Never ending (story) - DANCE ON

Premiere: July 2021, Radialsystem Berlin (tbc)


Choreography Mathilde Monnier
Dancers Ty Boomershine, Emma Lewis, Jone San Martin, Gesine Moog, Marco Volta
Lighting Design Martin Beeretz 
Sound Design Mattef Kuhlmey
Artistic Collaboration Stéphane Bouquet
Costume Mathilde Monnier
Costume Assistance Nora Stocker
Technical Direction Martin Beeretz
In cooperation with Kammerspiele München
With the support of Montpellier Danse à l’Agora, cité internationale de la danse/ 
DANCE ON is a project by DIEHL+RITTER gUG, funded by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, the Senate Department for Culture and Europe of the State of Berlin and co-funded by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union as part of DANCE ON, PASS ON, DREAM ON.

The Dance On Ensemble initiates a program on the art of replying in dance. Contemporary artists – Tim Etchells, Mathilde Monnier and Ginevra Panzetti & Enrico Ticconi – are invited to answer in their own artistic languages to iconic works of modern and postmodern dance by Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham and Lucinda Childs. Dance On is a Berlin based Ensemble for experienced dancers beyond the age of 40, all of whom look back on long biographies as dancers. Miki Orihara, dancer of the Ensemble, danced for nearly 30 years as a soloist for the Martha Graham Company. The Ensemble’s artistic director Ty Boomershine worked with Cunningham in the beginning of his career and danced with Lucinda Childs for over 20 years, as well as acting as her rehearsal director and artistic assistant. Out of these personal connections, the idea arose to restage works by Graham, Cunningham and Childs and to include them in the repertoire of the Dance On Ensemble. After all, the work of these choreographers is closely linked to the bodies of their dancers. Mathilde Monnier works with issues surrounding the transmission of repertoire by interrogating through practices, exercises and scenic proposals, the notions of re-appropriations. This work will be an opportunity to go through a contemporary work to better understand what is represented in time and how re-imagining can cross (or not) an era.

“For me, using an existing work as a template to develop a performance is an interesting and exciting prospect. It’s not a format that I normally create for myself, but as I am always looking for new approaches and directions in which to challenge my process’s and broaden my outlook, this concept appeals to me quite deeply. The search for the identity of the dancer in a work is relevant to me and Cunningham’s Story is an inspirational spring board for this topic. With its use of chance procedures, internal game structures, and personal choices in terms of the phrasing and movement composition, it inherently confronts the question of the role of the dancer as medium or as co-creator. While at the same time allowing the work, the dance, the subject itself to have a larger life of its own. Merce Cunningham’s work has always been important to me and the chance to work with such a rare and rarely seen dance as “Story” doubles my interest. The back story of the collaboration between Cunningham, Rauschenberg, and Ichiyanagi for this dance is fascinating and the choices available within the structure of the piece are particularly inspiring. The fact that the original cast included Viola Farber in who’s company I danced at the beginning of my career, creates a personal and satisfying link for me. The freedoms allowed in Story which were unusual for Cunningham’s work, most certainly had an affect on the work that Farber created for her own company and has influenced me on some level as well. The Dance On Ensemble is a beautiful, exciting company and holds an important place in the current dance climate. Bringing attention to dancers who excel in their field, have a multitude of knowledge, and have chosen to continue in a demanding and often uncelebrated discipline resonates strongly with my values.”