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Mer-”, refers to the Indo-European roots of “Mourir”, the French word for dying. At the same time it also refers to the sea, la mer, in French: as a metaphor for death, which carries the idea of something “beyond” the horizon, a sense of boundlessness, mystery and the unknown.

Mer-

Claire Croizé and Etienne Guilloteau

The concept of “finiteness” is a vital part of the work of Claire and Etienne, and played a central part in productions like Affected (2006), The Farewell (2009) and Chant éloigné (2012). In Mer- the choreographers explore this theme more deeply: death is front and center, but there is still room left for lightness and joy. Dying is, after all, an integral part of life, and Claire and Etienne research both sides of this balancing act: dying as the most exceptional, most unthinkable thing to happing in a human life, and at the same time the most trivial, most common human experience. Gilles Deleuze famously said that death begins at birth. Not a static event, but a constant movement, like a free fall that lasts our entire life. The idea of dying as a performance is the motor of movement in this dance creation.

Mer- is a piece for five dancers and five singers, built on Requiem-music and other renaissance music. The music is executed by Marnix De Cat’s Pluto Ensemble, who are specialized in early music. This creation is meant for both theatre spaces and alternative spaces such as churches. It will be Claire and Etienne’s first creation based on a mixture of religious and profane music, full of drama and austere beauty. Dance and singing merge in a performance where death is recognized in a celebration of life.

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Concept and choreography
Claire Croizé and Etienne Guilloteau
dancers
Claire Godsmark, Tarek Halaby, Mikko Hyvönen, Emmi Väisänen, Young Won Song
Music interpreted by
Pluto-ensemble
Musical direction
Marnix de Cat
Singers
Marnix De Cat (contre-ténor), Kristen Witmer (Soprane), Adriaan De Koster (ténor), Tore Denys (ténor), Harry van der Kamp (bas)
Light design
Hans Meijer
Costume design
Anne-Catherine Kunz
Production
ECCE vzw
Co-production
Concertgebouw Brugge
in collaboration with
STUK, wpZimmer and Workspacebrussels
With the support of
the Province West-Vlaanderen, Vlaamse overheid
Mer-

Claire Croizé and Etienne Guilloteau

EVOL

Claire Croizé

The Diamond Sea

Etienne Guilloteau

Primitive

Claire Croizé

Feu

Etienne Guilloteau

Zeit-bild

Etienne Guilloteau

Synopsis of a Battle

Etienne Guilloteau