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WIM VANDEKEYBUS BIOGRAPHY

CND ARCHIVE REPERTOIRE 90/11. GUEST CHOREOGRAPHERS

Win VandekeybusAfter having worked for two years with Jan Fabre, he created his own working structure Última Vez in 1987. His first performance What the Body Does Not Remember (1987) was soon being presented on international stages. In 1988, Wim Vandekeybus received the Bessie Award in New York for this production, which was credited “a brutal confrontation of dance and music: the dangerous, combative landscape of What the Body Does Not Remember.”

Vandekeybus then created Les porteuses de mauvaises nouvelles (1989), The Weight of a Hand (1990) and Immer das Selbe gelogen (1991). Her Body Doesn’t Fit her Soul followed in 1993. For this production Wim Vandekeybus collaborated with non-seeing dancers for the first time. The short film Elba and Federico, also directed by Wim Vandekeybus, was part of the performance. From this moment onwards film became a constant value in Vandekeybus’ work. 

A film - shot in Morocco - and short stories by Paul Bowles and Milorad Pavic, constituted the theme for Mountains Made of Barking (1994). Wim Vandekeybus later created, among others, Bereft of a Blissful Union (1996) -a large-scale piece which brought together on stage twelve dancers and twelve musicians, and incorporated film and acting sequences, 7 for a Secret never to be told (1997), In Spite of Wishing and Wanting (1999) -incorporating the short film The Last Wordsbased on two surrealist short-stories by Julio Cortázar-, and “Inasmuch as Life is borrowed...” (2000). For Scratching the Inner Fields (2001) Vandekeybus collaborated with the Flemish author Peter Verhelst, a collaboration that was continued for Blush (2002) and Sonic Boom, a co-production with the Dutch theatre company Toneelgroep Amsterdam (2003). PUUR (2005), a performance with texts by the Dutch author P.F. 

Thomése and incorporating film fragments, was presented in open-air at several occasions amongst which in the beautiful setting of de Quarry of Boulbon during the Festival d’Avignon. To celebrate the twentieth anniversary of his company Última Vez, Wim Vandekeybus created Spiegel (2006), a composed evening with remarkable scenes from the work of the company. Also in September 2006 premièred Nighshade, a project for which the production house Victoria invited seven icons of the contemporary performing arts – amongst whom Wim Vandekeybus - to choreograph a striptease act for a professional striptease dancer. In November 2006 premièred Quiebro, a guest choreography for Compañía Nacional de Danza in Madrid. Besides the short films and film & video fragments that are part of his performances, Vandekeybus has also directed several video adaptations of his dance productions: Roseland (1990), La Mentira (1992), In Spite of Wishing and Wanting (2002) and more recently Blush (2005). His short films as well as these dance films are also much acclaimed in the art and short film circuit.