© Renata Dąbrowska
A couple of weeks ago I had the opportunity to present my work Achilles II at the International Solo Dance Contest of the VII Gdańsk Dance Festival in Poland. Over five intense days, the contest brought together performers from all over Europe and was a fantastic opportunity to meet other artists and connect with the local dance scene.
As part of the festival, we had the opportunity to receive feedback from the jury, as well as attending master classes and workshops with Sylwia Hefczyńska-Lewandowska and the contact-improv collective of Piotr Skalski, Paweł Konior and Tomasz Fołtyn.
Testigo Documentary collective was also covering the event, reviewing each night of performances. Here are the impressions of on my performance of Achilles II:
The second evening of the Solo Dance Contest was opened with the work of Joan Clevillé entitled “Achilles II”. The ancient hero does not adopt a pose of a warrior here, does not present himself mid-battle, does not triumph after another victorious clash. He is outside the battlefield; this is one of the few moments of solitude that can be devoted to oneself. The hero cowers under the pressure of expectations of the society, the pressure exerted by destiny weighs him down, the life amid unceasing violence at times arouses his anger, his sensitivity makes itself heard. With a naked torso and in brocade trousers, the performer revolves around the theme of the divine power of the hero and the human sensitivity of the man. He crosses the space with long strides and spins in spirals, falls down under the pressure of reality and gets up against it, responds to external stimuli and operates internal impulses. Achilles is anxious, torn, full of emotions. He is not willing, however, to escape from his life situation, he knows this is the right path for him – he does not, however, tread it with ease.
© Renata Dąbrowska