of his generation.

Much more than a simple commentary on the choreographic intention of the work made in the frame of the CNDB program, COREOMANIACII OST is an independent artistic creation. In his compositions, his music not only accompanies. The quality, the stylistic universe and the imaginary that Vlaicu Golcea proposes make of his compositions elements that if taken singularly manage to play the main role.

We invite you to listen to it in full below on Youtube, and you can also find it on Spotify, Apple Music and Bandcamp.

Concept and choreography: Simona Deaconescu
Music: Vlaicu Golcea
Production: Laura Trocan
Light design: Alexandros Raptis

With
Georgia Elza Măciuceanu, Diana Maria Dragu, Laura Murariu, Nicolae-Robert Popa, Adrian Popiță

Biography
Simona Deaconescu works interdisciplinary, at the border between performance, installation and film, examining social constructs, between fiction and reality, sometimes with irony and black humor. She completed her bachelor’s and master’s studies at the choreography department of the National University of Theater and Film in Bucharest. She received the danceWEB scholarship in Vienna (2014), the National Center for Dance Bucharest Award (2016), was nominated as an Aerowaves Artist in 2018 and 2022 and as Springboard Danse Montréal Emerging Choreographer in 2019. For the last two years, she has been a resident artist in the European projects Moving Digits and Biofrictioni, and in 2021 she became Forecast Mentee, under the mentorship of the French choreographer Mathilde Monnier. Her works have been selected and presented on dance and theater stages, cinemas, galleries, museums and architectural sites, reaching audiences in Europe, North and South America.
In 2014, she founded Tangaj Collective, and since 2015 she has been the co-founder and artistic director of the Bucharest International Dance Film Festival.
https://www.tangajdance.com/

Produced by
The National Center for Dance Bucharest

Co-financed by
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.

Special mentions

“Choreomaniacs” is one of the 20 works selected in the Twenty22 program of the European contemporary dance network Aerowaves, of which CNDB is part together with similar institutions from Portugal, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Norway, Belgium, Hungary, Czech Republic, Italy, Austria, Cyprus, Greece, Albania, Croatia, Russia, Iceland, Ireland, and others..


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