How do you practice hope?
How can we shift perspectives
…as a festival, as an artist, as a spectator?
Where do we meet?
For 12 years, Dancing on the Edge has been presenting the best of performing arts from the Middle East, North Africa and the diaspora in The Netherlands. Every festival, artists, curators, thinkers, theater professionals and audiences from different parts of the world bring together an abundance of stories and perspectives in one place. Only a small part of that richness is communicated through the performances.
That is why this year Dancing on the Edge is pressing the reset button. To offer a better opportunity to meet and interact on a deeper level, we are deconstructing the festival format. With the soft radicality of open questions. With projects that focus on process and time spent together, that are co-curated or made as a collective. With alternative places that allow for another kind of interaction and a crossing of disciplines. With programs in which we can shift roles: the spectator can become a maker, the artist can emerge as the co-curator of the festival, and where the festival exists only when we all engage.
Dancing on the Edge is a festival that moves between different borders, bodies, histories and (pre)conceptions. In its working processes and programming, it attempts to challenge singular narratives and identities in representation as well as dominant power structures and (post)colonial relations. Between 13 and 24 November, we would like to invite you all -makers, spectators and partners- to embark with us on a personal and collective journey through the different programs, to unpack themes and urgencies, and to undergo the potentials of the encounter that the festival can provide.
This journey is best experienced by starting with identifying one’s position of departure, then questioning one’s endeavor, formulating a quest for the journey, immersing oneself in several events, finding inspiration and connection, then reflecting on where the journey has brought you. We invite you to join some dots on the map, and make your own travel plan.
We have curated this festival from the idea that a new collectivity is needed. A collectivity where both the individual and different perspectives have a place, where a multiplicity of ourselves can be celebrated. In relation to others, and each of us with a stronger presence. We think that we have to practice, that hope means work. And that we want to work together to practice hope. Each from our own position (and beyond). Are you with us? How do you practice hope?
- Encounter: an unexpected, pivotal or casual meeting with someone or something
- Positionality: the social and political context that creates your identity in terms of race, class, cultural heritage, gender, sexuality, citizenship and ability status
- Quest: search for something
- Endeavour: an attempt to achieve a goal
- Reflection: serious thought or consideration that gives meaning to experience
What’s on the program?
Opening Program of Dancing on the Edge Festival 2019.
Performances & After Talks
A program of contemporary dance and theater performances that share a dedication to an artistic process and practice that foregrounds the complex notions of identity and belonging, of personal and collective histories, and the power of re-writing and re-narrating them. Many of the performances are cross-national, where makers collaborate across disciplines, references and national boundaries.
2048, for instance, is an inquisitive installation, which invites each spectator to venture within themselves in search of a genuine sense of belonging. Entering the installation means activating our own bodies and our awareness of our personal point of departure.
A four-day artistic lab at the heart of the festival, where different festival artists, a number of local and international artists, theater and dance students, and interested festival audience members come together in an open studio space for an intimate exploration of each other’s working processes
Three nights at and co-curated with Mezrab. Each night has a focus based on themes within the festival and explored through performances, story-telling, and music. A program bringing together local performers and festival performers with spectators who would like to improvise.
Second-Hand Body is a writing project, in which five authors write a text collectively. A journey traversing different bodies, temporalities, locations and references. The proposal is based on the concept of second-hand, the re-using of what has already been used and has a history.
The Table talks Series is one of the spaces in which DOTE wants to imagine and realize a shift. Through these encounters, we hope to sense and imagine together: what are the urgencies that guide our practices, which structural changes do we desire and, what are we doing to achieve them? It is a series of 7 Table Talks: 4 before the festival, 2 XL versions during the festival, and 1 after the festival.
Collective Urban Gnawa
What if we come together in dance, in trance? Drawing on both urban and contemporary dance as well as the traditions of trance in Gnawa music and rituals, choreographer Khalid Benghrib will guide a series of workshops leading to a large-scale collective performance in public space. The project is open to everyone: all bodies, ages, backgrounds, from first time dancers to professionals. A gesture in, with and to the city.