Reaching out

The Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company is opening its doors to some big names.

By ORI J. LENKINSKI
March 21, 2010 06:52
3 minute read.
Reaching out

kibbutz dance co.88. (photo credit: )

 
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The Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (KCDC) has hosted some of the greatest names in contemporary dance. Among the choreographers who have contributed to KCDC’s rich repertory are Mats Ek of Cullberg Ballet in Sweden and Jiri Kylian of Netherlands Dance Theater. There was a time when KCDC was the closest thing Israel had to a repertory dance company. However, for the past twenty years, KCDC has produced dance pieces choreographed by in-house artists only.

Since 1996, almost all of the pieces performed by the large ensemble have been the work of one man, Rami Beer. Since taking on the role of artistic director, Beer has created dozens of evening-length pieces and has become a significant voice in the Israeli dance community. KCDC tours internationally and has gained strength and recognition steadily during Beer’s reign.

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Between the main company and the second troupe, over thirty dancers reside and work in KCDC’s facility on Kibbutz Gaaton.

This year, the artistic administration of KCDC has decided to shake things up and go back to the company’s old ways. They invited two Amsterdam-based choreographers to create an evening for the ensemble, resulting in Black/White, which premiers tonight at The Suzanne Dellal Center. The evening will be performed only six times in theaters around Israel and promises to be a break from the ordinary.

Black/White is comprised of two pieces: Until.With/Out.Enough, by Israeli choreographer Itzik Galili, and Pulse, by Krisztina De Chatel. While neither of these pieces is new, the collaboration between these two artists and KCDC is.

ITZIK GALILI began his career in Israel, dancing for Bat Dor Dance Company and Batsheva Dance Company. In 1991, after winning The Shades of Dance Festival at The Suzanne Dellal Center, Galili packed his bags and moved to The Netherlands where he quickly founded his own project-based company. In the past twenty years he has created over 50 original works and shows no signs of tiring. His work is at times tender, at times aggressive and always flawlessly aesthetic.

In 1997, Galili made Until.With/Out.Enough, using his signature musicality and mastery of gestures to weave Henryk Gorecki’s melodies with movement. The piece received immediate acclaim and left the words “stirring” and “haunting” in its wake.

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De Chatel is Hungarian-born but has been a resident of Amsterdam for more than three decades. She is a pioneer choreographer and supporter of young talent. She created Pulse in 2007 in Amsterdam for Dance Company Krisztina De Chatel, which closed its doors in 2008 after thirty years of success. Pulse is set to fellow Hungarian Gyorgy Ligeti’s piano etudes. De Chatel was quoted as saying, “His music has a mechanical feel to it, and at the same time I hear the throbbing Hungarian heart of the composer and see the dazzling fingers of the pianist before me as I listen.”

Galili and De Chatel are far from strangers. In fact, they are artistic partners. Both enjoyed fruitful and long careers with their own companies. Rumors of their plan to come together began to flood the gossip channels in dance studios and theaters several years ago. It was clear that these two artists could do great things together if given the chance. So far, they have lived up to the stories. In 2009, Galili and De Chatel left the comfort of their studios and joined forces. The child of this union is Dansgroep Amsterdam, a repertory company dedicated to presenting works by choreographers, young and old, known and unknown.

KCDC’s skilled dancers, the company’s flare for high production value, and the work of two motivated and gifted choreographers are surely a winning combination.

Black/White will run March 21, 22 at The Suzanne Dellal Center, (03) 510-5656, March 24 at Rappaport Hall in Haifa, (09) 955-1042, April 7 at The Karmiel Cultural Center, (04) 988-1111, April 8 at the Herzliya Performing Arts Center (09) 972-9999, and April 22 at The Jerusalem Theater, (02) 623-7000.

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