It’s time to take care and discover some joys at home.
>> VSPRS. SHOW & TELL (Sophie Fiennes, 2007) As a suggestion for those who are longing to be taken to a compelling universe of dance, music and ecstasy. Watch the documentary here: https://www.lesballetscdela.be/en/projects/film-and-video/vsprs-show-and-tell/media/ (french subtitles) Alain Platel has never shied away from confronting the audiences with an unusual universum. And in 2006 was his most outrageous yet -- one critic calling it "the weirdest, most shocking and provocative dance performance you will ever see." The dance, made up of ten dancers and ten musicians, is performed to an adaptation by Fabrizio Cassol of Claudio Monteverdi’s ‘Marian Vespers’, one of the most important works in the history of European religious music. vsprs In Sophie Fiennes’ mesmerising documentary, the dimensions of ecstasy and trauma that form the core of the performance are masterfully captured, whilst interviews with Platel and the dancers themselves add an extra layer of insight to the performances. >> Like it here? Elsie de Brauw in the world of Alain Platel (Carine Bijlsma, 2014) As the only actress sharing the stage with five dancers, Elsie de Brauw is having a hard an lonely time to find her own place in the creation process of tauberbach’. “This documentary is a unique look into the world of the famous director and choreographer Alain Platel. In this strikingly original, vibrantly sensitive portrait Carine Bijlsma creates a genuinely affecting mood through precise rhytms and visionary imagery. The exquisite performances and memorable portraiture lend the documentary a touching beauty and emotional resonance " in: Cinewoman magazine Watch the documentary here : https://www.podiumaanhuis.be/video/like-it-here-elsie-de-brauw-in-de-wereld-van-alain-platel (English subtitles) >> En avant, marche! (performance recorded in NTGent 2015, by Jan Bosteels) For En avant, marche! the directors Frank Van Laecke and Alain Platel have taken inspiration from the tradition of musical groups which for decades have been part of the social and cultural life. The musical direction is in the hands of Steven Prengels. At every venue, the four actors and seven musicians will be joined by a local brass band or marching band on stage. For the recording in Ghent this was KMV De Leiezonen. Watch the performance here: ‘La morte è passata – death has visited’. With this phrase, taken from Luigi Pirandello’s https://vimeo.com/336324025 L’uomo dal fiore in bocca (The Man with the Flower in his Mouth), the makers apply serious tension to the sense of community that is invariably associated with the life of a brass band. . pays homage to the unifying beauty of the community, the healing power of music. En avant, marche! >> C(H)OEURS (original performance 2012, Teatro Real Madrid) It was Gerard Mortier, at the time intendant of Teatro Real, who got Platel to work on the operas of Verdi and Wagner. Set against the backdrop of the Arab Spring, the banking crisis and the protest from the Indignados, it was especially the choruses that had an enormous impact on Platel. And for good reason, because this music originated in equally turbulent times. Following the revolutions of 1848, Europe was left shaking on its foundations. In their operas, Verdi and Wagner gave a voice to their people, who wanted to live freely in a new national unity. For years, the tension between the group and the individual have been the central theme in Platel’s performances which are popular, anarchistic, eclectic and committed. In , so far his biggest project, he examines –together with his dancers and the Teatro Real choir – how ‘dangerously beautiful’ a group can be. C(H)OEURS Watch the performance here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LiYvKGWQnMc In 2020 Alain Platel was working on a remake of this performance, in collaboration with Opera Ballet Vlaanderen. The première was cancelled because of the corona-crisis, but we are looking for a new date for the première. We hope to present the actual and vibrant to you soon. C(H)OEURS 2020
newsitem added on 13.05.'20
update corona-virus // Requiem pour L.
'Requiem pour L.' on tour in North-America & Canada is cancelled With a stricken heart we communicate the cancellation of the complete transatlantic tour of due to the measures to prevent the corona-virus from spreading. The health of everybody has priority now. Keep yourself and your beloved ones safe and be strong. And we hope to meet again in better times. Requiem pour L. Cancellations: May 1-2 NYU Skirball, New York May 20-21-22 NAC-CNA, Ottawa May 27-28-29 Festival TransAmériques, Montréal June 2 Carrefour International de Théâtre, Quebec June 5-6 PS21, Chatham June 11-12-13-14 Luminato Festival, Toronto newsitem added on 31.03.'20
update corona-virus // C(H)OEURS
Cancellation performances in Ghent & Antwerp and Athens C(H)OEURS 2020 GHENT & ANTWERP Opera Ballet Vlaanderen cancelled the performances of C(H)OEURS 2020 in Ghent and Antwerp (March 20 – April 8) due to the measures taken to prevent the Corona-virus, from spreading. A lot of hard work went into the creation, everyone was eagerly looking forward to present the performance to the audience. It is therefore with great regret, but at the same time with all understanding and support that we communicate the decision. Also the book launch The Choreopolitics of Alain Platel’s les ballets C de la B (published by Bloomsbury), at March 21 in Opera Ghent, is cancelled. For those who want, you can order the book on-line: www.bloomsbury.com/9781350080010 ATHENS Next stop on tour for C(H)OEURS 2020 would have been the Athens & Epidaurus Festival on July 12, but the show is cancelled. newsitem added on 17.04.'20
update corona-virus // Out of Context
We deeply regret to announce that
Out of Context. For Pina will not be performed at the Festival de Marseille 2020. In accordance with the health measures, the Festival had to cancel their 25th edition. Cancellations: July 7-8-9 at Festival de Marseille newsitem added on 18.04.'20
BLOOMSBURY PUBLICATION A time to rejoice at les ballets C de la B. English-language publishers Bloomsbury have just published the academic publication put together by Christel Stalpaert, Guy Cools and resident dramatist Hildegard De Vuyst. An impressive tome, the publication consists of several contributions that look back at an eventful 35-year journey: from a collective to a platform to a company around director Alain Platel. It coincides beautifully with a new turning point in the history of les ballets C de la B. To put an end to any and all misconceptions: Alain Platel does not stop making productions. The next one will be called Mein Gent and will be produced at Vooruit, together with Frank Van Laecke. The fact is, an artist does not retire. True, the organization will no longer be built exclusively around his works. But that was never the case to begin with. Les ballets C de la B has always looked for ways to share resources, infrastructure and knowhow. These past few years, this idea gained extra traction via the “Co-laBo” residency programme. It gave us a first-hand chance to witness the works of Serge-Aimé Coulibaly, Lisaboa Houbrechts, Ehsan Hemat, Selma & Sofiane Ouissi and Arkadi Zaides, a.o. It is with these people we will continue to talk about the future. To think about Platel’s real legacy together: the grand gesture. How can you make a grand gesture for the world today, using an intimate medium like a stage and a small instrument like a body as your conduit? A book launch of The Choreopolitics of Alain Platel's les ballets C de la B was planned for Saturday 21 March, but is cancelled due to the measures taken to prevent the Covid-19, the Corona-virus, from spreading. Want to know more about the book? www.bloomsbury.com/9781350080010 More information on Co-laBo: www.lesballetscdela.be/en/projects/in-co-labo/introduction/info/
newsitem added on 12.03.'20
Oceans are rising, so get informed
Oceans are rising, so get informed Red line in the city Twelve cultural organisations in Ghent are joining the campaign “Oceans are rising, so get informed”. By a red line on their facade – the symbolic rise in sea level – they encourage everyone to get well informed about the causes, consequences and solutions in the climate change, as a first step to prevent global warming. " Oceans are rising, so get informed" is a campaign that provides accessible information about the causes, consequences and solutions for global warming. A red line is applied to buildings throughout Flanders at two meters height, symbolizing the rise in seawater levels. The Ghent cultural sector is also joining: De Expeditie (MiramirO, Cie Cecilia, Aifoon, Victoria Deluxe), Danspunt, NTGent, Handelsbeurs, KASK / Conservatory, les ballets C de la B, Kopergietery, Campo and De Krook put a red line on their facade. The line in Ghent was also installed on buildings of UGent and Hogent. newsitem added on 25.02.'20
Day of the Dance 2020 >> this event is cancelled V O Y A G E -workshop with Tister Ikomo- Rhythm – body – group : these are the basic ingredients Tister will use to take the participants along in an intensive dance workshop.Dancer and percussionist Tister Ikomo combines Congolese traditional dance forms with elements from contemporary dance, percussion having an important role in it. His workshops start from his afro-dance style to warm up and free the body. For the Day of the Dance, Tister continues with tasks for group choreography and together with the participants he develops movements that explore the dynamic of the group. PRACTICAL DETAILS Age : young and adult people (14+) When: Saturday 25 April 2020, from 2pm till 5pm Where: Studio S3 les ballets C de la B, Bijlokekaai 7 9000 Ghent Inscription: free, but please register by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org TISTER OKOMO Biography newsitem added on 17.04.'20
Requiem pour L. – a book After months of preparation, creation and rehearsing, Requiem pour L. premiered in January 2018 in Berlin. More then ever, the whole process got under the skin of director Alain Platel and found its expression in his diary notes. As if he needed to write this performance out of his system, Platel developed the notes into a book. The book does not only tell about the personal experiences of Platel during the creation of Requiem pour L., it also takes you through the fascinating history of les ballets C de la B, from the living room experiment in the eighties towards the internationally acclaimed dance company that it is today. The book Requiem pour L. will be published in dutch by EPO. Everyone is warmly invited to the book presentation: June 19, 7.30pm at the Parnassuskerk (Oude Houtlei, Ghent)Free admission. Please, confirm your presency with this form: https://forms.gle/vL2noNrLWLgv5WRv5
Words by: Alain Platel, Thomas Blommaert (uitgeverij EPO), Elke and Dafne (L.’s daughters). Music: Russell Tshiebua. For more information, click on this link. newsitem added on 17.06.'19
The music of Fabrizo Cassol's
Requiem pour L. (inspired by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, conducted by Rodriguez Vangama and staged by Alain Platel) can be bought on cd either after the performance in the theatres or online through this link: https://outhere-music.com/nl/albums/requiem-pour-l-out-663 newsitem added on 03.10.'18
Summer workshops souvenir
Our dramaturg Hildegard De Vuyst came back from the Dream City Festival in Tunis, where she saw many inspirational projects and run into works by Serge Aimé and kabinet K, artists familiar to our house. Some articles report about the more than interesting programme :
In De Volkskrant / De Morgen (Dutch). In De Standaard (Dutch). In Politis (French).
newsitem added on 16.10.'19
Since 2004 les ballets C de la B lends its active support to a cultural boycott of Israel. Because of the increasing tension, les ballets C de la B relaunches the call to support the cultural boycott of Israel. Alain Platel emphasizes the relaunch with an open letter:
Open letter by Alain Platel (les ballets C de la B). Ghent, 12 October 2015. I would once again like to make a clear call for the support for the (cultural) boycott of Israel. I really am not much of a hero and it is always with a heavy heart that I swing into action, when I feel that it is necessary. It is even harder when I am forced to disagree with fellow artists – whose work I admire immensely – in this respect when they claim that these kinds of actions or statements either are not ours to take or make, or don’t help matters whatsoever. My (artistic) collaboration with Jewish and Palestinian artists, both in the Occupied Territories and here in Belgium, however, leaves me no choice. Since my first visit to the Occupied Territories – in 2001, and this during the intifada – I became convinced that the resolution of the conflict in this part of the world could be crucial and could give a huge boost to a positive development in the whole region, and by extension, East-West relationships as a whole. Of course, this is very naïve and utopian, but I believe that harbouring such utopian hopes is a good thing. After all, I see very little or no evidence of how the existing political and military structures do/did get things moving. And this is why, more than ever, I want to make a plea for a delicate, yet special citizens’ initiative: the support for the (cultural) boycott of Israel. Recent hot news from this region only reaches us when unspeakable cruelties are inflicted on Jewish citizens. We are not told, however, what actually triggered them. It always seems as if yet another Palestinian extremist brutally attacked innocent Jewish civilians in a moment of insanity. What we don’t hear, for instance, is how Jewish settlers and other extremists meanwhile are allowed to engage in constant (often violent) provocations; what’s more, under the continuous protection of Israeli soldiers, in the Palestinian districts, at the Al-Aqsa mosque and by extension, permanently and everywhere in the Occupied Territories. Photographer Filip Claus has recently made a short film about such an event in the city of Hebron. This is a Palestinian city on the West Bank (so-called Palestinian territory!) with approximately 200,000 inhabitants, where 800 illegal settlers live who are permanently guarded and supported by some 2,000 (!) Israeli soldiers. The Jewish settlers take regular ‘sightseeing walks’ in the Palestinian part of the city, accompanied by a small army of Israeli soldiers, at that … A daily (!) shocking, provocative presence. This is one instance of continuous harassment, besides the much more radical actions. Gaza is still an open-air prison; land, properties and possessions of Palestinians are still being systematically and illegally confiscated or simply destroyed. Illegal settlements are still being built every day in Palestinian territories. Every day, Palestinians are still being harassed, discriminated against, picked up, locked up or – where ‘necessary’ – simply shot. The OCHA (Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs), a United Nations humanitarian organisation, for instance, regularly publishes the shocking figures of the ‘invisible victims’ who are killed there every year. (see: http://www.ochaopt.org/documents/ocha_opt_the_humanitarian_monitor_2014_10_02_english.pdf). You could ask yourself here how it is possible that, at first glance, Palestinians seem to respond to this in such a resigned way. The massive military protection, the continuous legal and administrative preferential treatment of Jewish settlers, and selective reporting encourage this. As many have been predicting for a long time, this inevitably leads to radicalisation on both sides, which we have clearly seen increase for some considerable time now. And as many have been predicting for a long time, we once again find ourselves on the brink of an intifada. The third intifada, as it is being called. And if this one, just as predictably, is crushed in a horribly violent way, the situation may calm down again for a while … as we wait the fourth intifada and the fifth, the sixth … etc. to kick off. Unless much more, clear pressure is exerted on the Israeli government(s) to work on real, constructive and permanent solutions. A (cultural) boycott is nonviolent but is incredibly irritating and with ardent advocates such as archbishop Desmond Tutu is in very good company. Alain Platel les ballets C de la B Info about the Belgian Campaign for an Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel: www.bacbi.be www.vrede.be More information about the point of view of les ballets about the cultural boycott, can be read via this link. newsitem added on 10.05.'19
les ballets C de la B supports HART BOVEN HARD Hart Boven Hard is a citizens’ initiative that unites individuals and organisations concerned about the planned policies of the Flemish and federal governments. Ranging from students and pensioners to social and cultural organisations, they all aim for a society that opts for ‘heart before hard’. The initiative was born in Flanders and is gradually expanding into French-speaking Belgium too. The francophone counterpart goes by the name of Tout Autre Chose. More info: www.hartbovenhard.be newsitem added on 22.11.'19
Les ballets C de la B wants to invest in the next generation by taking in residents who will get the opportunity to be coached in their work by director Alain Platel and Hildegard Devuyst, Platel’s dramaturg for more than 20 years. The basic idea are one-month-residencies in one of the studios at les ballets. There are no prefixed artistic conditions, no exclusives when it comes to form or movement language. Young artists who think their work would benefit from a residency, can apply by mailing to Hildegard De Vuyst.
email@example.com newsitem added on 18.10.'17
les ballets C de la B in 15 minutes
les ballets C de la B in 15 minutes les ballets C de la B was founded by Alain Platel in 1984. Over the years it has developed into an artistic platform for a variety of choreographers. As a result of its unique mixture of artistic vision’, les ballets C de la B is not easy to classify. It is nevertheless possible to discern a house style (popular, anarchic, eclectic, committed), and its motto is ‘this dance is for the world and the world is for everyone'. les ballets C de la B immersed in its archives and came out with a video compilation. newsitem added on 09.06.'20