MÉDITERRANÉE

Spanish atmospheres, Latin temperament, sensuality and lust for life: these are the ingredients of MÉDITERRANÉE. It’s a programme that exclusively features creations by Spanish choreographers, varying in age and experience and each with his own style, but clearly kindred spirits as well. They all take an earthy, intuitive and emotional approach to dance, often flowing from the music that inspires them. Cayetano Soto has created a new duet specially for MÉDITERRANÉE and besides this Introdans is presenting the Dutch premieres of his successful works Conrazoncorazon and Sortijas. The young choreographer Jorge Pérez Martínez is also contributing a new creation, while the wonderful Rassemblement by Spain’s most famous choreographer, Nacho Duato, rounds off this sizzling programme.

Three premieres by Cayetano Soto

A key role in MÉDITERRANÉE is reserved for Cayetano Soto, originally from Barcelona and currently one of the most internationally sought-after choreographers. He is well-known for his strong, individual concepts and the technical challenges he presents to his dancers, especially in the complex partner work featured in his ballets. Ever since 2010 Introdans has regularly been presenting new creations by this Spanish dance-maker, and now with MÉDITERRANÉE the company is adding no less than three premiering works at once to the repertoire.

Sortijas, receiving its Dutch premiere in this programme, is one of the rare stand-alone duets in Soto’s oeuvre. He created it for the New York Ballet Hispánico in 2013. This choreography, set to sensitive music by the Mexican-American singer-songwriter Lhasa de Sela, is inspired by the circular bond – ‘sortijas’ means ‘rings’ – that connects generations of family members and friends. Soto also fully incorporates these round forms in his normally angular and sharp dance idiom. Sortijas presents a great challenge to dancers through the consistently restrained tension of the choreography as well as the extremely complicated and unusual lifts.

This is followed by a world premiere – also a duet – in which Soto more or less continues the theme and movement language of Sortijas. And then he shows a very different side to his work in the widely praised Conrazoncorazon. This choreography, created for the German company Gauthier Dance in 2015, is a powerful, highly physical work – witty, exuberant and fast, radiating dance enjoyment from the stage like a shower of sparks. With its unisex costumes and the riding helmets worn by the dancers, the ballet has sporty touch but is also sometimes reminiscent of the grotesque ‘Weimar Cabaret’ of the 1920s, as familiar from the legendary film musical Cabaret. The American press described Conrazoncorazon (‘With intellect and heart’) as one of the highlights of the renowned Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival.

World premiere by Jorge Pérez Martínez

Jorge Pérez Martínez has created the opening ballet in MÉDITERRANÉE, a world premiere in which he lets the full Introdans ensemble take the stage. This young Spaniard, born in the Castilla-La Mancha region, is still at the start of his choreographic career. He danced at Introdans in the period 2004-2016, where he also made his first ballet in 2009 which has since been followed by three other creations. Inspired by diverse music styles, Pérez Martínez aims above all to generate a feeling or mood in his choreographies. His work is flowing and organic, but he also likes ‘uncoordinated coordination’ which often gives his work a surprising twist.

Rassemblement by Nacho Duato

The Valencian choreographer Nacho Duato is a master in creating moods and sketching atmospheres. Following his dance career at the Nederlands Dans Theater, Duato grew to become the figurehead – and sex symbol – of contemporary dance in Spain. When making Rassemblement, originally conceived for the Swedish Cullberg Ballet, he took his inspiration from the plaintive resistance songs of the Haitian singer Toto Bissainthe. In warm-brown, impressionistic images Duato depicts the life of Haitian slaves: the oppression, the poverty, the sense of brotherhood. This sensual, overwhelming choreography is characterised by the rhythmic snaking movements, the arms and legs that sweep out in all directions and the rapid, agile duets.