Damien Jalet is a choreographer, dancer , singer and teacher from belgian and french nationality. After his first studies in theatre at the I.N.S.A.S. (National Institute of the Performing Arts, Brussels) he shifted to contemporary dance studying it in Belgium and in New York. He started his dance career with Wim Vandekeybus on the show The Day of Heaven and Hell inspired by the life and work of Pier Paolo Pasolini in 1998. he also danced in this period with choreographers such as Ted Stoffer and Christine De Smedt.
In 2000 he began an intense collaboration with Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui as his artistic partner within the company LES BALLETS C. DE LA B . He danced and created roles in Rien de rien (2000), Foi (2003),Tempus Fugit (2004), and Myth (2006).
In 2002 he co-signed the piece D'avant in collaboration with Cherkaoui, Luc Dunberry and Juan Kruz Diaz de Garaio Esnaola for the Schaubühne Am Lehniner Platz , piece still touring through the world as repertoire piece of Sasha Waltz and guests .
in 2005 he co-directed the short movie The Unclear Age with Erna Ómarsdóttir and the movie makers Dumspiro produced by les Ballets C de la B, the same year together with Erna Ómarsdóttir, Gabriela Fridriksdóttir and Raven he created the piece Ofaett (Unborn) for the Theatre National de Bretagne. For the 175th birthday of Belgium , on the invitation of Rosas , he choreographs in duet with Cherkaoui "ik hou van u-je t'aime tu sais " a bal modern danced by simultaneously 35000 people through all the country .
In 2006 he created the short duet Aleko for the competition of the Museum of Contemporary Art of Aomori, Japan, in collaboration with Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui and won the best foreign choreography prize . He has been collaborating with the French director Arthur Nauzyciel and the actress Anne Brochet for the creation of L'image of Samuel Beckett for the celebration of his centenary in Dublin, and is still being performed with the actress Lou Doillon and musician Mileece.
On the invitation of the philosopher Giorgio Agemben, he also signed the choreography for the contemporary opera Il cielo sulla terra from Stefano Scodanibbio, for the Opera of Stuttgart.
In 2007 he 's invited to create a solo for the interdisciplinary exhibition "dysfashional" in Luxemburg , where he creates the solo "venus in furs" inspired by a costume of the japanese Undercover/Jun Takahashi.
In 2008 together with Nick Knight and Bernhard Willhelm he directed the video men in tights, presentation of the Willhelm Men's collection 2008-09, this being a first step of an artistic collaboration with the designer. He also signed the choreographic work of Julius Caesar for the American Repertory Theater, Boston and Ordet for the festival d'Avignon 2008, both pieces directed by Arthur Nauzyciel.
In March 2008 he premiered three spells at the Tokyo International Arts Festival, a triptic of short pieces with original soundtrack and live music by Christian Fennesz.
In 2009 he played a key role in Le musée de la mer, the first play of the writer Marie Darrieussecq, translated by Sjon (Bjork 's lyricist) directed by Nauzyciel and shown at the National Theatre of Reykjavik. Simultaneously he co-directed "Transaquania-out of the blue"with Erna Omarsdottir and Gabreilla Fridriksdottir for the Icelandic Dance Company, in the mythical Blue Lagoon of Iceland.
That same year he co-directed "Black Marrow" for the company Chunky Move with Erna Omarsdottir, which was premiered at the Melbourne Arts festival with an original soundtrack by Ben Frost and a setting by visual artist Alexandra Mein. He choreographed and danced in the video You don't know love by the Indie Rock bandEditors, which was directed by Arni and Kinski and shot by cinematographer Christopher Doyle .
In 2010 he co-signed the piece "Babel" together with Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, with a team of 13 dancers, 5 musicians and a stage setting by Antony Gormley wich received two prestigious Olivier Awards ( best new dance production and best achievement in dance for Gormley) and the Benois de la danse for best choreography at the Bolshoi, Moscow.
he teams up again with Omarsdottir and Fridriksdottir for the creation of "transaquania-into thin air" second part of the piece performed in the Blue Lagoon for the icelandic dance company , wich receive three Grimman awards nominations.
He signed the script and choreography of the Arni and KInski's music video "surrender" from Olof Arnalds in duet with Bjork .
In 2011 he s working on the choreography of Avignon's festival opener "Jan Karski" directed by Nauzyciel and is presenting for the same festival 's "sujet à vif" , a collaboration with Nigerian dancer Qudus Tuareg named " Sill /life".
Damien Jalet also studied Ethnomusicology and polyphonic singing with Giovanna Marini, Christine Leboutte, Nando Acquaviva, and Nicole Casalongua amongst others.
He has taught dancers in many international institutions and companies: CHARLEROI/DANSES (Brussels), ImPulsTanz (Vienna), NEEDCOMPANY (Brussels), CHUNKY MOVE (Melboune), Biwako Hall (Kyoto), Panetta Movement Center (New York), HJS (Amsterdam), Iceland Arts Academy (Reykjavik), centros de las artes (Mexico) amongst others.