An architectural and choreographic project
Born from collaboration between the Théâtre de Verdure of Montreal and choreographer Marie Béland, architectural and choreographic project Les Précédents was first created for the Parc La Fontaine. The performance integrates dancers into the landscape of a public area and into the actions of passers-by. Inspired by the moveable and immobile, by permanence and the ephemeral, the interpreters help us to see the space of this bustling public park with new perspective.
Les Précédents is a performance of variable duration suitable for any outdoor context. Built as a circuit, the piece was designed to blend into chaotic urban environments. By its contemplative character, it acts as a lull in the heart of the incessant whirlwind of human activity.
We are using the term “choreographic architecture” to describe this work. Marie Béland redevelops Les Précédents in total intimacy with the place that receives it. The dancers embrace the space or work in counterpoint with the landscape (street lines, tree positions, use of paths, stairs, etc.). They also integrate the movement of passers-by into the choreography, tracing the movements and pathways of bodies. People who cross the performance space at that time, without necessarily realizing it, become dancers for a few seconds. These different data constitute «precedents» or starting-points from which the dancers react to their environment. The same instruction informs the sound score. The musician-performer uses a megaphone to reproduce a mixture of sound fragments heard around him and sound references that evoke other places familiar to us (the intercom of a grocery store, or the subway, or the music of an elevator, etc.).
Les Précédents is therefore a series of games on the notion of daily space.
The experience can be continued with workshops open to the public where all can take part in Les Précédents by performing the piece in the company of the dancers.
Since its creation, the project has been presented over 40 times.
Conception : Marie Béland
Interpreters in 2021 : in rotation Rodrigo Alvarenga, Zoey Gauld, Simon-Xavier Lefebvre, Alexia Martel, Abe Simon Mijnheer, Marilyne St-Sauveur, Anne Thériault, Andrew Turner
Interpreters for the creative process : Isabelle Arcand, Amélie Bédard-Gagnon, Geneviève Gauvreau, Hugo Gravel, Simon-Xavier Lefebvre, Anne Thériault.
Artistic advisor for the creative process : Katya Montaignac
Booking : Art Circulation
Premiere : July 9th, 2008, Théâtre de verdure, Parc Lafontaine, Montréal
2021 edition at Parc Jean-Duceppe, Montréal (Photos © Dimitri Haddad)
2020 edition at Faubourg Boisbriand, Ville de Boisbriand (Photos © Claudia Chan Tak)
2009 edition at Parc LaFontaine (Théâtre de Verdure)
Large audience workshop given during the shows (2009)
2008 edition at l’Esplanade de la Place-des-Arts (in the context of The Art (prononcez dehors) from La 2e Porte à Gauche)
2008 edition at Parc LaFontaine (Théâtre de Verdure)