Exposition universelle

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The 2011 archive

Rachid Ouramdane

Paris / Created in 2011

Exposition universelle © DR


How can an ideology be embodied in sensible forms? What expectations of power does the work of art serve? What marks does political history leave on the body? It is through a solo that Rachid Ouramdane decided to approach these questions, or rather through a duet, since the musician Jean-Baptiste Julien will accompany him on stage in this exploration. Totally in keeping with the show Des témoins ordinaires, for which he met people who had been tortured, the dancer continues his committed reflection, here on the way in which aesthetics have developed in connection with politics, whether in a relationship of subservience (socialist realism obviously comes to mind) or, conversely, of protest. The choreographer, however, unlike his previous approach, chose here not to favour a determined historical period or specific milieu. A way of more directly reaching the universal as the title of this new creation indicates. Rachid Ouramdane is particularly interested in the way an individual - a politician, a sport or music icon - manages to inflame the crowds. What are the physiological or psychological motivations on which the cult of the personality bases itself? What is the kinaesthetic phenomenon at work that, in a stadium or a demonstration, concentrates energies and allows excesses of violence that would not be possible elsewhere? On what does this "thrill of the event" that dispossesses the individual of his singularity rest? These questions run through Exposition universelle, which aims to restore, on stage, the power of fascination to better strip it down and expose its mechanisms. A play that proves endowed with a political acuity that goes beyond the necessary. MF


conception and chorégraphy Rachid Ouramdane
music Jean-Baptiste Julien
lighting Yves Godin, Stéphane Graillot
video Jacques Hoepffner
costumes and make up La Bourette
outside glance Gilbert Gatoré

with Rachid Ouramdane and musician Jean-Baptiste Julien



coproduction Bonlieu Scène nationale Annecy, Théâtre de la Ville-Paris, Musée de la Danse (Rennes), Réseau Open Latitudes
avec le soutien du Centre national de Danse contemporaine d'Angers, du Théâtre universitaire de Nantes et de la SPEDIDAM.

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