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Claudio Stellato

L'Autre

Le Polaris, Corbas, Théâtre de L'ATRIUM, Tassin la Demi-Lune

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625x350 ClaudioStellatto

A man and some objects. What happens between them? Here, Stellato draws on his experiences in circus, street theatre and contemporary dance – and adds a sprinkling of very personal magic that tips the show into the realm of illusion. L'Autre is a whimsical curiosity made of dance and “furniture” circus, along the lines of Erik Satie’s furniture dance.

 

What gave you the idea for this piece?
It all began with research on the body in 2008. At first, I wasn’t thinking of creating a dance piece; I was just looking for L’Autre, a character who thinks and moves in a singular manner. I wanted to find a workshop that would allow us all to find that Other. And I knew it would mean working with objects. That research went on for about a year and a half.

What was the !rst object you chose?
The red carpet. I wanted to see a carpet unroll all by itself. Without any visible manipulation. That was the image I had in mind.

And that’s when the idea came to you to use magic?
No, that idea came earlier. For a while now, I’ve been thinking that it would be nice for a kitsch technique like magic to become a contemporary-theatre tool. I thought magic would become interesting if it served a story. But it wasn’t easy because I couldn’t find a magician for the theatre. They were too expensive or not interested. So Martin Firket and I solved it ourselves with a simple rule: never more than 10 euros. Anything we used should cost no more than that, which led to some very personal resolutions that don’t fit the rules of the world of magic.

You have an atypical background: you started in jazz and street theatre, then you trained for the circus, then back to the theatre and, finally contemporary dance. What circus arts did you study?
At first I was juggling with rings; I was manipulating objects. But I soon switched to balancing on objects: on ladders, on slack wire, which was my speciality. You have to keep your balance on an un-stretched rope.

What does that “speciality” say about you?
It’s true that there is always a psychological explanation for an artist’s choice of discipline in the circus. It’s possible that my choice of the slack wire reflects the fact that I’m not an aerial kind of guy; I’m not an acrobat, I can’t do trapeze; my feet have to be in contact with something

L'Autre is a silent piece. That’s strange for someone like you, coming from jazz.
I wanted silence because I felt that every time you add music to something, it automatically influences your perception of what you are watching. If you look at a tree while listening to heavy metal or Beethoven, well, it’s not the same tree. By doing L'Autre without music, it makes the piece even more mysterious because there isn’t any sound to cover the “tricks” of magic. So the spectator is alone with the show, he alone gives meaning to what he sees.

The objects and the furniture in the piece: it was you and Martin Firket who made them. Where did they come from?
Each one has a history. For example, the big piece of furniture was something I found in Belgium at the Salvation Army. It’s a huge armoire and I got it for just one euro. I brought it back to the dance studio and I started working on it. I began to realise its potential and I rebuilt it for the dance piece. As for the smaller piece of furniture, it has its own story. I was doing an artistic residency somewhere and I did an hour of improvisation every day. Then, one day, I came upon a closed space; no way to get inside. So I went back to my bedroom and threw myself into an hour of improvisation. I started banging around and I wound up in the lower part of the armoire. That’s what I rebuilt for L'Autre.

In L'Autre and already in laCosa – a piece of research you did during your residency in Lyon, which you are also showing at the Biennale – you rebuild objects.
Yes, I have a carnal relationship with objects; I like DIY and the connection you can have with objects. During my residency, I worked with natural, raw materials, like logs, firewood, branches and axes. I started with the idea of an elegant man who behaved like a lumberjack.

And what did you learn from your experience in street theatre?
I learned to perfect the art of improvisation. You have to learn to work with incidents, drunks, a bird flying through – anything to make people laugh. Everything has to be useful. Especially since I depended on the generosity of passersby; I hadn’t been invited to perform at street theatre festivals. I had to draw my circle, do a show and try to make a little money. The other thing is interacting with the audience. Then, when you go from the street to the theatre, you’re more relaxed. Anything can happen, but you know it’ll be alright because you’ve learned to transform any incident into an incredible scene.

claudio-stellato

"I’ve been thinking that it would be nice for a kitsch technique like magic to become a contemporary-theatre tool."

Claudio Stellato

Le Polaris, Corbas

Dates et horaires

  • Tue 16 Sep20:30
  • Durée : 50 min environ

Tarifs

  • Plein tarif 16€
  • Tarif réduit 13€

Abonnement

  • CatégorieC

Théâtre de L'ATRIUM, Tassin la Demi-Lune

Dates et horaires

  • Sat 27 Sep17:30
  • Durée : 50 min environ

Tarifs

  • Plein tarif 16€
  • Tarif réduit 13€

Abonnement

  • CatégorieC

Piece for 1 dancer — 2011 — Run time 50 min

Direction artistique : Claudio Stellato

Concept, chorégraphie et mise en scène : Claudio Stellato — Collaboration artistique : Martin Firket — Assistante : Chiara Ribera d’Alcalà — Interprétation, scénographie, costumes, technique son et lumières : Martin Firket et Claudio Stellato

Avec le soutien de : Wallonie - Bruxelles Théâtre / Danse — Accueil : Théâtre de l’ATRIUM — Tassin la Demi-Lune, le Polaris - Corbas, Biennale de la danse

Photo © Martin Firket - Portrait © Julian Bright Martin Firket