14 April 2o21 | Press conference |Biennale di Venezia | Here is the first part of the Wayne McGregor‘s speech, pronounced as director of the 15th International Festival of Contemporary Dance (“First Sense”, 23 July – 1 August 2021). Enjoy!
“After a year of the pandemic and social-physical restriction we are powerfully reminded of the criticality of touch. Perhaps our first sense in our lives. Indeed, touch has taken on a new resonance in our societies at large and most personally this fundamental sense we usually take for granted it has been challenged and compromised. […] We have missed the powerful interpersonal relationship that are engendered by skin-to-skin contact. We have registered the profound loss of our physical, mental and emotional well-being. Such touch deprivation has opened in us all.
Instead, we have become all touched by tech: remote interactions, computer communications, zoom exercises and digital meetings. Our bodies are somehow suspended in the ether. Today we are desperate to reconnect to the world through and without bodies. And we are now more than ever ready to be exhilarated by a return to our fullest embodied existence.
Dance, the greatest first sense, the greatest touch art form, is poised to inspire such a spectacular revival and our Biennale Danza 2021 program will celebrate the diversity of many exceptional artistic voices that express their truths through the breathtaking instruments of the human form.
With concentration of 10 days of events simultaneously this year with the Architecture Biennale in July we have invited more than 100 artist from all over the world in Italian, Europeans and worldwide premieres.
“First sense” really aspires to touch you, to move you emotionally, imaginatively and physically and we hope to do that trough live performances, installations and collaborations: the Biennale College, commissions, a short film series and talks in workshops”.
So, if we just touch for a little minute on the live program, the working artists selected for the live performances this year are radicals on their own right. They are excellent communicators, provoking and stimulating fresh human awareness trough their work. Their pieces span an eclectic and diverse range of expressions with each artist articulating a singular and innovative perspective. This are refreshing works by major established names as well as urgent calls from new emerging voices, all holding up a lens to the most contemporary issues and speaking to us directly in their own terms.”
And here is a foretaste of the official program:
New Work For Goldberg Variations, Pam Tanowitz and Simon Dinnerstein; Odyssey, Hervé Koubi and Natasha Atlas; A room with a view, La Horde; Entropy, Xiexin Dance Theatre; La messe de l’âne Olivier De Sagazan; Somewhere at the beginning, Germaine Acogny (Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement 2021); Hard To Be Sox – A Belfast Prayer, Oona Doherty (Silver Lion 2021); Al Desnudo, Iratxe Ansa and Igor Bacovich; Best Regards, Marco D’Agostin; Balance & Imbalance and Judo, Bereishit Dance Company.
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