This Wild Card offer, organised by Ultima Vez, included a one-week workshop with Jennifer Lacey and a one-week residency in Brussels. Workshop Foundation selected the Hungarian artist Reka Szabo and 4Culture the Romanian dancer Catrinel Catana for this Wild Card slot.

Jennifer Lacey’s workshop called “Playing dilettant dramaturge - What Criteria for What Purpose?” addressed dramaturgical issues such as the context and meaning of a dance, the relation between process and product, the incorporation and breaking of codes, the construction of personal freedom through process, and of social freedom through form. Morning sessions were devoted to variations on Authentic Movement. In the afternoons these were extended into trios of artists and dramaturges. These different activities were furthermore embedded in a rehearsal score borrowed from the piece Les assistantes (2008) by Jennifer Lacey and Nadia Lauro.

The subsequent residence week at Ultima Vez consisted in costless use of rehearsal space and basic technical equipment to two participants of the workshop. Following Jennifer Lacey’s workshop, the residency offered the opportunity to digest and reflect on the content of the workshop and relate it to the artists own chorographical/dramaturgical practices.


report by Reka Szabo (HU)

I felt I was an unusual applicant. I’m not a promising dancer in the beginning of her career. I’m the artistic director of The Symptoms – a quite well recognised company in Hungary that works on the border of dance and theatre. My company is 10 years old this year, I’ve been creating pieces for 15 years, recently rather as a director and not as a performer. Lately I felt I should leave my habitual tracks, and it would be very important to be alone, to encounter myself. That’s why I applied.

I spent two weeks in Brussels. First week I took part in Jennifer Lacey’s workshop at Rosas studio, from 10 till 5 every day. Our theme was dramaturgy of dance. A nice, international group came together from all over the world (Australia, Canada, Austria, Finland, Romania, Belgium, and Hungary).

First I was disappointed, because my expectation was to go into dance and physical

challenges more deeply, and to go into the dramaturgy of movements in a more practical way. For example a sequence of movements taken as a starting point we would create little pieces by different dramaturgical solutions, ideas, and then we would analyse them. But the workshop was more general, more theoretical. Jennifer offered only frames for the work, gave slight hints to the group, so that we could shape the events of the workshop as autonomous creators. Lots of fundamental questions were discussed. I realized that one of my basic topics hasn’t changed for the last 15 years: what are abstract and non-abstract, what is their relationship. Why do we feel a movement abstract or not, and how do we perceive them.

The group was very open and supportive; we worked in a good and loose atmosphere. I met many artists whose thinking, attention and presence was very inspiring for me. I hope we’ll meet some time again.

On the second week, I had the opportunity to work in Ultima Vez’ brand new studio. The company had their premiere in Venice that time, so I didn’t have the chance to meet them.

Every day I spent 6-7 hours in the studio. I haven’t been in a situation like this for a long time now: I was not disturbed by phone calls, I was not distracted by the administrative problems of my company, and I could pay attention to myself instead of handling constantly the problems of 5-10 people. I didn’t have a definite plan to create a production, but rather to recharge myself and to anatomize my fundamental questions. And so it happened. The different environment and the conditions simply made work that often doesn’t work at home. I thought I recommend in Budapest a studio-exchange among the companies – watching another square of the world, breathing in different air during your yoga exercises makes you energetic and motivated. During the week I moved back to my body and lots of ideas came up for a solo piece. It was very nice to work without any

compulsion to conform. I would like to work on my solo. I’ll only have a chance to do so on the spring of 2013 because of the schedule of my company.

The working and living conditions were excellent: the organizers were helpful, the

accommodation was spacious and quite in the centre, the studios were beautiful and inspiring. At the Rosas the macrobiotic kitchen, at Ultima Vez the great atmosphere of the operative staff and the space were special. My family (3 years old daughter and husband) for the second week accompanied me. The organizers were sympathetic: they let my family join me and stay with me. I made a showing for them from the material I had for the end of the week. Maybe the key to the balcony was the only thing I missed. Thank you for this great opportunity!

report by Catana Catrinel (RO)

The scholarship of Jardin d’Europe meant for me the amazing opportunity to be around Jennifer Lacey and of many other choreographers and play writers, working together and enjoying every moment of it. It was a unique experience to me, and also an experiment regarding my own capacity of opening myself and communicating like an artist. At the beginning I was a little frightened and confused because I never studied dramaturgy before, in school, dramaturgy meant only to have a good story of the performance and everythingwas fine.

I discovered that dramaturgy is the first critical eye, the person that makes the facilitation,the analysing, that can bring the unexpected angles, opens the potential of an idea and also that a play writer is like a translator or a mild interrogator .

We had several tasks to develop during this five days that I spent with Jennifer and with another ten very interesting people like, Jack Hauser, Satu Herrala, Anna Hakinen, Reka Szabo, Jeroen, Miriah Brennan, Noha etc. One of the task was to make a team of three and choose one of this category, the mover (the person that had to “dance”), the witness 1 (that had his/her own interpretation of what the mover was doing) and witness 2 (responsible for the safety and the timing of the mover). I discovered, different ways to deal with a body in movement, not only to analyse the shapes of the body but also to analyse myself through a body in movement. I have learned to look for the symptoms as well.

I got to know an Interesting filter proposal (watching the performance through someone else’s filter) that we had to manage with, the discussion about the relation between process and product, the necessary non abstract dance, and the list may continue. I enjoyed the scores that Jennifer gave to us, the observation practice, the reading moments, the writing about the criteria, the condition of a particular situation, the interpretive practice, the arrangement of the space and the last but not the least the resting together.

Another helpful and really nice ‘game’ was to play the dramaturge or the artist, so I chose tobe the artist for several team of play writers and I just spoke and showed frames from my new piece that I continued in one of the beautiful studio that Ultima Vez offered me. Many thanks to the whole team Ultima Vez who took care of me and my needs that week.


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