À bras-le-corps
Choreography: Dimitri Chamblas and Boris Charmatz

The beginning...
We wanted to perform far from the normal context of a performance, with the rows of seats and the stage, and also far from our student days. We wanted to install in a closed space a large square of chairs strictly delimiting our movement, abolishing by the same gesture all distance between the audience and ourselves, abolishing any possibility of an escape by one or the other. Everything had to lend itself to our approach: a choreography composed from a sensation of fatigue, a mass crawling with difficulty to a cruel death, restarting again without cease, provisional. Heat and falling mingled, to make death in the same way one plays on words: from the tip of the lips.

... continué
But, with time, À bras-le-corps has gotten rid of all its poetical and theoretical arsenal; it remains, at the very most, a few notes of intentions, archived press clippings and photographs – and both of us have frontally attacked a lot of other work – "exploits" rather than "labors". After the dust has settled, our energy appears marked by the desire for power and mass, but also by a lively and joyful irony, the choreography giving precedence to a simple and explosive experience.
À bras-le-corps, as a first work, held staggering and renewed promise for us. The strict framework adapts itself to our evolution/maturation, and the piece increasingly resembles the concept of clearing the fields: bringing to it our experiences as performers and as men, taking from it the emotive fluxes that the structure of the duet welcomes like the spillway of a dam. By its nature, the project has been able to adapt to every environment, from a Dominican convent to a village assembly hall, from a gymnasium to a prestigious or banal proscenium – and to strike against every surface: wood floors, rough concrete, slabs of stone, black or white linoleum, and even simple countryside earth. The past of this continuing beginning has for us something of an epic....

Running time: 40 min

With:

Dimitri Chamblas, Boris Charmatz

Light: Renaud Lapperousaz
Light technician: Madjid Hakimi (or Yves Godin)
Music: Paganini Caprici n°1, 10 and 16; Itzhak Perlman, violin; Emi Classics CDC 7 471 71 2

Production: Association edna, Musée de la danse/ / Centre chorégraphique national de Rennes et de Bretagne – Direction: Boris Charmatz. Association supported by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication (Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles / Bretagne), the city of Rennes, the regional Council of Brittany and the General Council of Ille-et-Vilaine.
The Institut français contributes regularly to the international touring of the Musée de la danse.
Coproduction: Villa Gillet/Lyon

À bras-le-corps premiered in January the 13th 1993 at La Villa Gillet, Lyon

Cover picture: © Raynaud de Lage / À bras-le-corps, Salle Panopée, 17e festival Artdanthé, Vanves, 2015

  • À bras-le-corps - Salle Panopée, 17e festival Artdanthé, Vanves, 2015
  • À bras-le-corps - Festival de la nouvelle danse, Uzès, 1996
  • À bras-le-corps - Centre Pompidou, 1995

  • A bras-le-corps
    © Musée de la danse

  • On tour:

    Du 4 au 5 avril – Le Dôme Théâtre in Albertville (France)
    Du 19 au 21 décembre 2017 – La Lucarne - Scènes du Golf in Arradon (France)

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