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German Premiere

Performative contemplations of the topic of work are the focus of Dana Michel’s piece “MIKE”. How can we learn to trust each other in this society? In a space wide open for interpretation, we become witnesses to these contemplations.

Dana Michel begins her performance with a meditation on the work environment, transforming daily actions into choreographic experiments. She is in a space where various everyday objects are scattered. She moves these objects from one place to another, playing with them. Yet every action is interrupted, seemingly losing its fluidity, as if her body has become imprisoned by routine repetition.

The Canadian artist from Ottawa favours absurdity over provocation and humour over profundity to deconstruct normative behaviour. And she takes all the time she needs. Michel creates opportunities for a wide variety of modes of being and living, challenging neo-liberal and efficiency-oriented notions. For Michel, “MIKE” is a committed attempt to emphasize the idea that “without trust in myself and others it is impossible to lead a safe life in public that reflects my own inner life”.

Dana Michel’s works interact with the expanded fields of improvisation, sculpture, comedy, hip-hop, cinematography, dub and social commentary to create a centrifuge of experience. Before graduating from the BFA-programme in Contemporary Dance at Concordia University, Michel was a marketing executive, and a competitive runner and football player.

In 2014, she was awarded the newly created ImPulsTanz Award (Austria) in recognition for outstanding artistic accomplishments and highlighted among notable female choreographers by the New York Times. In 2017, Michel was awarded the Silver Lion for Innovation in Dance at the Venice Biennale. In 2018, she became the first ever dance-artist-in-residence at the Centre National des Arts (Canada).

Dana Michel

German Premiere

World premiere: 19 May 2023 at Kunstenfestivaldesarts

Additional information
Co-production: ARSENIC – Centre d’art scénique contemporain (Lausanne, Switzerland), Centre national des Arts (Ottawa, Canada), Festival TransAmériques (Montréal, Canada), Julidans Amsterdam (Netherlands), Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels, Belgium), MDT (Stockholm, Sweden), Montpellier Danse (France), Moving in November (Helsinki, Finland), Wexner Center for the Arts of The Ohio State University in Columbus (United States of America)

Creative residencies: Alcântara (Lisbon, Portugal), ANTI –Contemporary Art Festival (Kuopio, Finland), Centre national des Arts (Ottawa, Canada), Kinosaki International Arts Center and Kyoto Experiment (Japan), Kunstenfestivaldesarts (Brussels, Belgium), Künstler*innenhaus Mousonturm (Frankfurt/Main, Germany), Montpellier Danse (France) creation residency at Agora, cité internationale de la danse, with support from BNP Paribas Foundation, RIMI/IMIR SceneKunst (Stavanger, Norway), Shedhalle (Zürich, Switzerland) with the kind support of Tanzhaus Zürich and the Embassy of Canada to Switzerland, The Chocolate Factory (NYC, United States of America)

The creation of this work is being made possible thanks to the financial support of Canada Council for the Arts, Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec, Ministère des Relations internationals et de la Francophonie and Conseil des Arts de Montréal.