La La La
Human Steps (Québec)
Choreographer: Édouard Lock
Presented jointly by Festival Montréal en Lumière
and Danse Danse
February 13, 14, 15 & 16, 2003
Place des Arts
On the cultural scene, an Édouard Lock production
is an automatic dont miss. His new creation for nine dancers promises
to be no exception. Dizzying speed, altered body states, light-sculpted
physiques, and on point technique combined with inventive film technology
meet in the new work which will be given its world première in
August 2002 at the LG Arts Center, Seoul. The Korean institution is co-producing.
Then its on the road, for a tour of Europe, Canada, the United States,
Japan and South America.
The new production brings together stage designer Stéphane
Roy, composers David Lang and Alain Thibault, lighting designer John Munro
and designer Liz Vandal (female costumes).
Dark, fascinating, and elusive, Édouard Locks
immense talent has held the spotlight on the worlds dance stages
since the 1980s. Following his debut with Nouvelle Aire, the crucible
from which would emerge so many of the key figures in contemporary dance,
he founded Lock-Danseurs in 1980; it would soon go on to become the legendary
La La La Human Steps. From its very first productions, Lily Marlène
dans la jungle, Oranges and Businessman in Process of Becoming
an Angel, Lock and his dancers reaped praise and prizes: the public
) is caught speechless, entranced, terrified, amused,
wrote the Munchner Merkur, Munich. But it was with Human Sex
in 1985, a veritable earth tremor that shook contemporary dance to its
foundations, that the reputation of La La La Human Steps spread, leaping
oceans and borders. Human Sex, winner of a Bessie Prize, lies at
the core of the things that make Édouard Locks reputation:
speed, complexity, excess. It was closely followed by New Demons,
presented as opening production at the second Festival international de
nouvelle danse in Montréal, and Infante, cest destroy,
created at the Théâtre de la Ville de Paris in 1991. In 1995,
the same prestigious Parisian venue hosted the world première of
2, a work about the passage of time and the finality of existence, carried
entirely by the shoulders of the woman who has embodied the company for
18 years: Louise Lecavalier.
) he calls upon the traditional ballerinas
rigorous points, but inserts them in a force field that is violently anti-ballet.
) At once exhausted and fascinated, spectators are caught up in
an onrushing turmoil that banishes all notions of weight and mass.
The brilliance of Édouard Locks work lies
in its extraordinary and multiform creative power, but also in the intensely
personal manner he brings to the direction of his dancers, who are forced
to the brink. I dont want my interpreters to be in absolute
control of their movements. The more the public feels that the dancer
is master of his movements, the less he fears to see him fall, and hence,
the smaller his emotional investment. The idea is to lead my dancers into
the gray zone where they can begin to communicate something strong, because
the potential for failure is always there. he told Elle Québec
magazine in March 1999. That same month, he told Les Inkoruptibles
) then too, the physical effort I ask of them
has an effect on their movement. The relation is an extremely subtle one.
In any case, dance is a form of torture, and there is no guarantee that
a performance will succeed. There are times when Ive watched the
same version of a production twice in a row; the first time around, the
evening was a success; the next, a total failure. The root of the problem
is that one must control the choreographic material as closely as possible
while maintaining a passionate relationship with the public. So we put
the dancersand their egosat the far edge of that control,
in the kind of situation where the psychological and emotional consequences
do not make for stability.
But there is certainly no lack of stability when it comes
to La La La Human Steps. To date, more than 135 cities in some 20 countries
at 45 festivals have rolled out the red carpet for the company. Édouard
Lock has also created works for the Nederlands Dans Theater, lOpéra
de Paris and Les Grands Ballets Canadiens of Montréal. He was artistic
director and associate creator of David Bowies 1989 tour Sound
and Vision, and directed all the films seen in the production. In
1992, Édouard Lock and La La La Human Steps participated in The
Yellow Shark, a concert conceived and composed by Frank Zappa for
Germanys Ensemble Modern, presented at the Francforts Alte
Oper, the Berlin Philharmonic and the Vienna Kozerthaus.
In addition to the numerous television programs in which
Lock and his company have participated in Europe, North America and Japan,
Édouard Lock took part in a documentary entitled Inspirations
by Michael Apted of Great Britain, examining the creative process of artists
in different disciplines, such as Roy Lichtenstein and Tadao Ando. Québec
filmmaker Bernar Hébert in 1987 directed Human Sex NƯ 1,
winner of six international awards, Le Petit Musée de Velasquez
in 1994 and Infante, broadcast on Radio-Canada in 1996.
The cinema and the dance are closely related,
says Édouard Lock. Like a filmmaker, a choreographer must
select the angle, employ effects like zooms or big close-ups, and exploreeach
in their own waya dynamic relation to the image through montage.(Les
Finally, the photographs of Édouard Lock, taken
over the course of each of his productions, have been exhibited repeatedly
in many countries.
Édouard Locks new creation is a coproduction
of the LG Arts Center (Seoul), the Théâtre de la Ville (Paris),
the Internationale Tanzwochen Wien (Vienna), the National Arts Centre
(Ottawa), of Het Musiektheater (Amsterdam), of De Singel (Antwerp), of
Léonard De Vinci / Opéra de Rouen and of the Festival Montréal
en lumière (Montréal).