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UMS Concert Program, March 9, 2018 - March 10, 2018 - Borderline

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Borderline A production of Company Wang Ramirez Honji Wang and SŽbastien Ramirez Choreography and Artistic Direction Friday Evening, March 9, 2018 at 8:00 Saturday Evening, March 10, 2018 at 8:00
Power Center
Ann Arbor 67th and 68th Performances of the 139th Annual Season
27th Annual Dance Series This weekendÕs performances are funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Endowment Fund. Media partnership provided by WDET 101.9 FM and Ann ArborÕs 107one. Special thanks to Clare Croft, Bill DeYoung, Jessica Fogel, Grace Lehman, and the Ann Arbor Y for their participation in events surrounding this weekendÕs performances. Company Wang Ramirez appears in North America by exclusive arrangement with 2Luck Productions. In consideration of the artists and the audience, please refrain from the use of electronic devices during the performance. The photography, sound recording, or videotaping of this performance is prohibited. COMPANY Performers / Louis Becker, Johanna Faye, Sa•do Lehlouh, Alister Mazzotti, SŽbastien Ramirez, Honji Wang CREATIVE TEAM Artistic Direction and Choreography / Honji Wang and SŽbastien Ramirez Rigging Development / Jason OettlŽ and Kai Gaedtke Rigger / Alister Mazzotti Composition / Jean-Philippe Barrios, with the participation of Christophe Isselee and the voices of Chung-Won Wang and Henri Ramirez Lighting Design / Cyril Mulon Dramaturgical Collaboration / Catherine Umbdenstock Set Design / Paul Bauer Costume Realization / Anna Ramirez Production Management Services / Academy for Dance and Theatre Arts Technical & Production Manager / Bartolo Cannizzaro Tour Manager / Clare Cannizzaro Borderline is approximately 70 minutes in duration and is performed without intermission. Following Friday eveningÕs performance, please feel free to remain in your seats and join us for a post-performance Q&A with members of the company. 3 BORDERLINE Borderline marks a turning point in SŽbastien Ramirez and Honji WangÕs research and choreographic language. The dance expands in a dialogue between technique and the art of rigging, while the reflection on human relationships includes the reality of living together in our democracies. Social boundaries are evoked by the interplay of physical forces on the stage as well as through testimonies collected from the dancersÕ friends and relatives, or from the media, and broadcasted in voice-overs. The rigging element, a scenic tool notorious as Deus Ex Machina in the Greek tragedy, allows the performers to approach weightlessness to create timeless poetics. In the interactions with the rigger, the body becomes the object of a weight game of balance and freedom. Attached to cables, the five dancers bring to light and transpose the desire of freedom inherent in all forms of dance, especially hip hop. With a wealth of experience in levitation, hip hop discovers new ways to thwart gravity in its virtuosity of footwork. The gestures and the costumes create images that reflect Greek and Korean traditions in animality, as well as in our desires and angsts. Between the promise of freedom and the violence of keeping our bodies on the ground is a space allowing the invention of a new gestural approach. With great fluidity, the piece displays accents of acrobatics, visual poetry, and the urban universe. It extends to the ground where the gravitational borderlines shift horizontally, in a mobile scenography that continues to evolve throughout the performance. TEXTS AND TRANSLATIONS
The following texts are heard during the piece, and the English texts or translations are printed for your reference. Solo SŽbastien Ramirez: 
SŽbastienÕs father Do you know what ÒdemocracyÓ means? ItÕs when the people govern. People have never governed! ItÕs never the people who rule. No, the world has never been fair, never. When they demonstrate belowÉthose who cash in 3000Ð4000 euros per month, who have fortunes, they donÕt accept others demonstrating. ÒWhat are they demonstrating about, those good-for-nothings? WhatÕs it for?Ó Just leave them alone. Life needs to be normal, like a quiet riverÉ When IÕm told: ÒWhen you retire, youÕll travel.Ó Travel where? You want to go to Africa to see the poor people? Yes, go to Africa, make the most of it! A meal costs, whatÉ1Û, 1.50Û. You think IÕd go there? IÕd be ashamed. I wonÕt go to poor countries. To save a nickel? Many countries live off of tourism. But the people donÕt live off of tourism! ItÕs the capitalists who are there and who live off of tourism. I remember in Spain, the first tourists I saw, I was youngÉ. The Brits and Germans used to come. How my mother despaired! Because before, a kilo of potatoes cost three pesetas and when the tourists came, it cost 10! My father was always poor. We were always poor even with all the tourism. ItÕs all lies. This is why I donÕt like this society. I rebelled. I donÕt care about any of it. I donÕt want to know anything about it. IÕm not interested at all. There is nothing to do. Just lock yourself up. Someone said: ÒIf you are happy, donÕt tell anyone.Ó Happy people arenÕt liked. ItÕs against nature, itÕs not natural. ItÕs not normal. ÒLetÕs live in hiding.Ó ThatÕs why I feel good with my own people. I have nothing more to say. ItÕs shameful. What does it all mean? ItÕs over my head. Because once youÕve eaten, once youÕve drank, once youÕve made love, what else do you want to do? Why have 200 million in the bank? To do what with? Duo of dancers: Bowls of rice There was a doctor, Masaru Emoto, a Japanese man. He did experiments with water. He did an experiment where he realized that the water molecule reacted to sound and energies. He took three bowls of rice and placed them in an apartment and three different people came to visit them during the day. Here, IÕll give you a bowl, imagine itÉIÕm going to say: ÒI love youÓ to my bowl of rice. And you say: ÒI hate you.Ó And no one will say a thing to the third bowl. ItÕs not calculated. The doctor proved that the bowl of rice that was said ÒI love youÓ to was edible for almost a month. What do you say to your bowl of rice? I hate you. Well, your bowl of rice, after just one week, is no longer edible because it received bad energies. And the third bowl that stayed alone on the table without receiving any emotion rotted after one or two days because it was ignored. Indifference kills. Even ÒI hate youÓ keeps you living. Are you listening? What IÕm saying is very important! It has to do with everything alive. We are made of 80% water! Understand? I have ears! IÕm listening to you. Calligraphy: a teacherÕs testimony Monday, November 17, 10:30 am. 
Trade School, Gers. I was giving my class when suddenly, without notice, four determined policemen accompanied by a dog handler, decked out with his dog, barged in. They didnÕt say hello or introduce themselves. With no preamble, the dog was let loose. The students were extremely surprised. I questioned the intruders asking what the purpose of their visit was. Radio silence. I insisted and quickly understood that IÕd better just shut up. The students were shocked; the atmosphere was heavy, threatening. I opened a window, and then without a word, one of the policemen peremptorily closed it. The dog ran all over the place. It bit onto one of my studentÕs bags and he was then asked to exit the class. The dog drooled on a young manÕs legs, terrorized. On hats, on clothes. The animal detected something suspicious in someoneÕs pocket, and once again, the student was asked to exit. I tried to intervene but I was silenced. The bags were emptied in the hallway. Wallets were opened. This operation took place in 10 classes and lasted more than an hour. 30 suspected students were sent into a different room and were thoroughly searched. Some were stripped to their underwear. Amongst the students were minors. In the HND class, the dog ripped apart a bag. The student then discovered his smashed computer. HeÕs told he can press charges if he wants. In another room, the students were lined up in front of the blackboard. According to them and their teacher, the dog handler yelled: ÒOne move and heÕll bite your artery and youÕll end up in the hospital.Ó Policemen paced up and down the hallways outside the classrooms. I learned later that no particular event took place in the establishment to justify such a raid. The students were dumbstruck and scared. They interrogated me once the group left. I didnÕt know what to say. 
I remained speechless. The element of surprise freezes you. Beyond the legal or illegal aspect of the operation was the ill-mannered, threatening, sarcastic, aggressive, and scornful attitude of the policemen. They left a classroom saying: ÒBye girlies!Ó when of course there were only young men, and congratulated them for having well-stashed their dope and abusing their dogs. Real thugs wouldnÕt have reacted any differently. It was in France, in a school, in 2008. I thought policemen were here to help people, support us, be our lucid and conscious guides. But instead of that, they barged in flaunting their power like cowboys terrorizing the young students. I wanted this to be known because itÕs happening here in our schools. And itÕs absolutely unacceptable. Thank you. 5 6 ARTISTS Since the creation of Company Wang Ramirez, Honji Wang and SŽbastien Ramirez have produced and choreographed dance-theater pieces that have won them many awards and accolades, such as New YorkÕs Bessie Award and the nomination for the Rolex Mentor & ProtŽgŽe Arts Initiative Program. Acclaimed by international audiences, the Company has been invited to major theaters and festivals, including ThŽ‰tre de la Ville, La Villette, and ThŽ‰tre National de Chaillot (Paris); SadlerÕs Wells (London); Apollo Theater (New York); and Mercat de les Flors (Barcelona); and also receives the support of important international co-producers. Company Wang Ramirez developed a conceptual dance performance for the opening celebration of the arts space MADE in Berlin. In 2015, they choreographed and contributed to the creation phase of MadonnaÕs Rebel Heart Tour in 2015Ð16. In 2016, SadlerÕs Wells invited them to direct and perform a dance work made to Nitin SawhneyÕs album Dystopian Dream. Company Wang Ramirez never seizes to deepen their quest of finding new choreographic languages with means of expression built on technical virtuosity, poetry, humor, and the questioning of human identities. They currently encourage and explore strong artistic collaborations with artists from different fields. Honji Wang (choreographer/artistic director/performer) was born and raised in Germany by Korean parents. Her dance language is an abstraction of hip hop dance and has influences of earlier martial arts and ballet training. She is recognized as an artist who brings contemporary and hip hop together in an exceptionally organic fashion. Together with SŽbastien Ramirez, Ms. Wang received the Bessie Award in 2013 for ÒOutstanding PerformersÓ following the presentation of AP15 at the Apollo Theatre in New York. Their work Monchichi was one of the 2017 Bessie Award nominees for ÒOutstanding ProductionÓ following its performances at BAM. Ms. Wang was invited to MadonnaÕs final auditions in New York, where her outstanding performance earned her an invitation to tour and perform for the Rebel Heart Tour. She was invited as a guest artist to perform a duo with acclaimed British choreographer Akram Khan titled The Pursuit of Now, which was accompanied by well-known pianist Shahin Novrasli. She also collaborated with the avant-garde female flamenco dancer Roc’o Molina in the duet Felahikum as well as with New York City Ballet principal dancer Sara Mearns in Duet No. 1. Born in the south of France, SŽbastien Ramirez (choreographer/artistic director/performer) specializes in the use of aerial work as well as choreographic rigging development. Since the foundation of his company, he developed a new vision of space and choreography, bringing hip hop dance to a wider and new audience. Following the presentation of AP15 at the Apollo Theatre in New York, Mr. Ramirez and Honji Wang received the Bessie Award in 2013 for ÒOutstanding Performers.Ó Their work Monchichi was one of the 2017 Bessie Award nominees for ÒOutstanding ProductionÓ following its performance at BAM. Mr. Ramirez contributed to the creation phase of MadonnaÕs Rebel Heart Tour in New York City and choreographed for her live show. Akram Khan invited him to direct a personal workshop at the ThŽ‰tre de la Ville in Paris, a recognition of his unique quality of movement. He was also invited by SadlerÕs Wells as one of the five choreographers of RIOT OffSpring, a unique dance piece performed to Igor StravinskyÕs iconic The Rite of Spring played by Southbank Sinfonia. Louis Becker (performer) has a strong base in bboying and has broadened his artistic expressions with contemporary dance, acrobatics, and drama. Winner of an impressing number of bboy battles, he is also tours internationally with Company Constanza Macras. Johanna Faye (performer) has her dance roots in breaking, and experience in contemporary dance and improvisation. She works with choreographers Amala Dianor, JŽrŽmie Belingard, Tishou Aminata Kane, and Sylvain Groud. Sa•do Lehlouh (performer) is a charismatic bboy who was spotted early for his extraordinary dance skills, stage presence, and interpretation. He has participated in important dance theater productions with artists including Storm (ThŽ‰tre de Chaillot, Paris; Centre National de Danse, Pantin; Hebbel am Ufer, Berlin), Constanza Macras (Berlin), and Norma Claire (French Guiana). Alister Mazzotti (performer and rigger) has performed and coordinated stunts, fights, and physical effects on more than 500 movies and commercial and theatrical productions over the past 25 years. He headed action departments on Oscar-winning films (special effects for The Pianist and stunts for The Lives of Others) and has received nominations for outstanding stunt work for DAFF and the Taurus World Stunt Awards. Cyril Mulon (lighting designer) has studied camera and lighting design and is also the CompanyÕs technical director. Serving as lighting and stage manager for Peter BrookÕs company (ThŽ‰tre des Bouffes du Nord, Paris, France) for over a decade, he has gained a wide scope of artistic and technical experiences. His eclectic career reaches from documentary, video, photography, and lighting design for theater productions, operas, and dance. Jean-Philippe Barrios (composer), also known as lacrymoboy, is a successful percussionist and drummer and the composer of Borderline. For dance classes, he collaborates with contemporary companies such as Angelin Preljocaj, Jean-Claude Gallotta, and Norrdans Company. Performing as a musician, dancer, and actor, he is part of many international companies, including Brodas Bros in Barcelona. UMS welcomes Company Wang Ramirez as the Company makes its UMS debut this weekend. Photo (next spread): Company Wang Ramirez in Borderline; photographer: Franz Szafinski. The original soundtrack of Borderline is available on and on iTunes 
(artist: lacrymoboy). Co-produced by ThŽ‰tre de lÕArchipel, scne nationale de Perpignan (creation residency); ThŽ‰tre de la Ville, Paris; Parc de La Villette, Paris; Initiatives dÕArtistes en Danses Urbaines (Fondation de France Ð Parc de la Villette with the support of Caisse des DŽp™ts and AcsŽ); Mercat de les Flors Barcelone (creation residencies at Graner); ActÕart Ð Conseil dŽpartemental de Seine-et-Marne; Centre ChorŽgraphique National de CrŽteil et du Val-de-Marne / Company KŠfig; and TANZtheater INTERNATIONAL, Hannover. Supported by regional council Occitanie/PyrŽnŽes-MŽditerranŽe; Regional Cultural Affairs Directorate Occitanie; and county council PyrŽnŽes Orientales. Special thanks to Centre Culturel Jacques PrŽvert ˆ Villeparisis for the creation residency; HAU Ð Hebbel am Ufer for the research possibilities in Berlin; and the support of Montpellier Danse, for the residency at Agora, citŽ internationale de la danse. Company Wang Ramirez Ñ Clash66 receives structural support by Regional Cultural Affairs Directorate Occitanie, by Regional council Occitanie/PyrŽnŽes-MŽditerranŽe and by County council PyrŽnŽes Orientales. The Company receives the support of Foundation BNP Paribas for the development of its projects. SŽbastien Ramirez and Honji Wang are supported artists of ThŽ‰tre de lÕArchipel, scne nationale de Perpignan. For more information, please visit or THIS WEEKENDÕS VICTORS FOR UMS: Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Endowment Fund Ñ National Endowment 
for the Arts Supporters of this weekendÕs performances by Company 
Wang Ramirez. MAY WE ALSO RECOMMEND... 3/23Ð24    Nederlands Dans Theater 4/14    Colin Stetson: Sorrow 4/19Ð21    Cold Blood Tickets available at ON THE EDUCATION HORIZON...   3/10    You Can Dance: Company Wang Ramirez     (Ann Arbor Y, 400 W. Washington Street, 1:30 pm) 3/19    FRAME: A Salon Series on Visual Art, Performance, and Identity     (202 S. Thayer Street Building, Atrium, 7:00 pm) 3/23    Post-Performance Q&A: Nederlands Dans Theater     (Power Center, 121 Fletcher Street)     Must have a ticket to that eveningÕs performance to attend. 3/24    You Can Dance: Nederlands Dans Theater     (Ann Arbor Y, 400 W. Washington Street, 1:30 pm) Educational events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.

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