Deaf Bach. Alain Platel and “les ballets C de la B” Visit Riga

Deaf Bach. Alain Platel and “les ballets C de la B” Visit Riga
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The “Riga 2014” contemporary theatre programme forte forte presents the acclaimed Flemish artist Alain Platel and his “les ballets C de la B” on the 8th and 9th of November.

The Riga public is offered to see “tauberbach”, one of the latest performances by Platel created in collaboration with Munich Kammerspiele, at the Ķīpsala Exhibition Centre on the 8th and 9th of November. The performance starts at 7 p.m. both days. In addition to the guest performances, there will be a free programme of documentary films at the “K.Suns” cinema. The performance on the 8th of November will be followed by the artist’s meeting with members of the public.

The Flemish artist Alain Platel has been the head of “les ballets C de la B” for thirty years. The company has won widespread acclaim as a result of its unique mixture of artistic visions and the unusual, “wrong” and anarchic movement of the performers that nevertheless cut deeper and express much more than the most beautiful and perfect classical pas-de-deux.

„les ballets C de la B” is made up of dancers and choreographers who have studied classical and contemporary dance, as well as musicians, circus artists, and non-professionals also.

Alain Platel’s performances are based on the individual experiences, abilities and traits of the company’s artists because he, much like Pina Bausch, is interested in the personalities of the artists. Alain Platel is tirelessly looking for new ways to express via movement such diverse feelings as love, passion, desire, hatred, depression, tensions between the individual and a group. He is able to find beauty in many things that are generally considered ugly, abnormal, controversial. Movements that imitate spasms, convulsions, fits become fragile and beautiful when performed by “les ballets C de la B” dancers.

In several performances, this kind of body language is set to the otherworldly music by Bach, Purcell, Monteverdi, creating a particularly powerful effect.

The performance “tauberbach” (a compound of two seemingly incompatible words: “deaf” and “Bach”) focusses on a woman and five hybrid beings that have something from an amoeba, an animal, and a child. The woman is talking constantly because that is how she can survive. She is talking to the voices in her head and around her, and to life itself – while she has fundamental objections to life, she bears it with dignity. But gradually the five oddities help her discover new things and stop talking so she can feel, see and hear.

The performance was inspired by Marco Prado’s documentary “Estamira” and Polish artist Artur Zmijewski’s recording of a choir of deaf people interpreting Bach’s music.

The programme of films screened at “K.Suns” cinema presents Alain Platel’s documentary film about the “les balets C de la B” artists, called “les ballets de ci de la”, on the 9th of November at 2 p.m., German directors Jörg Jeshel and Brigitte Kramer’s film “Last Stop Kinshasa” about the play “vsprs” staged in various countries around the world with the last performance in Kinshasa, the capital city of Congo – on the 9th of November at 4 p.m., and Brazilian film director Marco Prado’s documentary “Estamira”, which tells about a woman who suffers from schizophrenia and who lives and works at a waste disposal site in Rio de Janeiro, on the 8th and 9th of November at 6 p.m.

Alain Platel received the New Theatrical Realities Prize in 2011, a number of festivals, publications and contemporary theatre organisations in various countries have recognised Alain Platel and “les ballets C de la B” performances as best performances of a given year, or even a decade, and “tauberbach” has been ranked among the ten greatest performances staged in Germany, Austria and Switzerland last season.

Tickets to the performances can be purchased from “Biļešu paradīze” outlets and online shop, as well as at the New Theatre Institute of Latvia at Miera iela 39-2. The film programme is free of charge. The contemporary theatre programme forte forte is organised by the New Theatre Institute of Latvia, and so far this year it has showcased plays staged by Alvis Hermanis, Jan Lauwers and “Needcompany”, and “Rimini Protokoll”.


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