Ben en Vero 2025 - Benjamin Vandewalle

What happens when you make a dance with a body that acts and reacts totally differently than your own? When a body that is disciplined through years of ballet education moves with a body that deals with the symptoms of cerebral palsy: impaired movement with exaggerated reflexes, floppiness or spasticity of the limps and trunk, unusual posture, involuntary movements?This duet will not emphasise differences. It won't be constructed as a clash of oppositions between identities. This dance will be an experiential and experimental choreography for two bodies to move together. It wants to expand the aesthetic standards of how we look at dance and question the exclusivity of most of today’s dance world. It wants to see, question, and try out alternatives to hierarchal structures based on ability, gender and age. How fluid can our identities become, in a dance?Benjamin and Veronique want to start from the desire to challenge each other, to go physically, mentally and spiritually to the edge of what they think they are able to do. They both get inspired by a dance where risk is involved, and where it is no longer clear who supports who or who leads who. A dance that opens the door to unexplored potentials, unknown moments, and unexpected places.We are looking for a multi-layered dance universe in which presence, movement, speech, sound, changing sets and lights support the complexity of a human connection trough movement and space. The set, an assemblage of tilting walls, benches, ropes attached to counterweights, etc... is there to facilitate and support that connection. To create a landscape tailored to the dancers needs where the laws of gravity can be challenged, testing our limits of what is physically possible within a safe container.Like in most of Benjamin’s work, simplicity will be a key word in this duet: a simplicity that makes all the layers of contact transparent and allows every detail to become meaningful and real. Dance goes beyond the physical shapes of two bodies. Thoughts and emotions of the two performers while making this choreography will accompany their movements. The dance will expand through a landscape of soundbites, speech sequences recorded during the creation process of becoming partners in dance. Offering different layers of perspective to how the dance can be seen and read showing the richness of what depth there is between two humans embarking on this journey together.

By and with Veronique Mees and Benjamin Vandewalle Live music Pakyan Lau Scenography Erki De vries Dramaturgy Robert Stijen, Mira Bryssinck Production Caravan Production