PREMIER OF THE FESTIVAL . Contemporary dance performance „i“ Šeiko šokio teatras (LT) & Maciej Kuźmiński Company (PL)
Choreography, visual design, sound design: Maciej Kuźmiński
Dramaturgy: Paul Bargetto
Dancers: Liwia Bargieł (PL), Niels Claes, Oksana Griaznova, Evgeniy Kalachov, Zuzanna Pruska (PL), Gintarė Marija Ščavinskaitė, Liepa Songailaitė
Costume design: Slavna Martinovic (SRB) in collaboration with Maciej Kuźmiński
Lighting design: Paweł Murlik (PL)
Producers: Goda Giedraitytė, Maciej Kuźmiński, Alexandra Machnik
Supported by: Lithuanian Culture Foundation and Klaipeda Municipality
Première: 15th of Sept., 2020 within programme of International Arts Festival „Plartforma”
Duration: 65 min.
Location: Culture Factory (Bangų str. 5A)
Trans-humanism / humanity / personality disintegration / anonymity / infinity of duration
The work revolves around considerations of identity in the context of trans-humanism. Identity will be considered from two different perspectives: as a unique combination of the characteristics of the individual (for example unmistakable motor identity - can we recognise it even though we don't see performer's face?) and as a result of social engineering giving common features to all units of a given society (individual vs. group, becoming many, becoming similar, merging).
"i" is a visionary and symbolic work at the interface of dance theater and visual arts. It draws attention to the phenomenon of trans-humanism, part of which is a life centered on an egocentric individual: i-phone, i-pad, instagram, infinity - i! "i" presents a hypothetical, but nonetheless likely transformation of consciousness from the dying body of an old man to the body of a newborn child. It is a spectacle-journey to a place where in the infinite trap of time, and without a sense of body, disintegration and reintegration of personality occurs. Interesting for the creator is a paradox contained in the pursuit of individuality, while becoming similar to each other (chameleon effect), which can be seen as casting a critical look at modern societies. The costume emphasizing anonymity (uniforms and helmets that strip the dancer of a signifficant part of his/hers identity while emphasizing movement individuality) is of special importance.
Trans-humanism is a notable inspiration for many social trends. It is no longer categorized as science-fiction, it is a gradually progressing global phenomenon as it redefines the foundations of humanity - a sense of belonging, methods of communication, pushing the boundaries of technology and the self, creating virtual worlds that blend with the real.
The choreographer draws from important sociological and philosophical works such as Fluid Modernity (Zygmunt Bauman), A Thousand Plateau (Gilles Deleuze / Felix Guattari), Sapiens (Yuval Noah Harari) and the work of the Polish concrete poet Stanisław Dróżdż. Referring to the ideas contained in these works, dealing with the identity and condition of man, Kuźmiński wants to critically examine the impact of technology on the understanding of humanity in general.
Maciej Kuźmiński Choreographer, performer, educator, producer. Artistic director of Maciej Kuźmiński Company. Founder and director of the Polish Dance Network. Enblish Dance Tabs magazine described Room 40 by Kuźmiński as 'bridging concept and beauty', a remark that well describes the style of the choreographer. His works, formally daring with grounded, dynamic movement, have been presented over 160 times in 20 countries. The multi-award winning artist has claimed among others the prestigious Audience Award at the Polish Dance Platform 2014, or 2nd Prize and Special Prize at the International Choreographic Competition in Hannover 2018. In 2019 his works were presented in the repertoire of Scapino Ballet Rotterdam, Polish Dance Theatre, Theatre Regensburg Tanz and Rozbark Theatre. He is also a pedagogue at Codarts, Trinity Laban, University of Calgary, Belgrade Dance Institute, Dance Departament in Bytom, Poland. Maciej Kuźmiński graduated with Distinction from MA Choreography studies and BA Dance Theatre studies from the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London.
* Corner of the critics:
„Kuźmiński bridges beauty and concept perfectly” – Dance Tabs [UK]
“Impressive rawness of the choreography and performance itself” – Dans Magazine [NL]
“The strong and floating movement of Kuźmiński reaches to the core” – Lapin Kansa [FI]
“Touched on a serious subject, and played it with humour” – Stuttgarter Nachrichten [DE]
“Interesting and dense spectacle that goes far beyond the dance theatre” – Gazeta Wyborcza [PL]
Šeiko Dance Company – dance professionals working in the contemporary dance field creating dance and music performances, immersive theatre, site-specific performances, promenade performances, dance education projects and theatre laboratories. The highest professional theatre scene awards winners, who have been working as a company in Klaipėda for six years and has expanded their geography to many countries abroad (USA, Germany, Norway, Denmark, China, Iceland, Israel, Ukraine, France, etc.). We speak the universal language of dance, unrestricted by any censorship or political, cultural, ethnic, religious or social boundaries. Artistic director of the company – choreographer Agnija Šeiko is recognizable for her interdisciplinary approach, distinctive aesthetics, sensitive social topics and the variety of forms.
Photo: Dragan Jereminov