The Kennedy Center

Nederlands Dans Theater

Nederlands Dans Theater

Wednesday, April 4, 2018 - Friday, April 6, 2018

Ballet & Contemporary Dance

Known for pushing boundaries with its bold repertory and distinct virtuosity, Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) is prominently imprinted with an avant-garde aesthetic. Based in The Hague, this pioneering Dutch company's non-conformist, progressive productions have put its collective of astonishingly talented dancers on the international map.

Search for Current Events

About

Nederlands Dans Theater
Paul Lightfoot, Artistic Director
Kennedy Center debut
With the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra 
 
Shoot the Moon (Glass/León & Lightfoot)
The Statement (Belton/Pite) (see Pite's notes on this piece further below)
Singulière Odyssée (Richter/ León & Lightfoot)
 
"The world's most magnificent dancers… a retina-shredding spectacle of passion and power"--The Sunday Herald (Scotland)
 
Known for pushing boundaries with its bold repertory and distinct virtuosity, Nederlands Dans Theater (NDT) is prominently imprinted with an avant-garde aesthetic. Based in The Hague, this pioneering Dutch company's non-conformist, progressive productions have put its collective of astonishingly talented dancers on the international map. As Artistic Director Paul Lightfoot says, "Every season's programs include works of choreographers with a clear message… and who can strike a certain atmosphere, emotion, and essence the second the curtain opens."
 
The company makes its Kennedy Center debut with a program that includes two works by Lightfoot and Artistic Advisor Sol León. In Shoot the Moon performed to music by Philip Glass, revolving black-and-white walls create three separate rooms, each containing their own love story--while one of their newest works, Singulière Odyssée, is set in an art deco train station and performed to music by Max Richter, with dancers coming and going except for one who lingers, waits, and watches. The program also features The Statement by NDT Associate Choreographer Crystal Pite. In which four dancers share a heated conversation around a conference table, symbolizing corporate chaos and negotiation.

Performance Timing: Piece 1 - 22 min.; Intermission - 20 min.; Piece 2 - 19 min.; Intermission - 25 min.; Piece 3 - 34 min.
 
Apr. 4: Free post-performance discussion

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Associate Choreographer Crystal Pite's Notes on The Statement
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"The Statement was conceived as a companion piece to a work I created for NDT in 2013 called Parade. Parade is an allegory of an escalating conflict between two cultures. It presents a politicized and volatile frontier, where borders are shifting, and people are displaced or decimated so others can gain ground. Though its theme is as timely as ever, Parade nevertheless sits at a level of remove—as if the events are from a time long ago and in a land comfortably far off. Parade is presented as an absurd circus act, with the conflict exploding between a camp of clowns and a rank-and-file marching band.

"In counterpoint, The Statement is a wedge of realism; cold and current. We recognize both the characters and the language as being of our world and our time. The Statement is a one-act play, with four characters locked in their own battle for control, and with the morality of their actions: they have been tasked with fuelling a conflict in a distant country. Character 'A' declares: 'For generations they’ve been fighting. All we did was use it. We used it as an opportunitythe attacksthefor investment. For growth. We used it.' Now, being asked to take responsibility for their actions in order to exonerate their superiors, a conflict is rising within their department.

"The Statement re-frames Parade as a constructed and exploited ‘theatre of war.' It aims to un-peel its layers of artifice and stylization, and to bring us closer to the content therein; questioning our own level of remove and culpability in events that are unfolding at a distance right now."

Watch and Listen