Eifo At/a / Eifo Ani
WHERE ARE YOU / WHERE AM I
The project's basic material
revolves around sounds, voices and movements from the past, from the childhood into the present, according to the festival’s ‘Leitmotiv’ / guiding theme ‘Why Music?’. Dorothea & Omri are looking for sparks in movement and sound which arise from a hidden memory linking to art and folk dance movements, everyday and mainstream expressions in music and dance. A strong impact onto the performance has the attention to the extinct Yiddish language of a small Jewish community near Zurich, in Aargau, a Canton in northern Switzerland. It puts light onto the history and facts that from the 17th to the mid-19th century this was the only area of the permanent Jewish settlement in Switzerland; the Jews lived in the Surbtal in the two communities of Endingen and Lengnau, from where they directed the struggle for the emancipation of Jews in Switzerland. The performers are asking themselves what the sound of (this) language is. ‘What do we hear, how does it resonate today on a physical and verbal level and in a metaphorical sense? What do we do with it, what does it do to us?’ The isolation of this Jewish community in the past, and it’s dialect which had developed over time, could raise issues relating to realities immigrants are facing today and other people who have been isolated from a central society, experiencing situations of alienation. The live-streaming aspect of this work is providing a channel of research how virtuality and its topics, being in a place and at the same time out of place (and also out of time), can effect and affect performers, the media-specialists involved and the audience.
action panels WHERE ARE YOU / WHERE AM I - Eifo At/a / Eifo Ani
The outset of the project
In 2016 Dorothea Rust got an invitation by Room Dances Festival for it’s 29th edition in December 2017. The innovative festival was founded in 1998 by Amos Hetz, (founder and head (until 2002) of the Department of Movement and Movement Notation at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, teaching, lecturing and performing in Israel and abroad). For the past 29 years, the festival’s aim has been: to create a space in which exposed encounters between artists, their creations and audiences can take place and to focuse on strictly innovative and new productions and international collaborations. Dorothea has a memory and experience of being in Israel at different occasions and venues: 1977 travelling through Israel, 2001 participating at Room Dances Festival in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and in a Kibbutz up North in Israel, 2012 participating at ZAZ Festival — Performance Art Platform in Tel Aviv Bus Station and in Haifa at Tveria 15, The Hadar Community Center. The impetus for Dorothea to go to Israel and participate in the festival in 2017 was to find a substantial link between Israel and Switzerland for the content of an art-dance-music-performance project. In 2016 Dorothea saw a short performance by Omri Ziegele with the Surbtal Yiddish an extinct swiss dialect. Omri worked with the sounding of the language. Dorothea wanted to know and learn more about the context of this Swiss dialect. Also knowing that Omri has Jewish background and ancestors who grew up in the Surbtal, Dorothea invited Omri to collaborate and perform for the occasion of this festival. In order to develop a collaborative evening-length work, both of them made (further) research into the traces of Surbtal Yiddish. Thereby they could relay on the experiences of their long term collaboration, Dorothea also onto her congenial collaboration in solo projects with the media specialists Petit Grégoire Videolabor.
Room Dances Festival
Amos Hetz, the founder of Room Dances Festival is a longstanding protagonist in the dance scene in Israel. He functions since it’s first edition in 1998 as the curator of the festival. As Room Dances writes: «The festival has been devoted to fostering a chamber dance, in which the creator connects his senses, his imagination and his thoughts and performs in his body what he connects. For the past 29 years, the festival has been intereste in creating a space in which an exposed encounter between artist, their creations and audiences can take place. The festival focuses on strictly innovative and new productions and international collaborations.»
Kunstraum Walcheturm Zurich
The artspace Kunstraum Walcheturm presents contemporary art, new media, video and film, new music, experimental and electronic music, performance and sound art. It sees its position between art hall, gallery and offspaces offering Swiss and international artists and their audiences a field of experimentation. Kunstraum Walcheturm is an important platform for contemporary composers and electronic listening music. The artspace is centrally located, only 8 walking minutes away from Zürich central station, in Zeughaushof a former military campus. This courtyard is now a public park with an open air restaurant, the buildings surrounding the park are used for several social services, theatre rehearsing spaces, clubbing, craft businesses and more.
From 20—23 December 2017 the performances took place at the Hateiva Jaffa-Tel Aviv
I received the following description of Ha'Teiva Theatre: «Ha’Teiva is in a newly built complex, levelled with an underground parking lot. It has no daylight. Since its inception in 2005, Ha-Teiva has been hosting classical musicians, various Arabic electronic musicians, video-artists, and other events combining the arts with other styles, as well as lectures by visiting musicians. The unique performance hall addresses diverse audiences from all walks of Tel Aviv and Jaffa life. With everything from alternative rock to trance, they've done it all. The stunning Steinway piano in the hall is a perfect addition to the venue as well. With so many options, you're bound to find something worth a ticket here.»
Nobody I got in touch with during my stay in Jerusalem did remember and could confirm this history of this site. There are two halls at the Gerard Behar Center: The Gerard Behar Hall holds 650 seats, and is an auditorium split into a hall and a balcony. The Leo Model Hall is a multi-purpose hall which can hold up to176 modular seats. The Center has two in-house dance companies, produces its own shows, and shows produced in collaboration with other bodies, e.g. Jazz concerts, events which are part of the Israel Festival and the Jerusalem Arts Festival, a variety of school activities, institutions, government offices, various organizations, producers, agents and others
Room Dances Festival flyer english