PSR Kondenz 2022
Kondenz festival took place from 23rd to 30th October in several venues in Belgrade: Cultural center Magacin, Bitef Theater, Atelje 212 Theater, Cultural Center Vlada Divljan, Center for cultural decontamination, Cultural Center Vuk, Students’ Cultural Center and the Museum of Contemporary Art.
With the motto radical vulnerability, it pointed out the states of vulnerability as a starting point for getting together and enhancing communities, communal work, and mutual solidarity as prerequisites for a more just and better world. Its programme showed the examples of different choreography and dance works that dealt with such topics and strategies, in a great variety that attracted a lot of attention from the local and international audiences.
The festival presented 9 performances, 2 lectures, one dance magazine presentation and one video projection.
Lecture by Thomas DeFrantz, choreographer and theoretician, New York: Blurring the Background: Black Performance as Political Ontology
Black Performance arrives as a ontological nodule of dance as politics. Of course, as Black Performance emerges in the crucible of capital and disavowed humanity; the dances fomented within the formation of Black life and Black thought are inevitably constituent of political agency and political address. This paper asserts the centrality of Black Performance as, not a political ontology, but the matter and immanence of political ontology itself. The double-bind of black performance as the opening to contemporary global political formations is considered alongside questions of aesthetic value, skill, practice, and expertise. And the formation of a commons of performance, born of a radical disavowal from mainstream formations of ‘the human’ that allow many to gather in the places of shared and adjacent vulnerabilities.
24/10/2022 UK Vlada Divjan
18h Lecture: Rok Vevar, theoretician and dance archivist: Studies of Elementary Compositions
In a lecture Studies of Elementary Compositions, I will introduce the choreographic oeuvre of Lucinda Childs with a retrospective look at her Judson Dance Theater period (1962-1964) with some extensions up until 1968 in order to understand where her work was heading to after she returned to the stage in 1973 and made pieces that are part of Works In Silence (1973-178). What followed the period of mostly short choreographic works is to this day considered the choreographic signature of Childs with emblematic Dance (1979) in collaboration with Philip Glass and Sol Le Witt as well as Available Light (1983) with John Adams and Frank Gehry. The momentous piece that helped to change Childs' work from the shorter forms to feature-length pieces was her collaboration with Robert Wilson and Philip Glass on the opera Einstein On The Beach which was presented at BITEF in September 1976.
20h Dance On ensemble
WORKS IN SILENCE – Lucinda Childs
The WORKS IN SILENCE offer insight into a decisive development phase of one of the most important choreographers of the 20th century.
This collection of early works from the extensive repertory of Lucinda Childs is specifically exciting both because of its rarity and due to its importance in the dance field. Most of these works have not been seen since they were shown in the 1970’s. In these dances Lucinda has left behind props, objects, the spoken word, symbolic movement, all hallmarks of the era of the Judson Dance theatre and chosen to focus on the passage of the body through space. To zero in on the essence of initial movement, which, for Childs, was the act of walking. From walking to running, to changing direction, to skipping, to leaping, illustrating the evolution of movement into dance through the choreographic vision of Lucinda Childs.
“I think it’s very musical for dancers to share a pulse,” she says. “They have to listen to each other. That’s what a musical ensemble does. They tune in to each other in a very precise way.” This is a rare entrance into a crucial period of transformation by one of the world’s most important choreographers and directors, who’s impact on both the world of the visual arts and influence on a generation of choreographers cannot be overstated. These works express a fragility and a humanity that is a perfect example of the value of experience, and ideally suited to a group of dancers that bring with them their own abundant histories and knowledge. In the act of stripping away all artifice and theatricality, the beauty and truth of wisdom is confronted, shared, and exposed.
25/10/2022 / UK Vuk, 18h
Stefan Veselinović and Romain Lafon-Pachot
4IMNNML (For I am an Animal)
Stefan Veselinović, contemporary dance artist, and Romain Lafon-Pachot, theatre and voice artist, got together in exploring the field of gramograms and the means of putting the body-language relation on stage.
Gramograms, which are seemingly random chains of letters / figures that make sense when pronounced separately (a title, as an example), make a perfect ground for exploring various linguistic combinations by discovering their constructing elements.
In this piece, the two artists explore the corporeal aspect of interacting with letters and relations that this word-play might bring up, hoping that by going back to basics some new perspectives and inquiries arise.
25/10/2022 / Atelje 212, 21h
Ivana Kalc & Igor Koruga
WHY NOT (?)
Project Why not (?) searches for the embodiment and definition of today's (hopeless, isolated, scared, over-identified) body of the individual and the affective space of care between (at least) two people/entities, as a practice that can be further developed with the collective (audience). In such a framework, the authors specifically investigate the technique of unison, i.e. "sameness" as a performing means of dance and as a cultural-artistic practice that carries with it an important historical framework of application: from the multi-purpose aesthetic-poetic application in artistic works of different epochs in the history of dance development (in the 20th century) to a targeted ideological and technological tool for shaping the social body of various social orders (communism, fascism, capitalism, etc.). The goal of researching unison in the choreographic sense is to study the space for creating glitches through which differences on the affective, cognitive, physical level and time will be articulated, in the physical sense, to articulate multiple identity transformations as spaces of different social and physical powers and abilities, and thus also as a basis for political, engaged and critical association and co-existence today.
26/10/2022 / Magacin 17h
Presentation and a talk about the dance journal Kretanja from Zagreb
Nina Gojić, Ana Fazekaš
Kretanja (Movements in English) magazine is the only bilingual Croatian magazine entirely dedicated to the art of dance. Since 2002, it has been published by the ITI Croatian Center and is published twice or once a year as an independent issue or two issues, while the editorial team strives to equally cover current topics from contemporary dance and ballet. The intention of the magazine is to promote dance and somatic culture in the social context within which (and sometimes despite which) dance lives, to establish a place for the development of dance criticism and theory, or to ecourage local and regional dance theory. The publication aims to systematically and qualitatively follow the movements on the Croatian dance scene, in a way to "archive", write down, preserve dance performances and events, at least through written texts as their possible, flawed, but potent trace, and to open a space for reflection on dance events and performances, which will serve as information for the audience, and an important source of critical readings for choreographers and dancers about their own work.
Since the change in the composition of the editorial board in 2019, the magazine has opened up to more experimental ways of writing about dance, more intense transdisciplinarity and research into the textual space as a performance space, and due to more recent cuts in funding, a conceptual-design solution had to be found so that the quality and number of texts remain uncompromised. The most recent members of the editorial board, Ana Fazekaš and Nina Gojić, in a moderated conversation with the audience, will present their work on the magazine in relation to their different experiences, interests and starting points, and will talk about editorial policies, old and new challenges of writing about dance, as well as reception by the local dance scene.
For interested readers, the Kretanja archive is also available online: https://hciti.hr/casopis-kretanja/
26/10/2022 / Bitef Teatar 20h
The sound they make when no one listens
In times of an ecological, political and personal crisis, Brazilian choreographer Thiago Granato explores the act of listening. Three performers delve into conscious listening mechanisms to perceive movements and non-movements, and unravel underlying structures of power and control. In a disorientating spectrum where sound and image sources intermingle, they amplify their sonic and visual sensitivity in order to extend the limits of their own bodies and the journeys by which they figure themselves together in the world.
The research on this piece started during the residency StationOne in Belgrade by Station Service for contemporary dance in 2019.
27/10/2022 Magacin 20h
This work created in collaboration of choreographer Ana Jelušić, dancers Marta Krešić and dramaturge Nina Gojić, deals with the ways we look and with what we see in this that we look at, relying on the haptic material of the choreographed touch. Using the hand as a tool to question the relationship between being-a-subject and being-an-object, the performers employ it to make it do something to the rest of the body, or on the contrary, the rest of the body moves the hand and “makes it touch”. In this interplay of moving and making it move, Vulnerable Bodies explore the mechanics of movement that opens questions of agency, consent, invitation, and the range between pleasure and violence.
By changing the way in which we visually perceive, the work complicates what is seen and how the audience participates in the viewing. In Vulnerable Bodies, language is the third hand that enters the choreography and tries to “determine” this experience and thus opens a space for experiencing the role of language as a means of manipulation.
28/10/2022 Students cultural centre / Great Hall 20h
To Speak Light Pours Out
They say when we’re all in the same space listening together, our heartbeats might end up synchronizing. But our breathing will not, our breathing will stay polyrhythmic.
They say listening might be the most complex of all human behaviours.
To listen is a state of tension.
(Listening across difference.)
(Listening further than you can see.)*
Mixing the work of different writers, composers and performers, To Speak Light Pours Out is a performance that immerses the audience in a powerful listening space; creating a sonic world that channels the energy of rhythms, voices, texts, and their meanings.
With the physical pleasure and disorientation of polyrhythmic beats and the raw energy of voices that layer up sonic and spoken images, the tensions are both political and poetic, liberating and activating.
To Speak Light Pours Out is an invitation to enjoy the sharp energies of positive disturbance and resolute possibility, a shout-out to the lust for transformation, resistance, and new shapes of being.
…like everyone, everywhere, was getting what they wanted.**
She pushes her fingers into the mud and listens as hard as she can, until sometimes the mud makes its way up her throat and out of her mouth. The words are wet and rich and full of power. Words that makes worlds.
(To name, to change, to strange.)***
*To Speak Light Pours Out (quote: Kate McIntosh)
**To Speak Light Pours Out (quote: Rebecca Tamás)
***To Speak Light Pours Out (quote: Rebecca Tamás, Kate McIntosh)
29/10/2022 Galerija Legat Milice Zorić i Rodoljuba Čolakovića, 12h
Trança (open air version)
Trança is an invitation to a tactile excursion where sound and movement intertwine on vertiginous surfaces and temporalities. Through a choreography of hands, Thiago Granato accelerates transformation processes where different forces are translated into signs, promoting an investigation on the body's power to create contexts that shape new ways of life.
This piece is the second solo in a trilogy which is a choreographic document part of a larger body of work entitled Choreoversations, a research on different imaginary collaborations between dead and living choreographers, as well as those not yet born.
29/10/2022 Centre for cultural decontamination, 20h
About exhaustion or floating beyond one's limits
It was as if there had never been a rest. It was as if we were always walking and running, without stopping and without mercy. It was as if we feared what would happen if we stopped. That moment of silence and stillness. Like a kind of death. That is why we must walk further, to prove that we are alive, that others see us, and that they will not erase us from their memories.
The performance On exhaustion or floating beyond limits was created within the project "Regularly in the zone of unlivability", which tries to focus on how the conditions of life, social, political, economic, working... bring us to a state of constant exhaustion that becomes a regular occurrence. The project explores how by accepting these conditions (for which we seem to have no choice), we participate in our own exclusion from life and are left in the zone of "unlivability". Five performers of the younger generation, examining their sources of exhaustion, ask whether we have the strength to resist by pulling out and offer the audience the possibility of collective stillness during the performance.
30/10/2022 Magacin 17h
Video for the dance history: Interview with Ana Ignjatović Zagorac followed by a discussion with Milica Ivić and Ana Ignjatović Zagorac
(Non)Aligned Movements – (Non)Aligned Programme
In the frame of the project (Non)Aligned Movements and its program dedicated to creation of the Balkan digital archive of dance, Station has started a series of video interviews which will complete the process of archiving the dance scene in Serbia. This interview with Ana Ignjatović Zagorac, one of the pioneers of contemporary dance in Serbial whose professional work is entirely connected to contemporary dance, is directed by Milica Ivić.
30/10/2022 Bitef Teatar 20h
Irena Z. Tomažin and Jule Flier
U.F.O. - Hommage to Katalin Ladik
“Z. Tomažin and Flierl’s procedures bring witnesses to the edge of the mystical, when their voices separate from their bodies and sound textures begin to influence the materiality of space itself as guests, beautiful formations that change the course of time in it’s consistency. With procedural construction, they achieve that I no longer perceive sound simply by listening, but vibration also becomes a tactile experience that unravels the haptic component of sensation with the skin, this porous and rough membrane of the body, which in micro terms turns into a communication swarm of vibrations, molecules and stimuli. The performers, on the other hand, conveniently transform themselves into material creeping masses that reach beyond the human and thus unravel the web of relations in interdependence with the environment in which the body is inserted as the interface of experience. In this way, they actualize the insights of the empowered female body from Katalin Ladik's heritage and transfer it to the field of modern feminist currents and new materialisms, in which they gain spectral phenomena, materiality, transcending the centrality of the human concept and exploring beyond the anthropocentric view of reality.”
The Hungarian-Serbian poet and performer Katalin Ladik is considered the “Yoko Ono of the Balkans” and a pioneer of noise and performance art in Southeastern Europe: With the “SoundBodyPoetry” of her radical body art performance UFO Party from 1969, she shook the artistic scene at the time and established methods of experimental voice work and physical performance already in the 1970s.
In their first collaboration, German sound dancer Jule Flierl and Slovenian choreo-vocalist Irena Z. Tomažin celebrate their shared interest in Ladik's artistic position: a homage that blurs the boundaries between poetry, acting and experimental voice work, while continuing the two artists' own research into the physical experience of language and the articulation of different layers of the voice.