Michael Clark Company
“come, been and gone”
October 11-12, 2014 Sat at 8pm; Sun at 3pm
Part of Irvine Barclay Theatre’s 2014-2015 Contemporary Dance Series
from London, England
An evening full of wit and style, featuring the music of David Bowie and Iggy Pop.
“Rock is my rock. It has been vital to me at a personal level; it has shaped me as an individual as well as an artist.”
Michael Clark chose to become a choreographer believing that actions speak louder than words. He creates work which combines his classical integrity with a more complex, contemporary sensibility, embracing virtue and vice, abandon and control, grace and embarrassment. He is renowned for his legendary collaborations with bands, fashion designers and visual artists including Wire, Bodymap, Leigh Bowery, Trojan and Sarah Lucas.
Choreographer: Michael Clark
Lighting Designer: Charles Atlas
Costumes: Stevie Stewart, Michael Clark
Note: This piece contains a segment that includes brief nudity
REVIEWS & FEATURES
"A thunderous electrifying evening...Don't expect to be transported; expect to be jolted out of your seats." - British Theatre Guide
"…an outrageously gorgeous piece of modern dance." - The Observer
“The precision of these dances seems to reach right off the stage.” -The Independent
The first concert of his own choreography was in 1982 at London’s Riverside Studios, where he became resident choreographer. By 1984, Clark had made 16 original pieces. Michael Clark and Company was launched in 1984. The company was an immediate success and toured internationally. During this time, Clark collaborated with fashion designers Bodymap, artists Leigh Bowery and Trojan, as well as The Fall, Laibach, and Wire.
Clark’s commissions for major dance companies include the G.R.C.O.P., The Paris Opera, Scottish Ballet, London Festival Ballet, Ballet Rambert, Phoenix Dance Company and the Deutsche Oper Berlin. Clark has produced considerable work for film and video, including Hail the New Puritan (1984) and Because We Must (1989) with Charles Atlas. He also choreographed and danced the role of Caliban in Peter Greenaway’s Prospero’s Books (1991). After three years of commissions and solo work, he created the original version of Mmm... (1992) and O (1994). In 1998, he presented a new full-length work, current/SEE, in collaboration with Susan Stenger, Simon Pearson, Big Bottom and Hussein Chalayan, which became the subject of a BBC documentary, The Late Michael Clark, directed by Sophie Fiennes.
Before and After: The Fall (2001) was Clark’s first major collaboration with the visual artist Sarah Lucas. In 2003, Clark created the first Satie Stud for William Trevitt of George Piper Dances; produced an evening entitled Would, Should, Can, Did for the Barbican Theatre in London; and choreographed a solo for Mikhail Baryshnikov. In the same year, OH MY GODDESS opened London Dance Umbrella’s 25th anniversary season. In 2004, Rambert Dance Company revived SWAMP, which received the Olivier Award for Best New Dance Production.
In 2005, Michael Clark became an Artistic Associate of the Barbican Centre, London and embarked on the Stravinsky Project, a three-year project that produced a trilogy of works using seminal dance scores by Igor Stravinsky. He radically reworked O and Mmm... for this project; and in 2007, he premiered the final part of the trilogy, I Do. The Stravinsky Project had its U.S. premiere at the Lincoln Center, New York in June 2008. In June 2009, Clark premiered come, been and gone at La Biennale di Venezia. This work has toured nationally and internationally for the past five years to great critical acclaim, including performances at the Edinburgh Internal Festival, the Barbican, London and the Melbourne International Arts Festival. In 2012, a new theatrical work premiered at the Barbican, London, amongst other international venues; and in 2013, this work was extended into the triple bill, animal / vegetable / mineral. It has been presented at The Lowry, again at the Barbican, and at the Norfolk & Norwich Festival in England. The show has also toured Scotland, Germany, Belgium and Finland.
Clark has also undertaken several large-scale projects in non-theatre spaces, including museums and galleries. In 2010, the company spent the summer in residence at Tate Modern, London in preparation for a new, large-scale performance commission for the Turbine Hall. The production, th, premiered in June 2011; and in 2012, Michael Clark presented WHO’S ZOO?, a specially commissioned piece for the Whitney Biennial in New York as well as The Barrowlands Project in Glasgow, part of the London 2012 Festival.
In 2011, Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen conferred on Michael Clark an honorary degree of Doctor of Arts (Hon DArt) in recognition of his distinguished career in the field of choreography and dance; the first monograph on Michael Clark, celebrating the whole of his career to date, from the late 70s to the present, was published by Violette Editions. Clark was awarded a CBE for services to dance in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in June 2014.
Hailed as “British dance’s true iconoclast,” Michael Clark is a defining cultural figure. Since emerging in the 1980s as a prodigy at London’s Royal Ballet School, he has remained at the forefront of innovation in dance, collaborating with – among others – such compelling artists as Sarah Lucas, Leigh Bowery, Peter Doig and Charles Atlas; and musicians Mark E. Smith, Wire, Scritti Politti and Relaxed Muscle.
From the outset, Michael Clark’s performances have been marked by a mixture of technical rigor, experimentation, and intense and fine-tuned choreography, intersecting with elements of punk, Dada, pop and rock. His productions repeatedly break new ground, provoking and electrifying audiences. As The Guardian noted of a recent performance at the Barbican, London: “Throughout the evening, the dancers’ prodigious command and affectless efficiency make them look superhuman.”
Michael Clark founded his own company in 1984. It has since toured worldwide and performed at leading houses in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia, as well as on its home stage at the Barbican, where it has been a resident company since 2005. Michael Clark Company has also introduced dance to new audiences by performing at unorthodox venues, including the legendary Barrowland Ballroom in Glasgow, the Turbine Hall at Tate Modern in London and at the Whitney Biennial 2012 in New York, where the company occupied an entire floor for four weeks; and through Clark’s collaborations with leading artists, fashion designers and musicians.