Sasha Waltz and Guests Perform in Tbilisi for GIFT festival

German choreographer Sasha Waltz and her dance company performed ‘Travelogue 1- Twenty to Eight’ on the Rustaveli Theatre stage for the Georgian International Festival of Arts (GIFT) 2015.

The GIFT festival was opened October 17th and will last until November 17th. Georgian art lovers have the opportunity to see some of the world’s finest art masterpieces including: Sasha Waltz, Dmitry Krimov, Dada Masilo, Rimas Tuminas and many more.

Waltz is a German choreographer, dancer and leader of the dance company ‘Sasha Waltz and Guests’, which works with a constantly developing international network of production partners and guest performers. It shows approximately 70 performances worldwide every year, currently consisting of 20 productions.

The company was named an official ‘Cultural Ambassador of the European Union’ during its anniversary in 2013.

One of Waltz’s earlier works- ‘Travelogue – Twenty to Eight’ was performed on the Rustaveli Theatre stage on October 27th and 28th.

“Passionate and rough, painful and bizarre, aggressive and ironic, loaded with sex and full of the absurd,” Badische Zeitung, a German newspaper, wrote on the piece.

“This is a wonder in the history of modern dance,” Art Director of the GIFT Festival Keti Dolidze commented. “Sasha Waltz is the same as Ostermeier or Peter Brook in the theatre today. And this kind of high-level person is visiting Tbilisi and the GIFT festival! It truly is an outstanding event.”

Sasha Waltz studied dance in Amsterdam and furthered her education in New York. She went on to collaborate with various choreographers, musicians, artists and dancers and created her first independent choreographies.

The humour, aggression and sensuality of her choreographic work captures the attention of the audience. She uses concrete objects, sets, film editing techniques and the grotesque movements of the silent movies in her work.

“I try to understand the world. I observe a lot how people are with each other. I try to solve problems. I see what I don’t understand. So we work with these ideas on stage,” said Sasha Waltz.

Life in ‘Travelogue 1- Twenty to Eight’ is symbolized by the kitchen where five residents meet. Their lives, like their dances, are sometimes synchronized and sometimes chaotic. The movement vocabulary is expressive and emotional. The music is an important driving force in the story. ‘Travelogue’ has an original composition by Tristan Honsinger.

“It’s the question of how we live together; with different love scenes featured. And it’s also about a conflict of living in the communal apartment and sharing one kitchen,” Waltz said. “We have performed this piece in a variety of countries and I think it’s something universal that we are talking about. It’s very human. I have the feeling it will be understood by the Georgian people. I have the feeling from the people I’ve met that there is an incredible curiosity and openness.”

As a room, the kitchen can be a mirror of their lives where their rituals, habits, behaviours and manners are observed and their negative sides revealed. This reflection forms the relationship between the characters. Often nervous and lonely, they can’t find a way out from becoming the prisoners of a social structure.

“It’s our first time and I would love to come again. I’m open to any sort of adventure,” Waltz enthused.

Ana Akhalaia

29 October 2015 22:49