Anthology What is contemporary dance?
After having been the curator of two editions of KLAPSTUK, Alain Platel invited Jérôme Bel in 2003 to put together the festival. The French choreographer lived up to his reputation by making radical choices: KLAPSTUK # 11 was a festival that more than ever before opened up the horizons of contemporary dance to other disciplines, that lauched a lot of conceptual questions and that stressed the creative role of the audience.
In 2004, exactly one year after KLAPSTUK # 11, Jérôme Bel reunited all the players of the field (artists, spectators, critics and curators) for a critical look back and to formulate some relevant questions on the contemporary context.
With Jérôme Bel, Alain Platel, Prue Lang, Pieter T'Jonck, Elke Van Campenhout, Jeroen Peeters and Guy Gypens.
Sarma documented the talks. We are currently redigitalizing them to make them available again on this site.
On the occasion of this event, Sarma published a collection of texts around some related issues, which all seem to hinge upon matters of definition: What is contemporary dance? What does 'conceptual' dance mean? These questions provoked debates on the very status of the art form and critical reflections thereupon, and brought forth a series of fairly loaded neologisms and expressions, such as 'dans dolle pret', 'anti-dans' or 'non-danse'.
After Klapstuk 1999, curated by choreographer Alain Platel, critic Pieter T'Jonck disapproved of festival's critical potentialities, speaking about 'watching monkeys in the zoo', and scored a reaction by dance presenter and dramaturge Guy Cools. Similar discussions took place when critic Elke Van Campenhout coined the term 'dans dolle pret' (dance great fun) in the newspaper De Standaard (Nov. 2003), and when critic Jeroen Peeters published a plea for stillness in De Morgen (Jan. 2004) and continued this approach in a series of interviews on conceptualism in dance (with Alice Chauchat, Carine Meulders and Petra Roggel). It was again Guy Cools who responded, stating that the conceptual preferences of critics harm the diversity in the Belgian dance field.
When Emio Greco and Pieter C. Scholten made a statement about the poor quality of dance criticism in the Netherlands in October 2002, several debates were to follow. They organised a series of salons Dance & Discourse, which brought up issues that were taken up in the magazine TM. After the publication of an essay by Jeroen Peeters on the relationship between a certain tradition of dance criticism and the use of notions such as 'modern' or 'contemporary' dance ('Fantomen van de Nederlandse danskritiek', Jan. 2003), the polemic continued in written form in TM. When critic Myriam van der Linden launched the term 'anti-dans' in her review of the festival Springdance (April 2003), the notion was picked up quickly by her colleagues and thus added third thread to the ongoing discussion in Holland.
In France, Le Monde critic Dominique Frétard denounced the end of 'non-danse' and the return to 'beautiful dance' in a widely discussed article (May 2003). Reactions were published by Jean-Marc Adolphe, Gérard Mayen and Jeroen Peeters.
The anthology also includes reviews and interviews published on the occasion of Klapstuk #11, on Jérôme Bel's work, and essays by Rudi Laermans, Carine Meulders and Christophe Wavelet on the question 'What is contemporary dance?'
Note that not all of the above-mentioned texts could be made available again.
This text collection was realized by Raf Vervecken and Jeroen Peeters, with financial support of Klapstuk.
The text collection has 3 subcollections:
Conceptual dance in Belgium and France
Dance & Discourse
*Fantomen van de Nederlandse danskritiek
|Jeroen Peeters||Is er dans na de apocalyps?||Financieel-Economische Tijd||1999|
|Ingrid Van Frankenhuyzen||Alles duurt te lang op Springdance||NRC Handelsblad||2003|
|Gabriel Smeets||Dance and discourse||TM||2003|
|Fransien van der Putt||Dance criticism on the move!||www.emiogrecopc.nl||2003|
|Ingrid van Schijndel||Dans & Muziek||TM||2003|
|Elke Van Campenhout||Dans Dolle Pret||De Standaard||2003|
|Elke Van Campenhout||Dans dolle pret||Courant||2004|
|Isabella Steenbergen||Dans, metadans, metametadans||TM||2004|
|Fransien van der Putt||Dansdiscours moddert voort||TM||2003|
|Gabriel Smeets||De Nederlandse Dansdagen||TM||2002|
|Isabella Steenbergen||De dansende mens||TM||2003|
|Jeroen Peeters||De danspassen van een nieuwe generatie||De Morgen||2004|
|Mirjam van der Linden||De tombola van Springdance 2003||TM||2003|
|Alain Buffard, Xavier Le Roy||Dialogue sur et pour Jérôme Bel||Mouvement||1999|
|Pieter C Scholten||Disposition sur la critique de danse||www.emiogrecopc.nl||2002|
|Jean-Marc Adolphe||Déplacement d’un corps critique||Mouvement||2003|
|Jeroen Peeters||Een huiselijke omgang met de wereld||De Morgen||2003|
|Jeroen Peeters||Een onmogelijke pas de deux||Boekman||2003|
|Guy Cools, Jeroen Peeters||Een pleidooi voor (terug) meer beweging in het kritisch kijken naar en denken over dans||Sarma||2004|
|Jeroen Peeters||Een pleidooi voor stilstand||De Morgen||2004|