“TURN AND HIT! BAM! AGAIN, FASTER, CROSS AND STRIKE!”; DIRECTIONS FROM CHOREOGRAPHER FRANCESCA TRANTER ANIMATE THE PHOTO SHOOT FOR MUSIC IN MOTION. MALAIKA SARCO-THOMAS SPEAKS ABOUT DANCE TOUR 2017 FEATURING STUDENTS FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF DANCE STUDIES, SCHOOL OF PERFORMING ARTS, UNIVERSITY OF MALTA.
Music in Motion is another event within the framework of Modern Music Days (MMD) organised by Teatru Manoel and the Malta Association for Contemporary Music as part of the Valletta 2018 Cultural Programme in the run-up to the European Capital of Culture year. MMD promotes the performance and understanding of 20th century repertoire and contemporary music through interdisciplinary expression with other art forms. In the spirit of MMD’s interdisciplinary approach, Music in Motion connects a live recital of string quartets with contemporary dance.
The artistic brief, to embrace the theme of human conflict through an evening of new choreographic works for Music in Motion, was created in order to set the stage for the upcoming Dance Studies Association (DSA) conference which will be hosted by the University of Malta in Valletta July 5 – 8, 2018, and will investigate the topic ‘Contra: Dance and Conflict’. Drawing hundreds of scholars from the dance world to Malta, the DSA conference will open up conversations around how dance can be a metaphor and method for both illuminating and resolving interpersonal and international conflict, and will offer a platform for dance artists in Malta to showcase their work on an island poised as a crossroads of Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
The four new choreographies for Music in Motion will offer fresh perspectives on modern string quartets by Philip Glass, Alfred Schnittke, John Adams and Norma Beecroft. The music will be performed by Zene Quartet featuring violinists Marcelline Agius and Klara Nazaj, violist Nadia Debono and cellist Akos Kertesz.
Four local and international choreographers have been chosen to work with a cast of seven students of the Bachelor of Dance Studies course at the University of Malta’s School of Performing Arts. Well-known Maltese dance artist Francesca Tranter will create a new piece, working with a selection of movements from John Adams’ Book of Alleged Dances for string quartet and recorded prepared piano. French choreographer Niels Plotard, known for his lighting, choreography and set design with ŻfinMalta Dance Ensemble, and as recent founder of the local Amber Spark arts organisation, will choreograph a group work on the dancers to the minimalist music of Philip Glass in his String Quartet No. 3, Mishima. Danish actress and director Marie Keiser-Nielsen, also a recent graduate of the Bachelor of Dance Studies course, will create a new trio to the music of experimental Canadian composer Norma Beecroft’s Amplified String Quartet with Tape. And Vancouver-based Swedish dance artist Emmalena Fredriksson, known for socially critical work dealing with issues of migration and language, will create a group piece to the complex tonalities and rhythms of Alfred Schnittke’s String Quartet No. 3.
Music in Motion is part of MMD which seeks to foster interdisciplinary expression by connecting composers and musicians with other artists. In February 2017, MMD presented the concert entitled Rhythms of Vision at Teatru Manoel where each piece in the programme was assigned to a video artist, portraying a visual backdrop to live performance of the music. MMD often collaborates with festivals on co-productions which includes the music installation Bandli for the Malta International Arts Festival. In November 2017 MMD will collaborate with ŻiguŻajg International Arts Festival for Children and Young People on a new production of Parade; a 20th century masterpiece premiered in Paris in 1917 featuring the music of Erik Satie scored to a one-act scenario by Jean Cocteau with costumes and sets designed by Pablo Picasso.
MUSIC IN MOTION
February 14th - 2018