SZENE Salzburg, PNEU 2018: short review
This was already the fourth occasion that SZENE Salzburg has produced the PNEU festival, providing the artists of the apap-network. From 15th to 20th January SZENE Salzburg offered nine productions that engage with controversial sociopolitical issues, introduce memorable choreographic signatures and impress with strong formal statements, framed by vivid and intense discussions, meetings and talks.
Superamas opened the festival with Vive l’Armée!, a play about nationalistic ambitions and military conflicts that forges a bridge from the First World War into the contemporary terrorist attacks: the rise of nationalism, the dehumanization of opponents, and warmongering propaganda dominating political discussions.
The second opening production was done by Navaridas & Deutinger with Your Majesties, presenting the legendary Nobel Lecture of Barack Obama, held at the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony in Oslo in 2009. While Marta Navaridas was prompting gestures, movements, facial expressions on a little platform behind the audience, Alexander Deutinger copied whatever he catches while speaking to the audience.
Christina Ciupke & Ayşe Orhon presented a reduced but intense play on intimacy and distance, choreographed and performed with superb precision in At Close Distance. With uncanny precision they worked on velocity, friction, mass and stillness, where the intimacy of the encounter is randomly disrupted by sounds breaking the silence.
In with us Julia Schwarzbach and Nic Lloyd were interested in the “togetherness” of bodies space, objects and sounds as well as in the dynamics of the relationship between performer and viewer and talked about things they can only imagine, about things they can grasp with their hands, and about things they cannot grasp any longer – that have started to fade away and disappear.
Maria Jerez created a fascinating cosmos of forms, materials, rhythms and sounds in her installation performance Yabba. A hybrid of different technologies, an amalgam of entities in constant transformation in time, that produce other things in their own coexistence and in the encounter with those who observe them.The performance was accompanied by Lanoche, a musical project by Ángela de la Serna – a mix of experimental electronics, ambient, deep house and atmospheric slow techno.
Sometimes happily but most often sadly, there are times in life when one must say goodbye. Michikazu Matsune’s performance Goodbye was based on farewell letters written by various people for different reasons. Combining reading and dancing, Goodbye told us stories of personal relationships, love and complication, read between the lines with fine humour.
Inspired by conversation techniques from all over the world - the practice of Australian Aboriginals, the Inuits, by the theories of philosophers like Bruno Latour, quantum physicist David Bohm, Chantal Mouffe and the Maori - Building Conversation executed and performed different conversations together with the participants. The programme invited to one of the conversations that will challenge to speak from another perspective than we normally do and offered the possibility to explore how the way we speak is connected to the world we create.
In collaboration with Hélène Iratchet, Julien Lacroix, Anne Lenglet and Vincent Weber, Ivana Müller proposed with Conversations Out of Place a reflection on the world we live in by taking our relation to nature as point of departure. It functions as a bubbling ecosystem that produces interactions, symbiosis, waste, pollution, creating a biodiversity in a permanent state of transformation and takes place in an unusual and slightly absurd universe, in which a group of human beings wander the same path together for days, weeks, months, years, constantly keeping their common sense of direction but slowly losing the idea of their final destination.
A more lavish approach was taken by Cecilia Bengolea & SEAD’s BODHI PROJECT in Sound of the Trap. Cecilia Bengolea created a cadavre exquis; full of imagery, historical references, contemporary and folk dances that intertwine with recorded music. An evening full of dance that thrillingly combines Jamaican dance hall and Argentinian cumbia with Mozart symphonies and Afro Trap.
Maria Jerez - Yabba
Navaridas & Deutinger - Your Majesties
Superamas - Vive l’Armée!
(more photos ---> gallery below)
Talks and Discussions
The programme was rounded off with diverse talks and meetings.
Peter Stamer invited the Festival artists to his post-performance talk show Später bei Peter. Tanz, Talente, Temperamente. The audience could follow very clever and humorous talks, which have been introduced by Peters self composed songs.
The group discussion Passion and Politics gave an interesting insight how European funding works, and what European networks mean for cultural organisers, artists and in the sense of European thinking.
Peter Stamer - Später bei Peter. Tanz, Talente, Temperamente