Dancing with mechanical works of art in New Ballet mécanique by Richard Siegal

Dancing with mechanical works of art in New Ballet mécanique by Richard Siegal

The world-premiering creation New Ballet mécanique is an impressive undertaking. In this choreography, Opera Ballet Vlaanderen dancers will move between all kinds of moving, swinging, falling and vibrating objects that have to be set in motion by stage technicians with flawless timing.

The brain behind New Ballet mécanique is renowned American choreographer Richard Siegal.

Siegal, who has reaped acclaim especially in Germany after his many years of collaboration with William Forsythe, is always looking for new methods of movement and is fascinated by the biodynamic science behind dance and, for example, the pointe technique. His starting point for New Ballet mécanique is classical ballet technique.

It was his long-held dream to create a work based on the artworks of the Swiss visual artist and musician Zimoun and that is now a reality.

Zimoun, whose work can be found in collections from the Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid to the National Museum of Beijing, creates astonishing installations in large exhibition spaces. For his works, he starts from an ordinary object such as a cardboard box or a wooden stick that he sets in motion via a mechanism. By multiplying this object on a large scale, they become impressive decors. Zimoun has now designed various dynamic stage images, from boxes swinging back and forth to bouncing tennis balls with which the dancers enter into dialogue.

The sound made by the works of art will be sampled live to create a soundscape. The costumes for New Ballet mécanique are by the Austrian haute couture designer Flora Miranda who is based in Antwerp.

New Ballet mécanique shares the bill with Half Life, the 2022 smash hit by the Israeli choreographer Sharon Eyal to the pumping techno beats of Ori Lichtik, which was rapturously received by young audiences in particular.

This evening promises to be an unforgettable sensory experience in which the worlds of dance, visual arts and techno merge. Moreover, it will be the first opportunity to get to know the new group of dancers from Opera Ballet Vlaanderen.

The first performances of New ballet mécanique/Half Lifecan be combined with the final performances of the opera La clemenza di Tito directed by Milo Rau.

General director Jan Raes and artistic director Jan Vandenhouwe cordially invite you to the premiere on October 3 at 8 p.m. at Opera Antwerp or October 24 at 8 p.m. at Opera Ghent. Please confirm your attendance via this link.