Monika Jašinskaitė
www.kamane.lt, 2013-03-18

In brief: Kaunas dance theatre Aura presented the project “1863” in the Big Hall of Kaunas National Drama Theatre on March 11 and directed the imagination of the spectator to Lithuania 150 years ago.

The project consisted of two parts: the video film created by Mindaugas Arlinskas and the dance performance of the Hungarian choreographer Ferenc Feher. The film introduced the audience to the events and details of the rebellion of 1863.

The film does not present any actual information but creates an emotional impact. No word of a story teller resounds, and the verbal information is rendered through notes: “The rebellion of 1863 is the fight for Lithuania as it was realised at that time. It was a different Lithuania.” “321 battle took place in the territory of Lithuania during one and a half year of rebellion.”

Under the impact of elements of the video film (views, music, text), the spectator is taken to the fictitious world, in which laws of associations prevail. When the spectator is ready, the second part of the project – the dance performance starts. Moves of dancers repeat the information presented in the film and also this information gives some particularity to moves of dancers and enables the audience to create the story in their imagination themselves.

Still, the interpretation about the Lithuanian and Polish rebellion against the rule of Tsar staged by two Hungarians – choreographer F. Feher and music author David Kovacsovics – is rather abstract. The choreographic fabric is based on the endless motif of fight. The music sets the intensive rhythm of the performance and views formed by dancers form a kind of subconscious flow.

The historical theme in modern Lithuanian dance and in Lithuanian contemporary art in general is rare and unusual. However, the theatre stage is not History Channel. Aura dancers, M.Arlinskas and  F.Feher do not try to base their project only on historical facts and direct symbols. The imagination of the spectator is wakened up in the performance “1863”, the audience is encouraged to discover, experience, realise and note various links itself.

No doubt, historians will see one thing while physics another in the performance. Still, is it bad?

Photos by Tomas Jundulas

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