Lessons of Touch
Vision is discriminating, touch is freeing. Lessons of Touch is an inner excursion into the topic of intimacy; an exploration of the boundaries of our personal tolerance. What does it mean to be exposed in front of others while still being intimate towards one’s own body and one’s own senses? What does it mean to cross from the safe zone and to enter the unknown, foreign body? To touch, smell, lick, bite, sting, slap and hit one’s self and the other? Lessons of Touch explores a world of subliminal, archetypical themes of the human body and its contacts with contemporary voyeuristic society, generously and fearlessly observed and solved, from animalistic and pagan images, through Egyptian animal mythology and Oedipal antic myth, to the descent from the cross and the Pieta. “It is not only about contact between bodies and between generations. It speaks about searching, revealing and permeating the mutual mental and physical subliminal experiences which are deeply hidden in each of us… The piece enters into a direct dialogue with its spectator.” (Theater Journal, Prague, CZ, Vladimir Hulec) The performance is divided into three parts: the first part is a solo Me and My Body, the second part, Me and Him, is a love duet between a young man and a 70 year old woman, and, the third part, Me and the Others, is performed with people chosen from the audience, who, equipped with hidden earphones, are led and manipulated by the director.
Experimental space NOD/ROXY (Prague, CZ), premiered October 2015
Tantehorse is a physical theater company based in its founding city of Prague and now, also. in New York. Since its founding in 2006, Tantehorse has researched the urgent questions of contemporary society and transformed them into theatrical productions based on a strong and appealing visual and physical aesthetic. Their dance and theater pieces have achieved exceptional international recognition as “The Best of Contemporary Dance 2012” (Washington Post) and “The Herald Angel Award” (Edinburgh Fringe). Since 2008, they have produced two premieres a year, site-specific performances, workshops and lectures on the topic of European physical theater and an authorial approach to devised works. Tantehorse is led by two internationally acclaimed artists: Mirenka Cechova and Radim Vizvary. Both stage directors, choreographers, performers and scholars, they are known as the leading proponents of physical and mime theater in Europe and as experimenters with cross over projects between opera and mime, dance, spoken theater, performance art and installations. Pulitzer prize winner Sarah Kaufman (Washington Post) wrote about their thought provoking performance S/He is Nancy Joe, “most impressive of all is simply Cechova’s body, which she turns into a battleground of self-identity and societal censure… Masculine and feminine, two dimensions and three, play out on that magical canvas with schizophrenic velocity. There’s a message in that, about the universal beauty of the human form — its nonconforming breadth included.” “They embody a treasury of physically expressive theater arts” .
Photo by: Vojtech Brtincky
This post is part of a series of profiles on performance and performance makers from this year’s book, Contemporary Performance Almanac 2016, an overview of contemporary performance presented during the 2014/2015 season available for touring now. If you would like to be apart of next year’s book, Contemporary Performance Almanac 2017, you can join the project here.