creative workshop with Cie. Pal Frenak (HU)

About the company

In 1998 Pál Frenák, who worked in France for a decade became a joint Hungarian-French company, based both in Budapest et Paris. Comprising a variety of classical and modern techniques the company's profile stands for a unique style and dance language. One of its most important characteristics is the use of mimics, sign language and body movements that reflect on various degrees (circus, theatre, fashion shows.)

The target audience were professional and semi-professional choreographers and dancers.
This was not especially a technical workshop, though the warm up led by Pál Frenák gave an insight to the technique he uses.
The aim of the workshop is to liberate the own creativity of the participants through working with their own way of expressing themselves.
The choreographer helps the dancers to clear out the inner content of their movements by pointing out their most personal achievements and cutting out useless movements and exaggerated expressivity to help instinctive gestures to emerge this way. The result of this work is self-awareness, self-consciousness combined with the capacity to leave the rational ground. In the workshop we will use a special scenographical element to work with, a platform from Frenak's earlier piece Frisson

feedback report Martina Griewank, chosen by the network partner Ultima Vez for this slot

My joy and surprise were big when I got the confirming mail for the Jardin d’Europe programme. I was very happy and honoured to have been chosen. I did not only get to know Budapest and Trafó, but also learned a lot during the workshop. It was an unexpected change to keep working with the company member Nelson Reguera instead of Pal Frenak himself. Nelson is a great teacher. Release is not one of my strongest points, therefore his training challenged me and he gave me useful corrections. At the beginning it was a bit disappointing to not be able to work with the director himself at all. But I understand he was recently operated and there would have been too little time to study “Frisson” in detail. We managed to put together quite something for the showing on the last day with Nelson, despite the little time we had. Three hours were too little with 17 persons.

This has been my first residency since I finished my dance studies this summer. For me it was great to have the workshop next to the studio time. It gave me a good start and boost into the day and then I could continue my own research afterwards in the studio.

Because I just graduated I used the first week mainly to find a bit myself and my “movement language”. Before leaving Belgium I had just done an intensive dance week of ballet. This became my departure point and I transformed the classical language into my body. I searched where the traditional ballet exercises would bring me to. Actually I took almost an entire “barre” and transferred it into my body and space. There came a solo out of this work. We had briefly discussed with Petra and Lilla of the workshop foundation if a coach was necessary. They offered to look for somebody if we wanted. I should have insisted on that. At the end of the week I felt the need for some feedback, but I didn’t dare to ask Nelson Reguera. He was very busy with the workshop and rehearsals.

During the second week I focused on themes I find important and universal in everyday life: e.g.: transformation and being stuck. In case of transformation I had a look at the different types: transformation from girl to woman, musical transformation, a snake as symbol for transformation,…

These I then tried to translate into my body. The second theme I investigated was: being stuck. Actually I came to it by accident, after rolling on the floor I arrived with my hands rooted in the floor. I decided to leave them there and see “where” my legs will bring me. From then on I started a quite intense and wrist-exhausting work. I made a leg / floor phrase. The rough structure is ready, but I still have to work on transitions and fluidity. Unfortunately the studio time was already over. I am very thankful for the scholarship. It gave me the possibility and space to listen to myself in my body and try to follow it by transforming it into space.

Martina Griewank

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