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Artists, scientists, activists, teachers and young people are invited to contribute digital postcards, poems or texts on the theme of "HOT WATER - Water, Peace & War". Deadline: March 9, 2015

A panel of special guests will discuss selected contributions, and respond to online audience, live on the Tap, and at Balance-Unbalance conference, hosted by Arizona State University, USA, March 27-29, 2015.

This call is to celebrate Waterwheel's first 3 years and the upcoming website revamp. Prepare your media now and upload when the NEW Waterwheel website goes live. Accepted formats are video, images, animation, audio, text or slideshows - see requirements here

Each contribution uploaded onto with the keyword HOT2015, will go into the draw to win a music CD.

Please share :)


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Modul-dance experience. By Tina Valentan

Delovni naslov @ Move to Maribor

I was recommended by Plesna Izba Maribor as one of the modul-dance artists in 2012. They also promised to be the main producers of the performance and cover the premiere, so all I needed to get on board were at least three partners. I was seducing them in Barcelona and gave it all to catch their attention, which was not easy. It felt like I was a product on sale and they are buying. There was no big interest but in the end I got what I wanted; three research spaces/residencies, one in Portugal, one in Denmark and one in Slovenia. They offered working space, accommodation, travel costs and per diems, so all the basic needs were covered and I could focus on work, away from trivial obligations in my home town. Therefore going abroad seemed very beneficial for developing work and growing as an artist and as a human being.

New environment was refreshing and revitalising. Being in touch with a new culture opened up curiosity and senses, which was also helpful in the creative process because we were more alert for details. In Faro, Portugal we (Luka and me) were totally motivated for work out and discipline. We were waking up at around six in the morning to meditate, rehearsed through the day and went to run in the evening – across town, by the coast, pass the palm trees. It did not correspond with the laid back nature typical for the warm south but we were so grateful for the big, bright studio and the Mediterranean winds were giving us strength. In Copenhagen we rehearsed in a black box, after the theatre closed the season, so pretty cut off from events and other artists, which influenced the nature of our material. We produced something minimal, slow and intimate, which was really useful for us later on because I got pregnant before the premiere and we had to throw out all the dynamic material and forget about big movements.

We could take good advantage from the research and residency modules. The time we could afford to try out, think and re-think was precious. We could go to many places inside the creation, shifted ideas and had a chance to shape material that was developed through sharing our fascinations and knowledge. The premiered version of Working Title framed all those different off springs into a distinct composition, determined by fatal decisions concluded in the last faze of creation. Because we let the performance develop rather than forced it into a predetermined shape it got an unpredictable form and content, for which it seems to me, it was made with a force bigger than us humans. This life force was something we wanted to come through in the performance and touch the audience. We did not get much chance to try out the effect on audiences because I was not able to perform any more and after me giving birth we were not able to sell the piece. This is where we were not so successful. It was clear from the beginning that being a modul-dance artist does not promise you a tour but maybe the last two modules could be organized more carefully. Perhaps they could run another selection from all the finished works; meaning all directors of production houses would watch all videos and than they choose some to tour. Otherwise mostly those artist that got support from big production houses that have money get the chance for some re-runs. Probably too many artists accumulate over years for something like that. But in the end does size matter?

There are still ideas to make a new version of our performance and from a solo extend it into a duet. We will see about that after the next funding call. Before that I will dance in a piece called Hunting Season, choreographed by Malin Tomašik, so you better watch out for this one.

Picture: © Saša Huzjak

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satélites©s&v - Versão 6

When José Laginha, from Capa/Devir (a cultural structure in the sunny south coast of Portugal) introduced us to modul-dance network we knew very little of it, except that some other Portuguese choreographers (Tânia Carvalho and Cláudia Dias) had also been supported by it in the previous editions.

The meeting in Barcelona, in November 2012, was the first moment we got to grasp the dimension of this network. It was surprising to see the variety of artists, programmers and their specific projects/contexts of action. Although big in scale, the meeting seemed to have the right balance of formality and informality for an actual exchange to happen, and we were caught by its intensity and the way everyone was focused to make it significant and useful.

In that meeting we found affinities with a group of four partners that hosted our project - Satellites - in several residencies over the year. They were Arts Station Foundation, Dance Ireland, Duncan Dance Centre and El Graner. Each place had its own atmosphere and each had inevitably a very specific influence in the way we approached our research. It’s intriguing to notice that no matter how concrete and precise your artistic research is, the characteristics of the studio, its temperature, its privacy, the place where you sleep, the food, the streets you pass by, the familiarity or not with the language, the people you interact with and many other details will work on your research stretching it into unpredictable morphologies.

One can almost draw a big circle in a map connecting those four structures we have collaborated with, starting in Dublin, drawing a soft curve until Poznań, then down to Athens and from there making our way up again to Barcelona. Curiously, like Lisbon, all of these cities make part of some kind of geographical periphery. Not to force a geopolitical layer to this coincidence, but there is something quite interesting in our orbit through this constellation of countries that have a lot of similarities in their recent social and economical histories; specially when one of the main axis of our research in Satellites is about the tension between centre and periphery and the atomization of the centre.

Satellites' first residency was in Poznań and it was marked by a particular research on movement and voice. The residency happened in the same space we had presented one of our works, in the context of Malta Festival, half a year before. It makes a lot of sense when there’s continuity in the relation between artists and partners, and modul-dance just made this possible. As it usually happens, the first residency is where we end up doing everything we had previously thought about the project, as if to take those first preconceived ideas out of the way so that other things coming from the experience of doing may emerge. Not to forget the open class we were invited to give to a vigorous and enthusiastic local community.

Then, in Dublin, we've continued the research ending with an informal open-doors rehearsal where we could share some of the embryonic material with a few spectators and discuss the concepts that were being set as a basis for the work. Work-in-progress showings are something that we tend to avoid; yet, the thing that made sense wasn't exactly what we shared but that it served as a pretext for dialogue. We had also the opportunity to discover and be inspired by Casement’s complex and wonderful life (thanks Paul, for The Black Diaries).

In Athens, we've worked for a week mainly on sound and text, using the surroundings to capture different sounds and test a few ideas about the interaction of the body with the space mediated by a recorded voice. It's impossible not to visit the city and be completely drawn into one of he world's oldest cities, especially when the person who's hosting you is such a passionate guide. In the following week we presented a piece of ours in Arc for dance Festival that had a small focus on modul-dance artists.

Finally, in Barcelona we where able to invite two collaborators of our project, and share some of the ideas that we had been exploring previously, testing them with other bodies and amplifying their possibilities. In El Graner, the term residency was accurately employed because we would sleep and work in the same building. Other artists were also developing their own projects and the fact that we shared a physical space together fostered a genuine curiosity for each other's works.

Now that modul-dance's edition is coming to an end we feel privileged to having been part of it. It is clear that it isn't just about the time you spend in the network, or the obvious benefits of being supported by it; but it's also about encouraging dialogue and setting out grounds for future collaborations.

Picture: © Sofia Dias & Vítor Roriz

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The modul-dance selected artist Eric Minh Cuong Castaing / Cie. Shonen is working on a new project. Entitled "School of moon", it will be a performance for 10 children, 6 robots nao and 2 dancers. The project is a metaphor for a new world colonized by miniature bodies, evocating a world of tomorrow. This dream resizes the stage, which is changed by the use of new technology too. This cel- ebration of the construction of a micro-society, between robotics and pagan dance, questions our im- pregnating abilities, fascination for artificial, and free will.

SCHOOL OF MOON : " robot, kid, war, love & dance..." from SHONEN on Vimeo.

More information here.  

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Meeting the ghost. By Antje Pfundtner

Antje Pfundtner_Nimmer for kids © Anja Beutler (2)

When I first heard about modul-dance and realised that 20 European dance houses would be taking part in this project I thought I’d struck the jackpot.

However, on a personal level, modul-dance remained a ghost in my eyes. Indeed, I did have my 3 partners with all of whom I had shared unquestionably fruitful experiences.

But somehow it was still a mystery to me how this huge network could have really worked between us all and how we could communicate. Meetings with my partners were on a one-to-one basis when I visited them. I choose the word “visit” as I was not seeking a residency but instead opted to visit them and engage in a number of experiments at their destinations or their festivals that were linked to my research at the time. Hellerau was the "only" partner who was able to handle the "presentation-modul", and I am delighted and thankful for that. I say "able" as I have realised that the people involved in the modul-dance project like to make reference to the "weak" or "strong" partners one comes to rely on. I discovered that Hellerau constituted a strong partner as they were able to back the artistic project with funds. Perhaps I have won the jackpot after all? (not to say that I, personally did not find my other partners strong as well).

Indeed, I am very pleased to be able to appoint Hellerau as my co-producer/partner for the future! And this is of course thanks to our experience with modul-dance. So, I won the jack-pot afterall!?? But is the modul-dance jackpot not more in the sense of widening your European connections and engaging in personal and artistic dialogue with many European partners!?? And shouldn’t that be the real jackpot that all of these modul-dance-partners are already being inter-connected enabling artists to use an entire network speeding up the dissemination of artistic work because artists do not need to approach each party individually!?

And is this the reason why the network stays a ghost to me, as I have not been able to connect to new partners! ? Or is it due to the fact that Hellerau is a German partner I knew previously, and this does not feel very European to me!? However, perhaps it is because at these modul-dance conferences I met so many people who are involved with the network who then disappear again? Or is it because I had a different concept of how dissemination should operate? Maybe, therefore, I should simply let my own image go. As images always remain a ghost.

First I thought that my personal problem was that I was not seeking a residency. Yet, I believe residencies are perchance the best way to engage in direct, personal dialogue with an institution - thus getting to know the ghost. Therefore, I decided to visit the two partners I knew were unable to present my work but were supporting the artistic research for it. And without going into detail, both visits - the festival with Goran/Kino Šiška and the modul-dance-festival in Stockholm - were highly friendly, enriching experiences. But then again, I knew Goran from before and I knew my main contributors from Dansens Hus. They seemed real to me before. But despite the advantage of such a huge network with so many houses I had formerly been unfamiliar with, they still somehow remained a ghost to me.

Even when I recently performed my latest work nimmer in Hellerau I was fortunate to meet other modul-dance artists but no modul-dance institution. But perhaps that fits in with the subject I was working on in that piece, which ist he subject of "disappearance".

However, I state in this work that "nothing can disappear. It all comes back again, doesn't it?"

I know one day I will meet these ghosts. I merely need to learn how to call them.

Antje Pfundtner in Gesellschaft

Picture: © Anja Beutler

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audiovisual dance performance

On the edge of dreams »THÆTA« issues light and shadow of subconscious ego processes seeking theta waves in a borderland state.

Performance times during CYNETART festival 2014:

FRI 14th of November, 8pm
SAT 15th of November, 8pm
venue: Festspielhaus Hellerau, Great Hall
in Dresden, Germany

„Diese Veranstaltung wird ermöglicht durch das NATIONALE PERFORMANCE NETZ im Rahmen der Gastspielförderung Tanz aus Mitteln des Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien sowie der Kultur- und Kunstministerien der Länder.“


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