Centre Chorégraphique National de Créteil

Vertikal

2018 production

Hip-hop defying gravity.

With devices designed by Retouramont, a dance company specializing in aerial techniques, choreographer Mourad Merzouki leaves the ground and plays with gravity. His new production confronts the very much floor-based hip-hop dance with verticality. Dancers dash in the air, they leap, climb and fly, bringing poetry and weightlessness to the vocabulary of hip-hop movement. Merzouki carries on his process of breaking down genre barriers, disrupting our frames of references.


Press

"A brilliantly inventive deployment of hip-hop technique." (+) New York Times

"The dancers take to the air, freed - for an instant - from gravity." (+) Euronews


Statement of intent

"In this new creation, I wish to approach a new space, that of verticality. Using a device designed by compagnie Retouramont and Benjamin Lebreton, and accompanied by ten dancers on stage, I will confront an environment where movement plays with gravity.

Throughout my creations, I have constantly sought to discover what was unknown to me, whether it be classical music, digital arts, contemporary dance… It is also the desire to return to the material, physical, after having explored the third dimension in Pixel.

Everything seems possible, both falling and rising. The connection to the ground, so essential for the hip-hop dancer, will be fundamentally changed. The games of contact between the performers will be jostled : the dancers will be able to be either a base and a carrier or, on the contrary, an acrobat, a puppet animated by the counterweight of his partners on the ground.

This new dance "surface" will lead me to question the concept of scenic space – how can one appropriate the air through dance ? – on the relationship between individuals on stage, obvious here by the notion of link, the wire that holds the body.

New converging lines will emerge in this research. The devices used in vertical dance bring new sensations, a form of lightness, the feeling of flying, illusion.

Redrawing the game palette and disrupting our frames of reference while preserving the vocabulary of hip-hop dance will animate me in this creation.

I will continue to explore the relationship between dance and Armand Amar’s music, in which the different worlds are combined with infinite poetry.

The set and lighting design will contribute to foster dialogue and harmonize these crossovers.

I think of this new opus as a hybridisation and an inversion of the dance codes, down to the wire, in balance !"

Mourad Merzouki

Distribution

Artistic direction and choreography Mourad Merzouki
Music design Armand Amar
Aerial stage design Fabrice Guillot / Compagnie Retouramont

Assistant to the choreographer Marjorie Hannoteaux
Lighting design Yoann Tivoli, assisted by Nicolas Faucheux
Stage design Benjamin Lebreton
Costume design Pascale Robin, assisted by Gwendoline Grandjean
Apparatus set up Yves Fauchon
Aerial training Isabelle Pinon

Artists Francisca Alvarez, Rémi Autechaud, Kader Belmoktar, Sabri Colin, Nathalie Fauquette, Pauline Journé, Vincent Lafif, Maud Payen / Alba Faivre, Manon Payet, Teddy Verardo

Additional music credits Isabel Sörling, vocals – Sarah Nemtanu, violin – Grégoire Korniluk, cello – Julien Carton, piano – Armand Amar, percussions – Anne-Sophie Versnaeyen, viola, orchestrations – Vincent Joinville assisted by Jérémy Gaucher, recording, mixing, sound design

Production

Producer Centre chorégraphique national de Créteil et du Val-de-Marne - Compagnie Käfig
Co-producers Biennale de la danse de Lyon 2018, Scène nationale du Sud-Aquitain, Maison des Arts de Créteil
With the support of Comédie de Valence - centre dramatique national Drôme-Ardèche
Thanks to Denis Welkenhuyzen, who made this artistic encounter happen