For much of 2011 I was dramaturg to Koen Augustijnen on his brand new les ballets c de la b show 'Au-dela'.

 

The show premiered in Portugal in February 2012 before going on to play across Europe throughout the year.

 

Koen and I wrote a chapter together for a new book called 'International Dramaturgies: A fresh perspective' - to be published by Methuen in 2013. It is a personal account of our working processes.

 

You can also see a brief blog I wrote about our process on www.lesballetscdela.be

 

Au-dela by Koen Augustijnen

 

For his new piece Au-delà Koen Augustijnen turns his attention to an imagining of the after-life.

 

5 dancers, all around their 40’s, their bodies loaded with a past, explore the possibilities, expectations and promises of a life after life in a surreal scenography.

 

Arriving in this in-between space they confront themselves, their pasts, their actions and each other. They struggle with ideas of who they were, who they meant to be, what they did and didn’t do, in the hope that by doing this, and by accepting life as it was and is, they might reach a moment of insight or heightened awareness.

In search of transformation, they try to shake off the burdens of existence in favour of balance and harmony. In this sense Au-delà is as much an exploration of life before death as life after it.

 

In a move away from his recent work with baroque music, perhaps surprisingly, Koen Augustijnen accompanies his gaze towards ‘life after life’ with jazz and takes his inspiration from  the music by Keith Jarrett. The selected music touches a transcendental and metaphysical level. It travels easily from being small and tender to being huge and powerful, from offering consolation to issuing challenges.

 

Augustijnen has assembled a cast of mature dancers along with dramaturg Lou Cope and designer Wim Van de Cappelle to embark on a journey towards Au-delà.