No passado mês de agosto a investigadora esteve em Chicago a participar na Dance Studies Association (DSA) Annual Conference “Dancing in Common”, onde apresentou um trabalho sobre “When baroque dance becomes a contemporary form of choreographic language – what’s its common ground?”.
There are three ways through which we can have access to baroque dance, or any historical dance practice: the written sources, the discourses made about them, and the dance practice, which is based on the previous two but also helps to decipher them. For the historian, it is important to list and describe all of these three items. However, for the choreographer/interpreter there is always a selection that is made, based on his body, his memory and his emotions. Therefore, to study the creative process of transmission and reinvention of baroque dance we must observe these two perspectives, since the contemporary use of an historical repertoire seems to be more concerned with affinity rather than authenticity.
So, how does this happen? What knowledge and what practices do these choreographers/interpreters that choose to work the baroque share between themselves? What is the role of their embodied culture? What defines the common contemporary approach to baroque dance? And, at the end, what common memory of the baroque is being created?
I will try to answer these questions mainly through the work (artistic creations and support to young choreographers) of the French dance company “fêtes galantes”, that defines itself as working with a “contemporary baroque”. The background of this company, the diversity of techniques of its artistic collaborators, their personal understandings of the baroque, it will all be considered in order to find out what is the common ground upon which their contemporary identity is built.