At Spring Forward in Elefsina (28 April – 1 May 2022) for the first time, we invited a group of emerging dance presenters to be guided through the festival by four Aerowaves Partners (Catja Loepfe, Roberto Casarotto, Markéta Perroud and Edvin Liverić) led by Betsy Gregory. After the festival, the participants – Nicolas Vamvouklis (GR), Eva Posedel (SI), Pétur Ármannsson (IS), Chiara Bersani (IT), Tendai Malvine Makurumbandi (NO), Fatima Ndoye (FR), Guillaume Guilherme (CH), Maria Manoukian (GR), Jenna Jalonen (HU), Thjerza Balaj (DK) and Aleksandra Lytvyn (UKR) – were invited them to propose a curatorial project to present Aerowaves artists.
Chiara Bersani (IT), Fatima Ndoye (FR) and Guillaume Guilherme (CH) have been awarded 10.000€ each to realise the proposal they presented.
Fatima Ndoye has devised a double exchange programme: one between Aerowaves artists from the African diaspora and African artists, and a second one involving Aerowaves Startup presenters. Her project will be developed within the framework of Génération A – The Lab, an encounter which will take place in the city of Saint-Louis (Senegal) around the festival Duo Solo Danse.
Guillaume Guilherme has designed a curatorial project entitled ‘No Honeymoon’ around the performance ‘Cold Hawaii’, which will involve a poet and local performers. Chiara Bersani has proposed ‘MUSIC NON STOP’, a five-day experience at Spazio Kor in Asti during which the Aerowaves Artists Cassiel Gaube and Courtney May Robertson will develop strategies for increasing accessibility and interpretation of their works with the local community and the association Al Di Qua Artists – Alternative Disability Quality Artists.
Génération A – The Lab, an exchange project by Fatima Ndoye
Fatima Ndoye co-directs the artistic programme of the festival Génération A in Paris with Alioune Diagne. This event takes place at the Théâtre Paris-Villette and aims to present a young generation of choreographers now active in Africa, who are very often unknown in Europe. Together with the Théâtre Paris-Villette, they have envisioned Génération A – The Lab, an encounter that will take place in June 2023 in the city of Saint-Louis (Senegal) around the festival Duo Solo Danse, which aims to create new synergies among artists and programmers.
The proposal that Ndoye has devised will be developed within this framework and through two programmes, one for artists and one for programmers. In a social and political global context of closed borders, migration and war, Ndoye wants to emphasise dance as a “space of possibility.”
The Génération A – The Lab: artists’ programme will enable a collaboration amongst young makers from the African diaspora active in Europe and African makers. This collaboration will take place in Senegal, creating a unique opportunity for Europe-based artists to get to know the social and cultural context in which the work of African artists is being developed. This initiative will enable developmental opportunities that will extend beyond its time and geographical location.
How will this programme work? Three Aerowaves artists coming from the African diaspora and living/working in Europe will be invited to Génération A – The Lab in Saint-Louis. Ten days before the start of the Duo Solo Danse festival, each of them will accompany an African choreographer’s work. At the festival Duo Solo Danse in Saint-Louis, in June 2023 the three Aerowaves choreographers will present their work and at the festival Génération A in Paris in June 2024 the projects by the three African choreographers will be programmed at the Théâtre Paris-Villette.
The Génération A – The Lab: programmers’ programme involves up to three participants of Aerowaves Startup Forum from different European countries, who will spend a week in Saint-Louis to attend the festival Duo Solo Danse. Together they will share practices with artists from different countries from Africa and the African diaspora active in Europe, meet cultural actors and initiatives from Saint-Louis and other regions of Senegal, and imagine spaces of collaboration between Africa and Europe and connections within the 2024 edition of “Génération A”.
These two initiatives aim to connect both artists and programmers between the African and European continents. Both Aerowaves and Génération A have circulation at the heart of their missions. Génération A- The Lab will expand this mission by opening up opportunities that boost exchange and artistic development opportunities beyond Europe.
Swiss-Senegalese dancer, choreographer and actress Fatima Ndoye lives in Paris. Trained at the Cours Florent and at the Studio Harmonic, she has performed under the direction of Walter Manfré, Pauline Bureau, Camille Chamoux, Salomé Lelouch, amongst others, and dances with the companies Ph7, Karine Saporta, Eric Senen.
In 2009, she founded the company Le Temps des choses with which she presented several projects such as the solo ‘Quand j'étais blanche’ she performed in France, Senegal and Tchad. Since 2017, she shares the artistic direction of the festival "Génération A", a festival dedicated to emerging contemporary choreographers in Africa which takes place at the Paris Villette theatre, in Paris. In 2019, she co-created ‘Le Sel de nos avenirs’ with choreographer Hardo Ka, a piece which brings together 10 young Senegalese dancers and will tour from June 2022 in Senegal.
NO HONEYMOON, a curatorial project by Guillaume Guilherme
“Cold Hawaii is no honeymoon spot.” (Karina Buckley, Springback Writer)
Taking Sigrid Stigsdatter Mathiassen’s ‘Cold Hawaii’, Guillaume Guilherme proposes an evening around this solo which impressed him for the performer’s powerful, solitary presence and rich narrative about heartbreak. After an exchange with the artist, Guilherme has dived deeply into ‘Cold Hawaii’ and its “omg dramaturgy”, as Stigsdatter calls it. Since the work is structured as an ‘esoteric short story’ (30 minutes long), Guilherme will commission a new, recorded text from the poet Malika Fankha. Through poetry, the curator intends to extend the performance by changing the medium and taking the audience to a space in between live performance and the voice of an absent person. The ‘No Honeymoon’ evening will end with the improvisation of a local dancer in front of the word “HEARTBREAK” on the playlist of the creation process of ‘Cold Hawaii’. Facial tissues will be gently distributed at the exit.
The tour of Stigsdatter’s piece within Guilherme’s curatorial project is designed to be as green as possible, hence the artist will travel by train and the performing dates in Switzerland will be programmed over 9 days in a row at different venues and cities of the country. As well as the artist is invited to give a workshop for the local scene about the so-called “omg dramaturgy”
After his dance career, Guillaume Guilherme created Rhodia, a project of performances under cover. He worked for two years at the Swiss Archive of the Performing Arts and since 2016 as a cultural mediator at Tanzhaus Zürich. He was member, then co-president, of the jury of the Swiss Performing Arts Awards for six years. In 2020 he became president of PREMIO, the national incentive prize for the performing arts in Switzerland. He co-curated the international youth festival Blickfelder 2022. He is currently studying cultural management and is a happy networker.
MUSIC NON STOP, a project on identity, intersectionality and accessibility by Chiara Bersani
Inspired by Kraftwerk’s song ‘Music Non Stop’ (1986), Chiara Bersani wonders if the rage, the anger, and the vigour of heavy metal music or house dance and clubbing (as a ritual contemporary collective act) can revolutionise the bodies that populate the contemporary European dance scene today? And, is it possible to make a party accessible to everybody?
The main objective of the MUSIC NON STOP project is to create a path of accessibility and interpretation of the chosen works, in agreement with the artists, seeking common approaches. Both works display dance for the sake of dance, a political stance stemming from the body and not the mind.
MUSIC NON STOP consists of a 5-day experience which includes workshops with the local audience at at Spazio Kor –the venue Chiara co-directs with Giulia Traversi– led by Cassiel Gaube and Courtney May Robertson, a meeting with the local clubbing community and Al di qua Artists and a double bill of ‘Soirée d’Études’ and ‘the pleasure of stepping off a horse when it is moving at full speed’ followed by a party co-curated by Al.Di.Qua.Artists, Aerowaves Artists and the curators of Spazio Kor.
As well as being the current co-director with Giulia Traversi of Spazio Kor (an old church transformed into a performing arts venue), Bersani is a member of Al Di Qua Artists – Alternative Disability Quality Artists, the first European professional association, born in Italy, created, managed and committed to people with disabilities working in the arts. One of the missions of the association is the accessibility for audiences with different kinds of disabilities and cultural backgrounds, taking into account the complexity of opening a dialogue with audiences who have been marginalised and excluded from participating in the arts.
Chiara Bersani is an internationally active choreographer, performer and activist with disabilities. Her work moves between contemporary dance and performing arts. Since 2021, together with Giulia Traversi, Chiara co-directs Spazio Kor, a deconsecrated church in Northern Italy (Asti - Piedmont), dedicated to contemporary arts. There, Chiara and Giulia started an experimental project to make contemporary dance accessible in an economically and sustainable way.