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2017 EDITION
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    Festival d’Automne à Paris
    156 rue de Rivoli
    75001 Paris

You are visiting the page of a show featured in the 2015 edition. Find all the shows from this edition in our archives

Trajal Harrell

The Ghost of Montpellier Meets the Samurai

Dance

    SCHEDULE AND VENUES
    • Centre Pompidou
      October 14 to October 17

    The Ghost of Montpellier Meets the Samurai. It might just as easily be the name of a Japanese legend, the title of a kung-fu film - or that of a piece by Trajal Harrell... In the hands of the choreographer behind Twenty Looks or Paris is Burning at The Judson Church - a series in fivesizes from (XS)to (XL), which cross-referenced postmodern dance with voguing - this title corresponds to a work in which the story of dance, mythical constructions, pop culture, energy and inner turmoil of those drawn to voguing are all jumbled together in a mass of explosive ingredients, hurled onto the stage. The ghost of this new work is the choreographer Dominique Bagouet, who passed away in 1992, and whose works such as So Schnell reshaped the landscape of French dance. The samurai is Tatsumi Hijikata, one of the founders of Butoh - that “dance of darkness”, and all its violent contrasts, born from the collision between Japanese theatrical tradition and German expressionist dance. Between the two, by their sides, is the figure of Ellen Stewart - the founder of New York’s LaMama avant-garde theatre.

    In a distinctly non-hagiographical approach, Trajal Harrell takes up these lives as near-legendary figures, in order to investigate what is at stake in the process of artistic creation: “why does art exist? What drives certain individuals to put all their energy into their art?”. In doing so, he brings us a fresh, paradoxical look at relationships between different choreographic cultures - taking in all the various rebounds, misunderstandings, and comings and goings from one continent, and from one scene, to another. Through song, snatches of dialogue, and truly electric dance, he distills these choreographic biographies - with voguing acting as the driving force behind the desires, areas of darkness, and passion of these artists who have given their all for art.

    October 17th  2015,  14h
    Free Entrance
    Mona Bismarck American Center
    34 avenue de New York - 75116 Paris
    Reservation : rsvp@monabismarck.org

    Artist Talk: Trajal Harrell
    In The Ghost of Montpellier Meets the Samurai, celebrated American choreographer Trajal Harrell investigates the crucial questions at the heart of artistic creation, addressing two legendary figures of contemporary dance Dominique Bagouet (the ghost) and Tatsumi Hijikata (the samurai). Harrell will speak at the Mona Bismarck American Center about the driving forces behind this piece.

    Choreography, Trajal Harrell
    With Trajal Harrell, Thibault Lac, Perle Palombe, Stephen Thompson, Christina Vasileiou, Ondrej Vidlar, and alternating with Camille Duriff Bonis, Wei Ming Pak
    Lighting design, Stéfane Perraud
    Stage design, Erik Flatmo
    Sound design, Trajal Harrell
    Costumes, Trajal Harrell et les interprètes
    Dramaturgy, Gérard Mayen

    In coproduction with Festival Montpellier Danse ; Festival d’Automne à Paris ; Les Spectacles vivants – Centre Pompidou ; Hau Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin) ; théâtre Garonne – Scène européenne (Toulouse) ; Walker Arts Center-Minneapolis ; New York Live Arts ; King’s Fountain // In partnership with Les Spectacles vivants – Centre Pompidou ; Festival d’Automne à Paris // With support from French-US Exchange in Dance, Creative Capital, New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts
    First performance on 25 June 2015 at Festival Montpellier Danse