And we, the bones, become ashes and powder

Simone Dompeyre Artistic Director

In the darkness of the early night, many of them, standing up, were waiting for a ceremony... no noise, when a young woman in her bubble-wrapped plastic and lace skirt made of hanging paper, wearing large rangers shoes, began her distribution, hands open with the same folded little papers. They hid words that were soon heard, in two voices, those of the two artists - in photography, sound, video, installation - Fabrice Leroux and - in dance - Cedranna, some of them could be heard on the wall that had become a big screen. They say "universal" and "memory", "face" and "wick", "vital" and "erasure", "distant" and "dreary" but also "warmth" and "coldness", "setback" and "birth", "bloom" and "decay". The words come up again in the last movement; they list the values attributed to ashes, without rejecting their antinomy, or accepting it: "fall, loss, surrender" but "embrace, love, awakening".

Having scattered the last of her messages on the ground, she walks toward a wooden platform covered with grey dust, the ash that Villon’s verse brings back to our bodies after life... Now in a simple tunic whose drapes were usually worn by those statues of young women / sleeping goddesses or lying goddesses, she dances. The image is repeated in various dimensions, two monitors off stage and on this one enclose the body on their small screen, the large dimension on the wall exalts its delicacy, sometimes in the overlap of its remanence and gives it space and on the wood, the body advances, turns slowly, decomposes its steps, glissando... the body straightens up more strongly and throws, throws, propels or drops the ash that the hands pick up when it does not mix it - then on the wall, a zenith dive discovers the figures thus drawn

Certainly, some gestures lead to rituals of mourning and penance, and to the biblical works; for example, it is already the offended woman who is found guilty, in the Second Book of Samuel Tamar, daughter of David, spread ashes on her head and tore off her princess coat because her brother Ammon had raped her. The performance does not breathe such cruelty, it raises dust that has lost all heaviness and ugliness. She keeps in her walk this fire that smoulders under the ashes.

The dance is not sad, it represents this passage towards a state, light, filled wit harmony... a floating moment; it takes the place of other ERRING SHADOWS... And Barber’s score grants itself this moment of grace, this full moment, this moment of beauty. An elegy to a death that would neither be macabre,
nor horrible that calls for funeral practices mixing ashes with food for the living - in South America - making Buddha statues by mixing them with clay - in Tibet-fertilizing the fields with it.

If the title is poetry by Villon, very far from his hangings, including "Magpies, crows have dug out our eyes And pulled out our beards and eyebrows.", the tone of the work opens a new testament of Orpheus, in which the poet would have become a dancer, where like the phoenix, he comes to life by his very combustion. The
Poet crosses the mirror, the dancer is attracted by the reflection.

This ash flows like water when she rubs her body, fills her face with it; it floats like air when she breathes it, throws it away; it bears witness to fire when the dancer approaches this column of light so narrow that it echoes from doors to another world. The dancer moves forward, backwards, returns to it caught up in the light that makes her enlightened... That makes her diaphanous. The ash keeps track of what human life was... What the rose foreshadowed, which, on the screen, preceded Cedranna.

Rose and Eros, rose and memory, traces of life; they disperse in the wind and spread over the earth or dissolve in water, ephemeral like the flower, ephemeral like this performance in the darkness of the night "the sweet night that walks".

Simone Dompeyre Artistic Director of the Festival TRAVERSE VIDEO

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The performance takes place on a 4x3 m rectangle covered with a layer of ashes.
A single source of light, like a door (A double vertical neon light)
Dance with this element, tame it, without fear, just for a moment when the body surrenders to offer its last dance.
Between strength and fragility, the life impulse of the body, beauty and fatality.

Performance (Duration : 9-13min)
Music Samuel Barber Adagio For Strings
St Sulpice Chapel. Istres. 2015