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Fabbrica europa

Fabbrica Europa
3 > 24 May 2008

XV edition
Stazione Leopolda and other spaces

For the programme go to the Calendar !

In a context of international exchange, Fabbrica Europa favours the circulation of ideas and works, convinced that intercultural dialogue is at the basis of the understanding and evaluation of differences in the creative sphere as well.
The dimension of the laboratory and of encounters among people and ideas from remote geographic and linguistic territories, in conflict or in any case different, has always been one of Fabbrica Europa's principles. The XV Edition will enlarge, modulate and make this dimension part of the programme, calling artists and operators to share the processes of creation, production and transmission of diversified knowledge. Relations with the cultures beyond Europe (from the Mediterranean to Africa), which are being constantly absorbed into the European social and cultural humus, generate fertile new land for cohabitation and creativity. Fabbrica Europa '08 investigates the performing arts by means of an itinerant dialogue that sets out from Florence and visits a number of European cities in search of new alphabets and original methodologies to share, in order to bring to life a network of organisations, artists and researchers.


One part of the project is devoted to the staging of Jean Genet's text  I Negri, starting out from the meeting between the Senegalese musician and griot Badara Seck and the Italian director and choreographer Gustavo Frigerio (national premiere, May 7, 8). A group of 7 African artists (from their home countries or else already living in Italy) worked on the French author's text to experiment with the dialogue and reciprocal contamination. The project is conceived as a work in progress and is structured in various stages. The sight of African artists on stage working on Genet's text, using their own songs, music and dance, creates a magical disorientation. A troupe of comic actors - the charismatic Senegalese griot Badara Seck, the well-known Cameroonian actress Felicité Mbezele, the dancer Keba Seck and the singer/ballerina Awa Koundoul (Senegal), the musicians Alpha Diene and Madya Diabate (Senegal) and the dancer Ibrahim Ouattara (Burkina Faso) - carry out a strange ceremonial death sentence on a white woman and through this representation they try to be exactly what white people imagine them to be: dirty criminals.
Europe <-> Mediterranean <-> Africa is also the theme of Dialogue, a project conceived by Maurizia Settembri with Giorgio Rossi, on dance and cultural confrontation. Structured in a number of stages, it is a human and artistic dialogue involving 15 young European, African and Mediterranean-area dancer-choreographers; after a creative residency at the Sosta Palmizi Association, these young people present the results in a national premiere at Fabbrica Europa on May 22, the European Day for Intercultural Dialogue. Artists taking part: Virpi Pahkinen (Finland), Vincenzo Carta (Italy), Snjezana Premus (Slovenia), Raffaella Galdi (Italy/Germany), Benjamin Vandewalle (Belgium), Ebru Cansiz (Turkey), Ayman Al Fayat (Egypt), Liz Lea (UK), Silvia Bugno (Italy). The African artists of Dialogue are from the Danse l'Afrique Danse project of Culturesfrance (Tunis); on May 21 they present an evening of Assoli: Moustapha Gueye (Senegal), Jean Tamba (Senegal), Prince Dethmer Nzaba (Congo), Michel Kouakou (Ivory Coast), Pape Ibrahima N'Diaye (Senegal), Maria Helena Pinto (Mozambique). Dialogue is under the guidance and coordination of the choreographer Giorgio Rossi, Sosta Palmizi Association. The musical compositions, an original sound environment created for the Leopolda, are performed live by Michele Rabbia and Alessandro Gwiss of the Aires Tango Group.

A production situated between dance, music and video is Dei secoli. Ubuntu rehearsals #1,  conceived by the young Florentine dj and videoartist Letizia Renzini, continuing with her videophotographic work Tears for Johannesburg already presented at Il Ponte Gallery of Florence. The show is a reflection on belonging and acceptance, on visibility and transparency, between the opaque and the translucent, a relation between shadows and between shadows and light, played on stage by dancer Marina Giovannini with the collaboration of Cristina Rizzo (national premiere, May 3, 4)

On May 8 and 9 Fabbrica Europa hosts two days of meetings starting from a new stage in the process of evolution and interaction of cultural relations among artists and European structures, between Mediterranean and African culture. In the meetings, with the participation of operators and directors of African and European festivals, there will be a debate on artistic creation in order to promote circulation of the works, and on the opening of residence spaces in the various countries, to set the foundations of reciprocal cooperation to enourage and develop coproduction projects and to generate a diffusion mechanism between Europa <-> Mediterraneo <-> Africa.

One of the most meaningful presences on the international panorama is the Galili Dance Company, inaugurating the festival on May 3 and 4. Itzik Galili - a choreographer originally from Israel who settled in Holland at the age of thirty and founded his own company - has come to the fore as one of the most interesting protagonists on the European scene. To be presented at Fabbrica Europa, an absolute premiere for Italy, is Mirage, a series of pièces created to exalt the personal features of the dancers, involved by Galili right from the creative stage: Until.with/out.Enough, The Butterfly Effect, The Sofa Scene, When You See God... Tell Him, Six. Galili Dance will hold a masterclass for professional dancers.
From Norway to Florence comes Zero Visibility Corp, a company under choreographer Ina Christel Johannessen. Presented at the festival is I have a secret to tell you (please) leave with me, a work centering on the myth of Plato's cave and the flight from the world of shadows towards the world of shapes (national premiere, May 10, 11).

Norway again with the Wee Company that presents live*, a performance springing from the encounter between the choreographer and dancer Francesco Scavetta and the composer Luigi Ceccarelli. The work integrates the strong video presence, elaborated together with the visual artist Tone Myskja. Developing from an investigation into vision and illusion, the everyday and unreality, artificiality and misrepresentation, the show takes place in an acoustic and visual environment where reality and its electronic/virtual reproduction are never clearly distinguished but intersect one with the other, between them creating complex, continually variable relations. At the end of the evening Scavetta is the protagonist of a dj set (May 6).

Chaotic, explosive and overwhelming is the dance presented at Fabbrica Europa by the young Dutch formation T.r.a.s.h. : Weiter: live music and overpowering rhythms beaten out by a strong physicality mark the time of this dynamic performance, sometime provocative, sometime poetic (May 6).

A silent, rarefied, intimate atmosphere permeates Try, the solo presented by Antonella Bertoni of the Abbondanza-Bertoni Company (May 20). Only one body abandoned on stage, seed of a new progeny, witness of an end but also the progenitor and survivor of a new dawn. In this female body, all the bodies and the history of all humanity.

After their appearance in the MOVING_movimento '06 project, Vincenzo Carta and Benjamin Vandewalle return with the new piece Inbetween, coproduced by Fabbrica Europa. Shut up in a dance studio for ten days unable either to go out or to speak, the two dancers explore the choreographical gesture, excluding the logics of verbal communication and analysing ways of interaction that are alternative to the word, experimenting what can be done but cannot be said (national premiere, May 20 and 21).

MOVING_movimento reaches its IV year, a project of choreographical residencies for contemporary dance, devoted to young choreographers living in Italy or working abroad. This project welcomes with particular interest those projects that involve collaboration between choreographers and dancers from different European countries and with European or non-European production centres. This initiative supports research into dance by means of the construction, realisation and presentation of shows in order to encourage exchange and expose young people to diverse creative stimuli generated by constant contact with the audience and international operators and artists. Work by young choreographers is open to the public view (through open rehearsals), creating a training continuum of comparison and verification. The Examining Commission has chosen the following formations to present their work in the national premiere on May 15 and 16: OOFFOURO/N.P.A Officina Ouroboros with WBNR-What Burns Never Returns by Alessandro Carboni; Luigi Coppola / Yuko Kaseki / Isak Immanuel with the video project Untitled Portrait, Untitled Ocean and the performance Atti di ordinario esercizio democratico by Luigi Coppola & Loss; the choreographer from Tuscany Max Barachini with Fog.
O homem provisorio (The Provisional Man), the latest show put on by the Casa Laboratorio per le Arti del Teatro di São Paulo (Laboratory Home for the Theatre Arts of São Paulo), is at Fabbrica Europa from May 16 to May 18 in European premiere, after a two months' stand in San Paolo and having taken part with great success in two important international reviews in Brazil, at Londrina and São José do Rio Preto. The work of staging the show was strongly inspired by the theatrical expedition carried out by the group of the Laboratory Home - under the guidance of Cacà Carvalho in collaboration with the Pontedera Theatre, Roberto Bacci and Francesca della Monica - in the sertão del Cariri in September 2006. Geraldo Alencar and Nilo, traditional Cariri artists, collaborated on the show creating respectively the text and the original woodcuts.

From the United States, the historical company The Living Theatre arrives in Florence with The Brig, a European premiere on May 13 and 14: a horrifying portrayal of brutality in military prisons. The pièce was written by Ken Brown, a veteran who survived a United States Marine Corps prison in 1950. The original production won the OBIE Award as the best pièce in 1963 and Jonas Mekas' film made from it won the Golden Lion as the best documentary at the Venice Film Festival the next year. From April to October 2007, The Brig was on stage at 21 Clinton Street, Manhattan (the company's new premises in the heart of the East Village) with 114 performances, again winning the OBIE Award for the direction and the cast.

The Cantieri Teatrali Koreja presents Il Calapranzi (The Dumb Waiter). Written by Harold Pinter in 1957, it is a powerful metaphor for the mechanism of an almost impalpable underground violence, all the oppressive fury of which explodes in sudden outbursts. Theatre of the absurd or theatre of fear? Fifty years on, the pièce continues to defy classification in any one theatrical genre, raising timeless queries that echo around the walls of a basement (May 23, two performances).

The first edition of 4 Cantieri Teatrali per Fabbrica Europa (4 Theatrical Worksites for Fabbrica Europa), a project design on the Alcatraz space of the Stazione Leopolda. The project, curated by Roberto Bacci, arises from the idea of supporting and closely following a number of young Italian companies, giving them the chance to present their own work at a national premiere in a context providing further occasion for growth and confrontation. The choice came from the analysis of 150 proposals of as many groups and artists. The four companies selected are: Gruppo Nanou with Sulla conoscenza irrazionale dell'oggetto (May 7, 8), Habillé d'Eau with Stato secondo (May 14, 15), Città di Ebla with Pharmakos - Movimento(May 17, 18), Teatro Sotterraneo with La Cosa 1 (May 20, 21).

Fosca/Caterina Poggesi presents Tangeri II, a study of (about) three minutes for one spectator at a time who spends the duration of a single song by Billy Holiday in a night club, frequented by a dozen customers, in a vaguely end-of-century rivisitation, with an aftertaste of contemporary nightmare (May 21-23).

On May 11 Fabbrica Europa hosts Accordéon! Les anches rebelles, a concert by accordion-player Pascal Contet, an initiative within "Suona Francese - Festival di nuova musica", promoted by the French Embassy in Italy together with Culturesfrance and realised in Florence in collaboration with Fabbrica Europa, Tempo Reale and the French Institute of Florence. Pascal Contet on this occasion plays traditional pieces and improvisations for the accordion, alternating with contemporary pieces, among which the first-ever performance of a work by the composer Franck Bedrossian, written during a period of residence in the Tuscan capital.
The project also includes two days devoted to the sixty years of musique concrète, organised by Tempo Reale in Studio C of the RAI premises in Florence; the two meetings (May 10 and 17) will present composers Christian Zanési and Daniel Teruggi of the prestigious GRM in Paris, founded by the father of musique concrète, Pierre Schaeffer.

In coproduction with Musicus Concentus, on May 15 Fabbrica Europa hosts the concert by the Supersilent. The Norwegian group moves from jazz to electronics, from the avant-garde to the music ambient. And all rigorously improvised. There is one thing only on which the Supersilent concentrate absolutely: the performance. Not only do the band members not talk about their own music, they do not prepare it, write it, arrange it or overdub it. They simply improvise, freely, collectively, in the recording studio as in a concert.

Fabriek Dubbel Trio: a concert with the stars of international jazz coming from the Dutch scene or influenced by it, and joining up for the occasion in a totally new double trio. Not to be missed are the improvisations played by Augusto Forti, the Florentine clarinettist now in Holland, the mythical Larry Fishkind, one of the foremost tuba improvisers on the European scene, and the drummer Han Bennink, a real legend internationally. The "organised free sound" of the Florentine trio Isola/Dillon/Pedol completes the evening (May 9).

On May 16 and 17, the final stage of Roots&Routes is presented, a three-year project (2005-2008) promoting young talent, carried forward by the cultural organisations in twelve great European cities (Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Bologna, Budapest, Cologne, Florence, Helsinki, Lille, Lisbon, London and Rotterdam) and supported by the European Commission. Roots&Routes undertakes scouting, training, accompaniment for production and promotion for young musicians, dancers and media makers with different cultural 'roots', to open up 'routes' for them both live on stage and in the media. The project comes to completion in 2008 with a great trans-national event in Florence with coaches and talents from all the participating countries, for a week of workshops and rehearsals from which will emerge, in an encounter among the languages of music, dance and the media, an original show called Roots&Routes A_Maze, freely inspired by Philip K. Dick's novel A Maze of Death.

City Mix is a project curated by Andrea Mi in collaboration with Intooitiv for Fabbrica Europa 2008. It is configured as a journey among the "Hot Spots" of contemporary electronic creativity, in those cities which by nature and vocation have become the hot spots of artistic merging, the propulsive junctions on a constantly expanding map. In the ever-widening panorama of the arts and electronic mixmedial experiences, some towns more than others seem able to collect, motivate and give space to productive energies which bring together research, experimentation and production quality. The journey starts from Florence, in whose undergrowth new energies and project creations take their first steps, thence moving through avant-garde cities such as Amsterdam and Rotterdam, stopping in Cologne, the German epicentre of the culture club, then heading north in digital geography to reach London (May 3, 9, 10, 17 andd 23). On stage for City Mix>Florence are: METùO, Ether, Alfa Romero and Blanche, while Ciboideale presents the installation Iceberg; for City Mix>Amsterdam and City Mix>Rotterdam, Parra Soundsystem, Tom Trago, Lietron aka  Gerd, Monica Electronica, Mediaontwerpers; for City Mix>Cologne Ada, Kernes, Lichtfront, while for City Mix>London Telematik Guru, Numa Crew, Milanese, Neil Landstrumm, Selfish.
Between one live and the next: sonorisations by URBANsoundWORK, a project by Radio Papesse (Siena).

Dutch hip hop phenomena Pete Philly & Perquisite are on stage on May 18. The eclectic fusion of hip hop, jazz and soul, contaminated by wide-ranging influences from the psychedelic Sixties to the classics, is the style code of this project, the true protagonist of the international underground scene.

For the first time, Fabbrica Europa offers the late-evening Musica Open Club, a series of free concerts - in collaboration with Rex Cafè - ranging from rock to electronics, from jazz to the classic song-writers, from world music to blues, from folk to noise, to electronic jazz, to the dj set. Among the stars on stage: Letizia Renzini aka dj Molli, Ardù, Amana Melomè, Baby Blue, Elettroswing, Neon, Evangelista/Carla Bozulich, Ostpolitik (May 4, 7, 8, 11, 13, 20, 21 and 22).

SPECIAL EVENT in support of the Ospedale Pediatrico Meyer of Florence
La Fabbrica della Musica, the closing evening of Fabbrica Europa '08 (May 24), is a great non-stop concert with the participation of numerous personalities on the Tuscan arts, music and culture scene. So a party with surprise guests who have generously and readily recognised the importance of this initiative to make this evening a unique event. Stazione Leopolda becomes one great stage full of music, exceptional guests, great entertainment. A party to thank the city for the care and affection it has always shown for the Hospital and, at the same time, to raise funds for the Meyer Children's Hospital Foundation to support the Meyer's Centre of referral, the Regional Children's Diabetics Centre.

The stars of the Casa Laboratorio per le Arti del Teatro di São Paulo meet the public on May 15.
Prof. Luigi Lombardi Vallauri holds two meetings at the French Institute of Florence entitled Mystics and geopolitics: the Tibet of Milarepa (May 14) and Mystics and geopolitics: the Cuba of Marti (May 16).
Within the MOVING_movimento project: the new technologies applied to dance and performing arts are investigated in two meetings open to the public: Between choreography and digital art (May 16) and (Dis)organised trajectories: methodologies and practice between city, choreography and generative code (May 17).
Eugenia Casini Ropa, history of dance teacher at the DAMS of Bologna, presents Susana Zimmermann's book Cantos y Exploraciones: caminos de Teatro-Danza (May 20).
The movement and the words is the title of the meeting held with the public by the Abbondanza Bertoni Company on May 21. Curated by FTS and ARDSU and in collaboration with the Accademia delle Belle Arti of Florence.

Fabbrica Europa also offers a chill-out space: Lib(e)roviaggiatore aids books to escape from bookshops, warehouses and dusty shelves so that they can circulate within the Stazione Leopolda and come across a reader who will adopt them before letting them circulate once more, or else keep them but replace them with others for circulation.

The set-up of Stazione Leopolda is a stage project by Lucilla Papa carried out by Alessandro Cusani and Giacomo Bartoli in collaboration with NABA.
Videos from the archives showing Fabbrica Europa's fifteen years of life will also be projected, curated by Luca Ballini. The archive access system is organised by Tommaso Arosio.

From May 14 to June 30 La Strozzina, the Contemporary Culture Centre in Palazzo Strozzi, in collaboration with Fabbrica Europa hosts the multimedia installation Exploded Views - Remapping Firenze by Marnix de Nijs. The Dutch artist will take digital photographs of Florence to be elaborated into 180° visual panoramas. The installation will involve the spectator who activates images and sounds by  means of a moving walkway.

In the context of international collaboration we wish to point out that the shows by Netherlands artists and companies (Galili Dance, T.r.a.s.h., the Amsterdam and Rotterdam section of City Mix, Pete Philly & Perquisite, the Fabriek Dubbel Trio, Roots&Routes, the installation by Marnix de Nijs) in the Fabbrica Europa programme are also part of OLANDIAMO?, a showcase on Holland's best artistic production from music to art, from fashion to architecture, curated by the Netherlands Embassy in Rome in collaboration with the Nederlands Fonds voor de Podiumkunsten NFPK, the Theaterinstituut Nederland TIN and the Dutch University Institute of the History of Art NIKI.

The festival Fabbrica Europa 2008 has been funded with the support from the European Commission.


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