Dance: A leap of faith

Groups of dancers improvise to music in the series Blind Dance.

Gil Shohat at the piano, with the choreographers. (photo credit: EYAL LANDSMAN)
Gil Shohat at the piano, with the choreographers.
(photo credit: EYAL LANDSMAN)
It takes a lot of courage to go on a blind date. One must allay expectations, attempt to dispel preconceived notions and go with the flow. Although the practice is rapidly fading from the world, due largely to social media, there is something truly romantic about the leap of faith required in this type of journey into the unknown.
Later this month, four choreographers will try their hand at blind dating, only it isn’t a partner they’re after but a performance. In the four-day series Blind Dance, hosted by Warehouse 2 in Jaffa, artists Ronit Ziv, Sahar Azimi, Dafi Eltabeb and Nimrod Fried will each have a turn to collaborate in real time with renowned composer and conductor Gil Shohat and a piano. The meeting will represent the first interaction that each of the choreographers has had with Shohat, having had no prior rehearsals or discussions about the content of the performance. Each choreographer will arrive with a group of dancers, ready to jump into action.
Moments before the curtain is raised, Shohat will reveal to the artists which piece of music he has chosen to play. The choreographers will then quickly pass on instructions to the dancers, and the show will begin. This format is based largely on the improvisational capabilities of the dancers, as the choreographers will not continue their guidance once the show begins.
The dance artists chosen to take part in this project each has a unique perspective and choreographic style. Fried, Azimi, Eltabeb and Ziv have all been active members of the local dance community for many years. Shohat, 42, is an international conductor and composer. His works have been seen on stages around the world. He serves as a musical adviser for a long list of local festivals and is a Knight in the French Order of Arts and Letters.
For Shohat, Blind Dance is the newest expression of his interest in and appreciation of the dance form. Over the past several years, he has collaborated with many dance artists, most notably Rina Schenfeld and Idan Sharabi, bringing classical music into the dance spotlight. Blind Dance will no doubt challenge Shohat’s ability to act on his feet, as the format is based on the mutual reactions of all participants. This platform was developed by the Choreographers’ Association as a means to question, challenge and enjoy the age-old connection between music and dance. These meetings are one-time only events and promise to deliver the unexpected.
Blind Dance will take place at Warehouse 2 in Jaffa on August 26, 27, 28 and 29. For more information, visit www.