One-act ballets

Whoever you are, wherever you are, once the moment arrives to reflect on things which may hardly be expressed in words. Here, a new language opens to you: the body may be much more expressive then any verb, and a dance may evoke much more discoveries then any text. When dancers of Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) step on the stage, it seems, a new door is opening: to senses, to feelings, to understandings. Three brilliant works which are much more than a dance — here, this night, at Dance Open Program, performed by the dancers of NDT 2.

Signing Off

Premiere in Russia
Choreography: Paul Lightfoot and Sol León
Music: Philip Glass

There is always a moment when time becomes a texture. Touching this texture is what makes one awake to the necessity of a change.
The softness and strength of the end become the veil between what we call the past, and the unknown.
This bridge of time became the inspiration of this poem,
And the present became a memory.

World premiere: 5 June 2003, Lucent Danstheater, The Hague


Premiere in Russia
Choreography: Marco Goecke
Music: Franz Schubert, Alfred Schnittke, Placebo
Everything vibrates in Wir sagen uns Dunkles. Of sensational excitement.
Hands, wrists, shoulders and legs are surrendered to intoxicating fast tremolos
Flashing, organic or just restrained, the way in which Goecke balances movements and energy,
makes the new Wir sagen uns Dunkles a rock solid piece

Marco Goecke's creation for NDT 2 begins with encounters in the studio between the choreographer and the dancers. Their meetings appear unimportant, yet simultaneously they are more important than anything else; young, naughty and evil, playful and punky. “Today, my feelings belong to the dancers, more than ever before”, says Goecke. A blink of the eye, a glance, a seemingly fleeting gesture. Just a moment or a story? What remains is a tear on an eyelash that is fanned away. How do we get closer? A butterfly that remains a second before it flies away.

Schubert and Schnittke meet those of Placebo, The Swan Song and Song To Say Goodbye. Then there are the rattling pants, its sound interfering with the music. Goecke: “The dancers understand me immediately. There is no limit, they want to be challenged”. They move fast, virtuoso, gesticulate in peculiar ways, unconscious yet self-assured, and — whether solo, in a pas de deux or larger group — they communicate in Goecke's language, as if they had never learned another. Darkness Spoken, without words.

World premiere: 4 November, 2017, Zuiderstrandtheater, The Hague


Choreography: Paul Lightfoot and Sol León
Music: Livingston & David (The Mills Brothers), Stan Freberg / Stone / Liebert,
Turner Layton & Clarence Johnstone, Olavi Virta, Arturo Cuartero, Sterck,
Sexton & Turner (Vera Lynn), Keyes, Feaster, McRae & Edwards
Premiere in Russia
The dream of reason produces monsters.
Imagination deserted by reason creates impossible, useless thoughts.
United with reason imagination is the mother of all art
and the source of all its beauty
Francisco Goya

Sol León and Paul Lightfoot created SH-BOOM! in 1994 for the annual Dancers Choreography Workshop, now called Switch. The piece marks the beginning of their successful collaboration and is therefore of great importance for the choreographic duo, not in the least because León herself performed in the piece. The work combines humour with irony and expresses how people from different backgrounds conduct and relate to one another. Inspired by Francisco de Goya’s satirical black & white sketches, SH-BOOM! masterfully intertwines the dark side (irony) and the light side (humour).

World premiere: 5 October 2000, Lucent Danstheater, The Hague

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