Preludes and Fugues

Mateja Rebolj, Magdalena Reiter

Choreography and dance: Mateja Rebolj, Magdalena Reiter

Music: Johann Sebastian Bach

Dramaturgy: Pia Brezavšček

Light design: Mojca Sarjaš

Music analysis: Sašo Vollmaier

Costume design: Mateja Rebolj, Magdalena Reiter

Produced by: Mirabelka Institute

Partners: Bunker Institute, Maska Institute

Photography: Darja Štravs Tisu

Stage premiere: 11 April 2022, Old Power Station – Elektro Ljubljana

The performance is co-financed by the City of Ljubljana – Department of Culture.

” Magdalena Reiter’s dance works noticeably return again and again to a consistent choreographic language. (…) the performative language recognises and implements the possibility inherent in dance to think about the chosen theme through the body and its aliveness.” SiGledal

” the creative team of this performance not only gives us their art of dance, but also evokes in us something called the art of seeing. (…) the body is put centre stage – seeing the body not only as aesthetic, but also as a body that creates a certain path in the world and thus creates time and space.” – Neodvisni

After the duet Forma interrogativa from two decades ago, Preludes and Fugues is the second joint performance of Mateja Rebolj and Magdalena Reiter. It was created as a dialogue between two mature dancers and choreographers, their performative and personal history, and the music of Johann Sebastian Bach. Seven selected preludes and fugues from The Well-Tempered Clavier create a structure for exploring the emotional dimensions built through rhythm, harmony, body architecture, counterpoint.
The compositions in Bach’s collection are set in pairs of preludes and fugues. Both in music and in the concept of the performance as a duet of two equal authors, these pairs are not intended to unify. The dance structures in the performance are rooted in the idea of counterpoint, but do not always and directly follow Bach’s musical structures. The choreographic language is built on the principle of polyphony and counterpoint, whose interlocutors are both music and silence, the presence of the Other, and time.
The aspect of performative time coincides with the concept of time, which is also inscribed in Bach’s compositions. The prelude is an introduction, the opening of a new theme, and the fugue is a development, an upgrade, a polyphony, which is at the same time an evolution of the theme from the prelude. Thus, these two musical forms complement each other, but they can also be metaphorical reflections of the life cycle.
Every body, and most notably the female body, is a place where personal experiences, culture, society, collective and private memory collide and intertwine. The juxtaposition of two dancers at different ages thematically addresses the issue of a body marked by time.

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