21 May — 5 June 2016
V Play ens


Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui & Shantala Shivalingappa

Iceland National Theatre
May 31 19:30

Price: 5.500 ISK.

Indian dancer Shantala Shivalingappa returns to Reykjavik Arts Festival, this time accompanied by one of Europe’s most prominent choreographers, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui.
Play is the creation of dancers and choreographers Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and Shantala Shivalingappa. Play pivots on two intertwined conceits: the idea of playacting, the role playing required in theatre; and the games people play, in this case, a man and a woman. Games of chess, games of seduction, ploys where male-female energies are pitted, not so much against each other as in winning over the other. The premise of assuming another role, of putting on masks assumes shades of wish-fulfillment: there is here the child’s – or artist’s – desire to sidestep one’s image, to elude the trappings that accompany a name, a form or a history. But in the process of evading the self, sometimes more is revealed than concealed.
Award-winning Belgian dancer/choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui is one of Europe’s most sought-after choreographers. With his unique artistic vision he gives equal importance to diverse ethnicities and genres of dance. He has choreographed for the Paris Opera Ballet, Cedar Lake in New York and The Dutch National Ballet, among many others. Today he holds the position of artistic director of the Royal Ballet of Flanders. Cherkaoui was one of the authors of dance piece BLÆÐI, which the Icelandic Dance Company premiered at Reykjavík Arts Festival last year. Now he himself performs in Iceland for the first time.
Shantala Shivalingappa now honors Reykjavík Arts Festival for the second time, symbolically connecting PART I with PART II of the festival’s two year emphasis on the creative work of women and their battle for equal rights. Shantala is a dancer of two worlds as she is born in Madras of South-India but raised in Paris. She has mastered the ancient dance of Kuchipudi as well as western modern dance. Icelandic dance enthusiasts got to know her classical side last year, when she performed the dance piece Akasha to the live performance of classical Indian musicians. This year she shows us her other side, the side of the western modern dancer.
Play came into being, above all, thanks to the insight and impetus of one late choreographer Pina Bausch, who had long championed the work of Cherkaoui and Shivalingappa. Play is dedicated to her.
Directors: Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Shantala Shivalingappa
Music: Patrizia Bovi, Tsubasa Hori, Gabriele Miracle, Olga Wojciechowska
Dancers: Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Shantala Shivalingappa
Scenography: Filip Peeters
Costumes: Lieve Meeussen / Alexandra Gilbert
Lighting: Adam Carrées
Video: Paul Van Caudenberg