Inspired by Mexican choreographer Esmeralda Vasquez, the Norwegian choreographer and dancer Ludvig Daae has created a dance performance which questions the terms “innovation” and “high culture”. With the help of three dancers he transforms Vasquez’ classic piece Dance To Dance To into a contemporary dance performance, as relevant today as when it premiered in 1783.
Daae wanted to challenge some of the conventions and compositional tools he has been taught and that are often found in staged dance. By diving into social dancing in general, and 1970’s disco dance in particular, his personal ideas concerning dramaturgy, virtuosity, use of the room, development, contrast and relations on stage as well as to the audience were thrown out the window. He was tired of his own taste and understanding of things, which led him to do a remake of an already existing dance piece. Having Esmeralda Vasquez’ original piece to constantly bounce off of and relate to was challenging and sometimes even scary, but also comforting and fun. But above all, this work is a dance piece about experiencing dancing.
Based on “Dance To Dance To”, Ludvig was asked to choreograph a piece for Cullberg Ballet at the Nobel Prize Banquet in Stockholm. On the 10th of December 2017 nine dancers from the company performed a modified version of “Dance To Dance To” in Stockholm City Hall, accompanied by symphony orchestra Musica Vitae.
Concept, choreography and direction: Ludvig Daae
Dance and choreography: Viktoria Andersson, Marcus Baldemar and Ulrika Berg
Producer: Sara Bergsmark
Scenography and light design: Daniel Åkerström-Steen
Costumes: Tove Berglund
Composer: William Rickman
With the financial support of Arts Council Norway, Swedish Arts Council and City of Stockholm.
Residency at MDT Stockholm and O Espaço do Tempo, Portugal.
Photo by Joanna Nordahl