choreography Jakub Lewandowski
music Michał Lis
performing Dominika Wiak
“Can you experience happiness in loneliness?” asks the Polish choreographer Jakub Lewandowski in the first part of a loose triptych Melancholy. He drew inspiration from the work of the American painter Edward Hopper, whose multicoloured realistic works with deserted scenery and figures immersed in their own worlds, breath an air of unforeseen loneliness. What were the real women, portrayed in Hopper's paintings and brought to life by the production, actually like? What was dragging them down to the ground, what life struggles did they experience? How many themes can a handbag include… A charming solo of Dominika Wiak. The elusive nostalgia of the 1950s. Animated images.
Jakub Lewandowski, dancer, lecturer and choreographer, was granted the Mathilde Monnier National de Montpellier scholarship in France and is also a laureate of the Marshal of Silesia Voivodeship Award for 2010. He graduated with a degree in art education at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań and dance education at the University of Humanities and Economics in Lodz. He worked as a soloist in the ballet company of Teatr Rozrywki, and currently works as an independent artist for various Polish troupes.
He has created choreography for dozens of productions, regularly cooperating with renowned authors such as Radoslaw Rychcik, Nikolaj Koljada, Robert Talarczyk and Magdalena Piekorz. He was nominated for the prestigious art award Złota Maska, and won it in 2011 for his choreography in the production Hotel Nowy Świat at Teatr Polski in Bielsko-Biała.
Dominika Wiak, whoalso studied at this school, used to be a successful national team member in Acrobatic Rock and Roll in Poland. During her studies, she created several awarded productions such as inner place (audience award at the Solo/Duo International Dance Festival in Budapest) and Race (awarded at the 3…2…1…Dance! Krakow). She returns to the Flora Theatre Festival after two years, having performed in Piotr Stanek's production Emergency Plan in 2016.
The first part of Lewandowski triptych Melancholy – a solo of Dominika Wiak won the Audience Award at the 2018 Solo/Duo International Dance Festival in Budapest as well as the 3…2…1…Dance! Krakow festival award.
Choreography, visuals Martin Talaga
supervision Kara Rooney
light design Karlos Šimek
stage design Kateřina Soukupová
costumes Kateřina Jirmanová Soukupová
production Dominika Skálová
photography Petr Kurečka, Michal Hančovský
performing Radim Klásek, Anton Eliaš, Marek Menšík
As the human body is at the heart of SOMA, our dictionary of the physical movement within the performance is defined by its abilities and inabilities. We ask ourselves what the human body is capable of expressing and what are its limitations. We use parts of a mannequin in order to shed light on the imperfections of the body contrasting with the seemingly perfect and proportionate pieces of plastic. We conclude that in spite of its flawlessness, the mannequin remains cold, breathless and soulless. The mannequin is meant to function as a memento to the mankind and thereby, it is to reflect upon the current trend of worshiping perfection and outer beauty while forgetting about the real values and inner beauty. We have become colder, we care less and without realising it, we have transformed to be more robot-like than ever before. We are slowly, but surely losing what makes us human.
Once again, he (Martin Talaga) tries not to please, or in any way formally or purposefully, gratify the audience. Because of this his work feels sincere and pure… Refreshing, simple movement vocabulary, functional lighting, the space, the props, and the concept of the entire choreography – raw and new. All this leads us to an unexpected destination “a movement installation“. Jan Kodet, choreographer
The main strength of the performance is in the associative play with the viewer, in the hints, fleeting gestures and abstractions that stimulate the imagination… LUDVÍK PÍZA, nadivadlo.blogspot.cz, 12 June 2017
Martin Talaga is a Prague-based artist. He works as a dancer, choreographer and performance artist mainly in the field of physical theatre and contemporary dance. Besides contemporary dance, he focuses on experimental and visual performances as well as traditional folk dances. Over the course of his studies and professional career he has had the chance to collaborate with various choreographers, theatre directors and companies, including LATERNA MAGIKA-National Theatre (CZ), VerTeDance (CZ), Spitfire Company (CZ), Radim Vizváry (CZ), Csaba Molnár (HU), Matthew Rogers (US), Alexandra Karabelas (GE), Stefan Dreher (GE), Mia Lawrence (GE, BE), SAJU HARI (UK), Jaro Viňarský (SK), Peter Šavel (BE/SK), Vera Ondrašíková (CZ) and others.