This is the video of a rehearsal at CCN Montpellier May, 2015.
Fragmenting an early romantic Aria and its melody, words, narrative, emotions and gestures. Dissociating the body of a historical chant. Pieces of a whole accumulate, loop, delay and change their speed to form a new musical structure.
This is a singing sculpture for an installative performance, which explores the materiality of the early romantic Aria Che faro senza Euridice in relation to silent gestures from romantic ballet.
Che faro senza Euridice by C.W. Gluck is taken from the Opera Orfeo ed Euridyke and premiered in 1762. Orpheus, god of music and poetry, goes to the underworld to bring back his lover Euridice and fails because he cannot resist to look around to see the body that speaks to him.
The sublime that is inherent to this romantic aria gets fragmented and we can glimpse more precisely into its details without being taken by the overflow of the sadness and longing inherent to the songs’ narrative. Repetition, slowing down and speeding up, leaving gaps, varying volume, silence, getting stuck and flowing again are creating a choreographic structure whose base is a song. The project is called Operation Orpheus precisely because it is about dissecting the Aria’s body, having a look at the pieces and placing them back together again.
The partitions of the original song are standing around on music stands, so one can read the song in its original tempo and order, while the Performer enacts her deformed version of it. While singing she performs classical gestures along with the text. They point at the romantic period, when the gesture was considered the language of the silent dancer. Only through this system of gestural semiotics, dance could leave its role as light intermission in Operas and gain a sovereign status in the theatre hierarchy. In Operation Orpheus, two languages meet in one body, that were rivals in western theatre history: the chant of an Aria and the gestural language of classical ballet.
choreography/performance: Jule Flierl
costume: Dorothée Hénon
thanks to: Bojana Bauer, Loic Touzé, Anne Kerzerho, Adaline Anobile