Baroque Dance Specialist, Béatrice Massin takes the pretext of a rondeau to launch a variation on the thousand and one contemporary ways of playing with contact with one’s partners. In the end, his “Abaca” of the great century is also a tribute to abstraction.
There are four dancers – three men and one woman – but in fact there are five. There is also something that you move on wheels. A large door that looks like a vertical piece of scenery or a painter’s easel. A totally abstract object that the dancers applaud with them at the end of the performance. This door which, in the absence of dancing rolls, allows a series of jokes which brings a good distance with the original Court scene, imposing a context where the dance of the great century and that of abstraction are placed at equal distance. . “Abaca” recounts the passage from one to the other in a tight, sensory and emotional exploration, technical of course. The bet is ambitious, but Béatrice Massin plays with lightness and mischief, choreographing burlesque adventures like a Dimitris Papaioannou who would have returned to a little sobriety. She navigates smoothly from one era to another, without what could appear as strong homages hindering the smooth running of the round, always in search of new figures, but nevertheless tireless in her way of constantly returning. at the beginning. There is this series of desynchronized jumps, heavy and beautiful, or even this session of cackles where the dancers, finally mixed, a little upside down, offer a daring finale. And of course, there is this door that we use to enter or leave with one, come back with the other. You can also cling to it like on a turnstile at full speed or almost throw it in the face. There are also knowing looks, discreet chuckles. A sung theater scene. Casually, we are sometimes on the verge of performance with this dance of laughter which sees the group arranged like a canvas of a great master. Everything seems calm and decorous, as in Versailles no doubt, but yet a dancer breaks into a fit of laughter and this laughter is contagious. The other dancers start laughing harder. They are then shaken from within until the outside of their body throbs and quivers. Is the body of the dancers danced? This is without doubt the most interesting image of the evening.
Production: Fêtes galantes with the Théâtre de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, national stage, Dance on All Floors! Dance territory stage, National Choreographic Center of Créteil and Val-de-Marne, Micadanses-Paris 2022.
Photo: © Benoite Fanton.
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