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What a classic is and how it performs in (our) time. Paul McCarthy, Rocky, 1976

Spreafico Eckly

Friday 11th November 9 p.m., VERK

The performance has limited capacity

About the performance

“What a classic is and how it performs in (our) time. Paul McCarthy, Rocky, 1976” is a long title for a short piece that wants to raise questions on how the concept of classic could be applied to a structurally ephemeral form of art such as performance. The word “classic” has several meanings, it can refer to the greek roman culture (the classics), to romantic music (classical music) or to contemporary cinema (a classic of the 90s), but it always refers to a common patrimony, a sort of public space of culture. What happens to a performance in the moment it becomes a classic? Can be performance be considered as public space of culture? How does this condition affects our relation to it? Facing the reasons of reproducing old performances, Spreafico Eckly collaborates this time with dancer and choreographer Sergiu Matis to the re- enactment of Paul McCarthy’s video Rocky. Originally, the video was a provocative parody of the idea of man proposed by the homonymous film and an answer to the performance scene of its time based on staging real, and often dangerous, situations. Our piece though, focusing on its rhythmic composition, treats it as a piece of classical music or as a classical ballet. We transcribed and translated in a new score its random movements in order to be able to re-produce them as a choreography. What a classic is and how it performs in (our) time. Paul McCarthy, Rocky, 1976 is both an academic work as well as a rough, provocative performance. On one hand, the work is a ruder, straighter, more aggressive version of the original video thanks to its “live” quality, on the other hand it will loose its original spontaneity, by being a rigorous 1:1 copy of the original movements.

Not suited for children, contains nudity.

Duration: 1hr 30min

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Photo: Spreafico Eckly


Direction: Andrea Spreafico With: Sergiu Matis and Andrea Spreafico Movement notation : Caroline Eckly and Sergiu Matis Direction assistance : Caroline Eckly Development advisers : Anne-Cécile Sibué-Birkeland (Cassiopee Office), Cameron MacLeod, Peter Wendl Photography of Giuseppina Cassetta by Luca Di Giorgio Co-Production: BIT Teatergarasjen (Bergen), 4+4 Days in Motion (Prague) Supported by Norwegian Art Council, Bergen Kommune Production: Spreafico Eckly

About the cast

Spreafico Eckly is a performance company based on the collaboration between Caroline Eckly and Andrea Spreafico. The company produces work that merges the languages of its hybrid professional background (she as dancer, he as concept artist and historian of philosophy). The work focuses both on the conceptual and the physical know how. Referring to a strongly trained common taste we try to structure and give form to conceptual problems that are relevant in the contemporary debate. The ambition underpinning the company hybrid identity is to overcome any genre definition by letting the concept of each individual piece define the most relevant/efficient media and the best collaborators for its expression.

Caroline Eckly studied classical dance at the Conservatoire de Lyon. She first worked as a free lancer in France, she then moved to Germany where she danced at the Tanzteater Nürnberg (2002 -2008) and since 2008 she is a member of Carte Blanche, the Norwegian national company for contemporary dance. During her carrier she has been part of the creation process of several choreographers such as Sharon Eyal, Arco Renz, Heine Avsdal, Blanca Li, Ina Christel Johannessen, Rui Horta, Tero Saarinen, Russel Maliphant.
Andrea Spreafico studied philosophy in Bologna and Reims (PhD in 2006) and did a post graduate study in Art and Public Space at the Academy of Fine Arts in Nürnberg (2008). He has been a researcher at the University of Bologna (2008-2010) and since 2011 he is a teacher of participatory approaches to urbanism and concept development at the Bergen School of Architecture.

Sergiu Matis started his professional career as a dancer at Tanztheater Nürnberg where, amongst others, he worked with Daniela Kurz, Stijn Celis, Jo Strømgren, Rodolfo Leoni, Rui Horta, Andre Gingras, Jorma Elo. Since 2008 Sergiu Matis lives in Berlin, working with Colette Sadler, Yossi Berg, Philip Bergmann, Daniel Kok, Jeeae Lim, and joined the company Sasha Waltz & Guests from 2008 till today. In February 2014 he graduated an MA in Solo/Dance/ Authorship (SODA) at the HZT Berlin and was awarded with the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes and the Life Long Burning Grant. His choreographic work includes: Human Nature (2001), 89.Grenzenlos (2005), Ending-dong (2008), doom room (2011), Duet (2011), Keep It Real (2013), Fake It (2014), Petrushka (2014) and Explicit Content (2015).