Lucinda Childs is one of the iconic ´grand old ladies´ of American modern dance. Her movement language is absolutely unique: in an abstract, almost mathematical fashion the ‘queen of minimal dance’ uses relatively simple ballet and athletic movements to create hugely complex masterpieces. There is a special bond between Childs and Introdans: Introdans is the only Dutch company allowed to perform her work. In addition to existing top-level dance pieces the group has now also produced three world premieres of her work. In June 2020 Childs will be celebrating her 80th birthday. So that’s a great opportunity for Introdans to turn the spotlight on her exceptional work in the tribute programme ICOON, featuring some of the finest jewels in her wide-ranging oeuvre. A unique show highlighting a unique dance personality!

LIVE MUSIC | The Gelders Orkest conducted by Ryan Bancroft accompanies the first five performances of ICOON. Experience ICOON with live music in Stadstheater Arnhem (14 + 15 Feb), Zwolle theaters (18 Feb), Stadsschouwburg en De Vereeniging in Nijmegen (21 Feb) and Schouwburg Orpheus in Apeldoorn (22 Feb).


The latest creation by the ‘queen of minimal dance’ is Petricor. The world premiere of this work formed part of the Introdans programme MODERNE GIRLS (September 2018). Childs drew her inspiration for her latest choreography from the composition of the same name by Ludovico Einaudi, known among other things for his music for the French film hit Intouchables. This music piece is taken from his album Elements and the Italian composer wrote a new arrangement for piano and strings specially for Introdans. ‘Petricor’ is the scent released when rain falls on dry ground. The word derives from Ancient Greek: πέτρα (petra) means ‘stone’ and ἰχώρ (ichor) is, according to Greek mythology, the ‘blood of the gods’. The French designer Dominique Drillot created the decor, costumes and lighting for Petricor.

Canto Ostinato

Following on from Kilar the next work that Childs created for Introdans was Canto Ostinato, which proved a major hit at its premiere in 2015. “Simple, pure and wonderful,” said one reviewer. When making this work Childs took her inspiration from sections of the famous composition of the same name by Simeon ten Holt. The choreography displays an apparent simplicity: simple walking steps, low jumps, tight formations. But appearances are deceptive. The constantly shifting patterns, directions and rhythms reveal brilliant inventiveness and demand the utmost from the dancers.


“An electrifying work that passes by like a whirlwind.” That’s how Childs’ Concerto was described when first performed in the Netherlands in 2007. Concerto may well be her most ‘ballet-like’ choreography. Childs drives the dancers across the stage in constantly changing formations, set to the propulsive music of Henryk Mikołaj Górecki. With tiny variations and shifts she creates a kaleidoscopic jewel: seemingly very simple but in fact amazingly refined and masterful.

Chairman Dances

Chairman Dances, which entered the Introdans repertoire in 2009, is a spatial dance celebration set to the composition of the same name by John Adams. In this choreography – part of the widely praised opera Nixon in China – the dancers enter into a vibrant, fascinating interplay with the swinging music of the minimalist Adams. The repetitive movements generate a magical, poetic effect and at the same time are breathtakingly virtuoso. “Purifyingly beautiful,” wrote NRC Handelsblad.


Kilar is the first work that Lucinda Childs made specially for Introdans, in 2013. This choreography features an ingenious interaction with the Piano Concerto by (film) composer Wojciech Kilar. Childs’ movement language captivates the audience with her trademark sparkling, abstract and pure dance patterns. In this work she has challenged herself in a way new for herself by having the dancers perform in crinolines and with cubes of steel wire. This not only results in many fine images but also gives her work a more romantic touch.


choreography Lucinda Childs | music Ludovico Einaudi, Petricor | set, lighting, costume and audiovisual design Dominique Drillot | costumes made by Merlijn Koopman | repetiteur Diane Matla | duration + 13 minutes | world premiere 14 September 2018, Introdans, Arnhem

Canto Ostinato

choreography Lucinda Childs | music Simeon ten Holt, Canto Ostinato | costume-, lighting- and set design Dominique Drillot | costumes made by Merlijn Koopman | audiovisual design Dominique Drillot and Matthieu Stefani, inspired by Norman McLaren | repetiteur/ballet master Diane Matla | duration ± 13 minutes | world premiere 6 February 2015, Introdans, Arnhem


choreography Lucinda Childs | assistant to the choreographer Ty Boomershine | music Henryk Mikołaj Górecki, Concerto pour clavecin et cordes opus 40 | costume design Anne Masset | lighting design Dominique Drillot | repetiteur Diane Matla | duration ± 9 minutes | world premiere 16 September 1993, Lucinda Childs Dance Company, Lissabon (pt) | Premiere Introdans 2 February 2007, Arnhem

Chairman Dances

choreography Lucinda Childs | music John Adams, The Chairman Dances (from de opera Nixon in China) | set and lighting design Dominique Drillot | costume design Jean Michel Lainé | set made by Theatex | costumes made by Merlijn Koopman | repetiteur Jorge Pérez Martínez | duration + 14 minutes | world premiere 26 December 2000, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, Monte Carlo (mc) | premiere Introdans 6 February 2009, Arnhem


choreography Lucinda Childs | music Wojciech Kilar, Piano Concerto, the parts: Andante Con Moto, Corale, Toccata | set, costume and lighting design Dominique Drillot | costume design Merlijn Koopman, Martine Douma | construction frames Gebroeders Slegers | set made by Helldörfer Lasbedrijf and Showtex | repetiteur Diane Matla | duration ± 25 minutes | world premiere 8 February 2013, Introdans, Arnhem


ICOON, a powerful and swirling five-piece show that shows how intensely musical her mathematical choreographies are and also how much the Introdans dancers have made her work their own. (de Volkskrant on ICOON, 21-02-2020)

Childs’ dance patterns look simple and light, but the clarity is deceptive: every tiny mistake is visible and the airiness mustn’t look flighty, rather as if you’re being carried over water by phase shifts in repetitive music. It’s impossible to cheat or fudge anything here. The dancers have to listen, to the music and to each other. And they do this outstandingly. The little jumps, the diagonally extended arms and rear-lifted legs form a geometric universe. (de Volkskrant on ICOON, 21-02-2020)

The first four pieces came across as true dance-jewels: crafty and delicate, polished and rock-solid. (Movementexposed.com on ICOON 20-02-2020)

ICOON creates a hypnotic effect, while the dynamism sparkles in the dance on stage and is echoed from the orchestra pit. And with strikingly beautiful lighting, decor and costume design by Dominique Drillot. This special homage to Lucinda Childs with five of her masterpieces is an experience not to be missed. (Dans Magazine on ICOON, 19-02-2020)

About Petricor

In two other choreographies that Childs made specially for Introdans, Petricor (2018) to music by Ludovico Einaudi and Kilar (2013) to the filmic composition by Wojciech Kilar, Introdans shows how enchantingly beautiful it can be when eight, twelve or sixteen dancers cut through circular patterns with diamond shapes and parallel lines. Call it dancing mathematics, musical wanderings or moving figures – whatever the term, it’s exciting and lucid. As if Childs would like to tame human passions with a set square. (de Volkskrant on Petricor and Kilar, 21-02-2020)

About Canto Ostinato

In Canto Ostinato, two couples engage in more intricate duets, three-dimensional dynamic sculptures which contrast sharply with the rest of the choreographic design, mostly made of flat lines. How can so much happen with so little? When, at different moments, the four dancers face the audience, the impact of their verticality is enhanced by Drillot’s simple, animated and equally vertical lines, constantly strolling across the backdrop of the stage. It all blends to perfection with Simeon ten Holt’s cyclic composition, an ideal partner to this enterprise: the observation of what can happen to a whole formal universe by means of a single shift. (Movementexposed.com on Canto Ostinato, 20-02-2020)

About Concerto

The contrast-rich Concerto, where in some moments seven men and women accentuate the musical flourish in a staccato composition by Górecki with an almost flamboyantly raised arm. (Theaterkrant on Canto Ostinato, 16-02-2020)

About Kilar

The closing work Kilar surprises through its use of metal crinolines and cubes. The four women wear their ‘dresses’ as a frame on their shoulders. This forces them into controlled, cautious dance with straight shoulders and parallel-extended arms. We see living sculptures, all the more so due to the blue-tinted backlight which sometimes means we see only their silhouettes.(Theaterkrant on Kilar, 16-02-2020)

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