Angelin Preljoçaj b. 1957
The Rite of Spring (2001)
Duration: 40 minutes

To Karin Waehner

Whenever I listen to Igor Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring" - veritable ground-swell of music of the 20th century - what I feel transpires through this work is as much a matter of fascination as of a feeling of ancestral terror.

This music unceasingly carries along with it a slowly rising force of desire, and at the same time, a kind of controlled panic.

A blend of madness at the thought of perpetrating an act literally dictated by the very molecules of our being and at the same time of jubilation stimulated by our senses ? a leap forward imbued here with the power of an irremediable force. When faced with this ancestral mechanism, the bodies of the dancers, drunk with exhaustion, have no choice but to participate in this ritual.

Bringing the clan together around an impulse that is, in the end, biological, the Rite of Spring reminds us that as long as men and women continue in their spiritual, cultural or intellectual quest, they will unceasingly and inevitably stumble against this weakness.

As Pascal Quignard says in "sex and fright":
""we carry with us the mental disarray of our own conception. There is no image that shocks us more than that of reminding us of the gestures of our very inception.

Angelin Preljocaj

Creation 2001 for 12 dancers

Duration: 40 minutes

Choreography: Angelin Preljocaj

Music: Igor Stravinsky

Performed by Chicago Orchestra

Conducted by Daniel Barenboïm

Set Design: Thierry Leproust

Lighting: Marion Hewlett

Costumes: Eric Bergère

Staatsoper - Berlin, Théâtre de la Ville - Paris, Arsenal - Metz, Auditorium - Dijon, Remscheid Theatre - Germany, Reggio Emilia Theatre - Italy, NEFA - USA

Funded in part by the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts, with lead funding from National Endowment for the Arts and Doris Duke Charitable Foundation

Additional funding provided by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Philip Morris Companies Inc., Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and The British Council