Kaddish 01 is a dance performance inspired by three recent environmental disasters, all of them directly tied to climate change: melting Icelandic glaciers, 2021’s flooding of Germany, and the 2020 bushfires in Australia. Each scene reads like a vanitas tableau: ecological themes intermingling with western arts’ meditations on the collapse of civilization, all leading us to confront the dubious and elusive value of human accomplishment.

The first two episodes of this creation (the melting of glaciers in Iceland, and the floods in Germany) are directly inspired by the tradition of landscape painting in German Romanticism. In direct correlation with the continually changing relationship between humans and their environment, this art movement invites the viewer to contemplate, meditate upon, and envision nature: threatening or domesticated, preserved or in danger. The third scene of Kaddish 01 (the Australian bushfires) moves away from the simple observation of this event in order to offer the viewer an ambiguous hope for redemption in the present. The choreographic phrases emerge through contemplation of these concerns, crystallized and embodied in motion, before ultimately undergoing a symbolic condensation into the final postures adopted by the three dancers.

Leaving aside the purpose of denouncing these highly publicized ecological disasters, my concern centers on space as a symbolic vector for organizing visual information. Dance moves, signs, facial expressions, all become a means of revealing the philosophical potential of dance. The minimalistic setting is composed of an installation made out of a single red wool thread woven throughout the gallery, binding together room, dancers, and viewers. The red wool thread (spun and died in my native village in Romania) is alternately a symbol of folly, of belonging to a community, or of hope.

The original music by Todd Lent follows, as a memento mori, the lifecycle of a person from the period before they're born, when their existence is still a hypothetical cloud of possibilities, until their inevitable demise. This creation benefited from an artist residency at the Le Complexe Theatre in Lyon, France. - Alina Noir

Kaddish 01
Concept: Alina Noir
Perfromance created and interpreted by Rosalie Mayet, Joana Millet & Alina Noir
Music: Todd Lent
Image: Arthur Gauthier, Tony Noël
Scenography: Alina Noir
30 July 2021, Théâtre Le Complexe, Lyon