L’affadissement du merveilleux
In her sublime new piece, the choreographer Catherine Gaudet probes the life force. An ode to the beauty of being alive, right up to death. Breathtaking.
Endless rounds, circles and loops become cosmic and haunting rituals. Five dancers advance and retreat, staring straight at the audience, their hypnotic presence front and centre, prisoners of unremitting cycles, swept along by the wheel of time. Mutants forever starting over, they are transformed in unison into a slow forward march, part trance and part infernal whirling and twirling.
In her new clean-lined geometric piece, the choreographer Catherine Gaudet abandons her study of inner conflicts to probe the life force. A sampling of humanity from its atomic beginnings to its final heartbeat, L’affadissement du merveilleux investigates the mystery of existence by means of repeated movement, with stultifying routine transformed into bedazzlement. Fluid and ecstatic, this obsessive journey evokes the sacred as well as its resurgence in our blasé rites. An ode to the beauty of being alive, right up to death. Breathtaking.
Produced by Lorganisme
Choreographed by Catherine Gaudet
Performed by Dany Desjardins + Francis Ducharme + Caroline Gravel + Leïla Mailly + James Phillips
Music Antoine Berthiaume
Costume Design Max-Otto Fauteux
Dramaturgical Assistant and Rehearsal Director Sophie Michaud
Lighting Design Alexandre Pilon-Guay
Technical Director and Stage Manager François Marceau
Technical Director (Creation) Olivier Chopinet
Intern Performer Marie-Philippe Santerre
Production Director Dominique Bouchard
Coproduction Agora de la danse + Centre chorégraphique national de Tours
Creative residencies Agora de la danse + Centre chorégraphique national de Tours + Centre de Création O Vertigo + Compagnie Marie Chouinard + Danse à la carte + École de danse Louise Lapierre + Maison de la culture Frontenac
Presented in association with Théâtre Rouge du Conservatoire
Written by Elsa Pépin
Translated by Neil Kroetsch
Premiered at Agora de la danse, on September 26, 2018
Catherine Gaudet (Montreal)
A graduate of the UQAM dance program, Catherine Gaudet began her career as a dancer working for various choreographers before creating her first piece in 2004.
She made her mark over the next two years with Grosse fatigue, which won a choreography award in Denmark, and then L’arnaque. Renowned for a strong, very theatrical style tinged with the absurd, dark humour and a touch of the subconscious, she created a number of short form works that have been presented in Quebec, France, Denmark and Belgium. In 2012 she further explored the human psyche with Je suis un autre, where she stripped the veneer of social façade to reveal the ambiguity of people trapped by their contradictions.
Presented at the FTA in 2014, Au sein des plus raides vertus is rooted in emotion as it dissects our psychic complexity through impressive physicality. In 2016 she co-created with Jérémie Niel La très excellente et lamentable tragédie de Roméo et Juliette, a piece that combines dance and theatre.
The presentation of Tout ce qui va revient as part of La Chapelle Scènes Contemporaines in March 2018 concluded a cycle of works focused on human relations and their shortcomings. With L’affadissement du merveilleux, Gaudet examines cycles as a universal structure, dispensing with the individual in order to pursue an existential quest.
In this laconic geometric study of the circular form—spatial, internal, instinctual—she probes the thirst for grandeur and for a connection to what is beyond our understanding. Catherine Gaudet is a founding member and co-artistic director of the company Lorganisme, an associate artist at DLD-Daniel Léveillé Danse since 2018 and a member of the dance association Circuit-Est centre chorégraphique.