Making of About you (a version)
- In the frame of Dance me to the End of… – exercises, distances, proximities
In November, CNDB is presenting online 9 video productions that accompany each of the performances that resulted from Dance me to the End of… (exercises, distances, proximities) – a program whereby ten guest choreographers worked along with the first generation of students from The CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance.
Jan Burkhardt (DE) and Sigal Zouk (ISR), Mădălina Dan, Simona Deaconescu, Farid Fairuz, Eduard Gabia, Andreea Novac, Manuel Pelmuș, Willy Prager (BG) and Vava Ștefănescu – were invited by CNDB to revisit well-known works of theirs which, in their time, wrote history in Romanian contemporary dance.
The choreographers worked together with the students from The CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance to bring back to stage the older works, but also to propose new ones. After a year of courses and workshops, the formed teams went through an intensive process of practice and live presentation.
The whole process was documented by Bogdana Pascal, video artist and TVR producer. Throughout November, CNDB will broadcast these video productions via live streaming on Facebook.
The nine video productions capture Dance me to the End of… (exercises, distances, proximities) in its essence: the revisitation of recent Romanian contemporary dance history as an exercise in training the new generation of dancers and performers.
Through interviews with artists, rehearsals recordings and excerpts from the original nine shows, the documentaries presented by CNDB invite you to discover the collective and personal efforts behind Dance me to the End of… (exercises, distances, closeness) – the program through which a new generation of artists is making their debut right in the middle of a pandemic.
ABOUT YOU (A VERSION) – by Vava Ștefănescu
A performance which premiered in 1997, this choreographic solo signed by Vava Ștefănescu has been invited to numerous international festivals (Aerowaves – London 1998, Manoever – Leipzig 1999, etc.).
Over time, the performance took various forms: the performers were multiplied, the spaces in which the performance took place changed, also becoming an experiment performance set in a grocery shop and even an attempt at a radio dance show.
The initial performance had 24 options in the succession of the scenes. The audience had the opportunity to vote on the order of the scenes before the show began: the Child, the Street, the House and the Love. The fifth scene, the Horse, was always the last and was an improvisation starting from the energy accumulated up until that moment.
In 2020, the choreographer revisits this work and calls it About You (a version), working on its re-enactment with Diana Solomon and Cătălin Munteanu, students in the program of The CNDB Academy of Dance and Performance.
The original choreography integrated in each scene an installation with photos taken by Cosmin Bumbuț and the artist’s father. The current version retains the photographic element, but in a manner that radicalizes the image. Cătălin Munteanu looks at the body almost in a journalistic way through instant photography and gives it its independent path as a parallel performance to the three-dimensional one.
If back then the stake of the whole performance was placed on dramaturgy in all the elements that constituted it, today, the form I found together with Diana Solomon shifts the stake on “what the body can say”. I was looking for a certain radicalization of the work process, of the research exercise, as well as of the general aesthetics of the result – the performance.
Very few elements have remained since then. It is interesting that at a distance of 23 years (I was 27 when I created it, and Diana Solomon is the same age today) certain “archetypal” themes such as The Child, The Street, The House and Love have a first bodily representation in the same family of bodily signs. (Vava Ștefănescu)
Live-stream subscription link
The facebook event where you can watch this video production is available here.
Concept and choreography: Vava Ștefănescu
Choreography assistance: Carmen Coțofana
Soundtrack: Sorin Romanescu
Light design: Alexandros Raptis
Video production: Bogdana Pascal
Graphic design: Daniel & Andrew
Diana Solomon, Cătălin Munteanu (live photography)
Performance created within the Intensive training program in contemporary dance (Program intensiv de formare în dansul contemporan).
The National Center for Dance Bucharest (CNDB)
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.