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Stepping Stones. Jirí Kylián

  • Stepping Stones. Dancers: Patrick de Bana and África Guzmán
  • Choreography: Jirí Kylián 
  • Music: Cage/Webern 
  • Costumes: Joke Visser 
  • Stage and Light Design: Michael Simon
  • World premiered by the Stuttgart Ballet in Stuttgart on the 23rd November, 1991. Premiered by Compañía Nacional de Danza at the Teatro de la Zarzuela, Madrid on the 8th December, 1993.

Stepping Stones refers to Kylián's experiences with the Aborigines. He considers this work to be a choreographic study, based on the respect for the passing on of cultural traditions from father to son and as a homage to the past. In the twenty years that Jirí Kylián's work has been performed in The Netherlands, he has shown a command of a wide range of styles. An important source of inspiration was his experience in Arnhemland on the North coast of Australia, where in 1980 he attended a two week Aboriginal dance festival. He was astounded by the enormous freedom of movement of the indigeous population and the importance the community attached to dance. His experience was crystallised in Nomads (1981) and Stamping Ground (1983). The impact of this encounter can still be seen in Kylián's work today. Stepping Stones is an enigmatic piece which at the same time possesses enormous lucidity, as a critic of the Stuttgarter Zeitung wrote after the premiere, adding wistfully: "If only such masterly, contemporary choreographers were billed more often".