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The 2022 archive

Jan Martens

Antwerp / Created in 2022

A ballet corps in the Cour d'honneur to think about how to regenerate our society, accompanied by a resolutely modern harpsichord.

FUTUR PROCHE, Jan Martens, 2022 © Christophe Raynaud de Lage / Festival d'Avignon


What if the discovery of an instrument could change the world of a choreographer? With FUTUR PROCHE, Belgian choreographer Jan Martens operates a shift in his rhythmic dance, accompanied by a contemporary harpsichord. With fifteen dancers from the Opera Ballet Vlaanderen, two children, and Polish harpsichordist Goska Isphording, he invites us to a moving exploration of whether we can change society, bodies, or ways of thinking, in a time of climate crises and pandemics. Through aesthetically varied works, the choreographer plays with the codes of his virtuoso performers by making them experience a true “presence” on stage. If thirty-eight years after welcoming the ballet of the Opéra de Paris in the Cour d’honneur, the Festival d’Avignon once again invites a ballet corps, it is to give Jan Martens the opportunity to showcase, in this great symbolic space, the vision of a world able to transform itself.

Opera Ballet Vlaanderen
The only professional, classically- and academically-trained ballet company in Belgium, the Royal Ballet of Flanders was founded in Antwerp in 1969 by Jeanne Brabants, who directed it until 1984. Several directors succeeded her, including Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui from 2015 to 2022, who opened up the ballet to collaborations with contemporary choreographers after the merging of the ballet with the Royal Flemish Opera under the new name Opera Ballet Vlaanderen.


With Zoë Ashe-Browne, Viktor Banka, Tiemen Bormans, Claudio Cangialosi, Morgana Cappellari, Brent Daneels, Matt Foley, Misako Kato, Nicola Leahey, Ester Pérez, Taichi Sakai, Niharika Senapati, Paul Vickers, James Vu Anh Pham, Rune Verbilt, Kirsten Wicklund and children in alternation Merel Amandt, Gaiane Caforio, Caroline Gratkowksi and Elodie Grunewad

Choreography Jan Martens
Music Peteris Vasks, Janco Verduin, Anna Sigríður Þorvaldsdóttir, Erkki Salmenhaara, Graciane Finzi, Aleksandra Gryka
Harpsichord Goska Isphording
Set design Joris van Oosterwijk
Lights Elke Verachtert
Video Stijn Pauwels
Sound Brecht Beuselinck
Costumes Jan Martens, Joris van Oosterwijk
Dramaturgy Tom Swaak
Danse rehearsals Tara Jade Samaya
Artistic advice Rudi Meulemans, Marc Vanrunxt, Carolina Maciel de França


Production Opera Ballet Vlaanderen
Co-production Festival d’Avignon
With the support of GRIP, François Ryelandt for the harpsichord

Jan Martens is an associate artist of Opera Ballet Vlaanderen.

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