3ABSCHIED (3Adieux)

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Premiere: Sunday 28 March, 2010, 7.30 pm

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The dance evening 3Adieux sees an encounter between two original and exceptionally talented artists: the mathematical and at the same time expressive choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and the French choreographer Jérôme Bel, creator of controversial performances such as The Show Must Go On. The two found common ground for a joint project during the course of conversations about their work. This common ground consists primarily of their boundless curiosity to find out what the human body is capable of expressing, portraying and producing on stage.

The source of 3Adieux is the final part of Gustav Mahler’s Song of the Earth, the six-part cycle he composed in the fateful years 1907-09 based on ancient Chinese poetry rendered into German by Hans Bethge. At first sight, the complex and mysterious score stubbornly refuses to allow the kind of physical expression just mentioned and pursued by Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and Jérôme Bel. In 3Abschied only the final section of Mahler’s work is heard, the parting, repeated three times. 3Abschied is a work about silence, reticence and surprise that are translated into the reality of a physical stage performance.

“Precisely because of the risk of being caught up in repetition, as the title itself indicates, we will infuse this piece with our lifeblood. We will try to understand it and grasp it. It will not disclose itself to us readily, but like Gustav Mahler, who was not afraid when confronted by death, we will not be afraid, either.” (Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and Jérôme Bel)