IF YOU EVER NEED MY LIFE, COME AND TAKE IT

Victor Hugo Pontes

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José Caldeira
José Caldeira
José Caldeira
José Caldeira
José Caldeira
José Caldeira
José Caldeira
Paulo Pimenta
Paulo Pimenta
José Caldeira
Paulo Pimenta

The dramatical structure sustains the movement, but the narrative loses its linearity in a way that the viewer can see what he chooses to see in a dance version of Chekhov. Once the narrative is set and the agents are found (characters, connections, conflict, climax, denouement, etc.), the idea is to strip away the plot in a way that it becomes both danceable and recognisable, reaching a choreographic composition which overcomes hypothetical divergent lines between theatre and dance, between text and wordless movement. The choreographer sets himself the challenge of using text as a starting point. The play The Seagull is, in itself, a series of attempts at creating and existing. In fact, contemplating the creative act is one of the strongest points in this Chekhov play and one of the most interesting for Victor Hugo Pontes.

Victor Hugo Pontes was part of the creative team behind the play The Seagull, directed by Nuno Cardoso, as well as the works Platonov and The Three Sisters, also by Chekhov. His fascination with the Russian author also led him to direct On the Harmful Effects of Tobacco. Now he etches out a dance performance from one of the most important contemporary plays, despite dating back to the end of the 19th century. For Victor Hugo Pontes, some of the most important aspects of Chekhov’s plays are the plots based around commonplace events, the delineation of characters as ordinary human beings, and the way it plays with the creative act, a sort of theatre-within-thetheatre avant la lettre. The trivial turned tragic, ordinary life turned creation.

According to Jovan Hristić, ‘Chekhov introduced the concept of time into drama (…), carrying and transforming his heroes’ lives’. In this new performance, Victor Hugo Pontes aims to embody this idea, working with dancers from different generations and backgrounds, dancers who have led different lives and have worked different languages in order to achieve a new language, pushing the limits of possibility of the dance-within-the-dance based on the succession and suspension of time, and the way in which only during the creative act is it possible to control these two movements.

Credits

Artisitc Direction and Coreography Victor Hugo Pontes. Set Design F. Ribeiro. Technical Direction and Light Design Wilma Moutinho. Original Music Rui Lima and Sérgio Martins. Dramaturgical Support Madalena Alfaia. Choreography Assistant Marco da Silva Ferreira. Performers Allan Falieri, Ángela Diaz Quintela, Daniela Cruz, Félix Lozano, Jorge Mota, Leonor Keil, Marco da Silva Ferreira, Valter Fernandes, Vera Santos and Victor Hugo Pontes. Intern Dancer Afonso Cunha. Production Director Joana Ventura. Co-produced by Nome Próprio, Centro Cultural de Belém, Centro Cultural Vila Flor, Teatro Nacional São João and Teatro Viriato. Residency Support Novo Ciclo ACERT and O Espaço do Tempo. Support Clube Português de Cinematografia - Cineclube do Porto.


Playing time 105’

Ages 12 years old and up


Project supported by the Portuguese Government – Culture Ministry / Directorate General for the Arts.

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2016
4 February

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