4+4 Days In Motion has 22nd edition

The barracks in Karlín will be one of this year's venues

The international festival of contemporary art 4+4 Days in Motion brings current theater and dance projects to Prague. This year's 22nd edition of the festival takes place Oct. 6 to 14.

Every year, the festival includes disused or empty buildings. This year the festival will take over part of the abandoned Karlín Barracks (Kasárna Karlín). Other venues include Archa, Ponec, Alfred ve dvoře and Studio Alta.

The barracks will host a large-scale exhibition of called Amiwhatiamthinkingabout. It consists of objects, paintings, or installations by 40 artists, plus short films, workshops, guided tours of Karlín, discussions, a “festival school,” and a café and bar.

The barracks will also present the premieres of numerous site-specific theater projects, including new works by Vosto5 and the Spitfire Company, director Jan Nebeský’s opera Diary of a Thief, the premiere of René Levínský’s An Introduction to Working with Computers, a documentary film by Kristýna Lhotáková and Ladislav Soukup, and many other, primarily domestic, projects. Not all of the events are English-friendly.

This year, the foreign program at Archa, Ponec, and Alfred ve dvoře is dominated by artists born or working outside the European continent. These artists are pioneers in modern dance, theater, and music in countries such as Angola, Algeria, Morocco, and the Ivory Coast.

Some pieces explore taboos, social customs, and traditions, with a view toward the legacy of colonialism.

In Respectable Thief, Angolan multimedia artist Nástio Mosquito combines music, poetry, video, and text with a critique of stereotypes in Western culture. In her visually interactive work Quartiers Libres, Ivory Coast choreographer and dancer Nadia Beugré explores questions of forbidden places and the freedom of movement. And in En Alerte, Moroccan choreographer Taoufiq Izeddiou’s recollections of a Sufi ritual are mixed with contemporary Arabic poetry. 

A second group of foreign works has visual performances based on the use of sound or music. In her most recent work, Personal Symphonic Moment, Finnish choreographer and musician Elina Pirinen dissects Shostakovich’s Leningrad Symphony.

North America is represented by Myriam Bleau from Montreal and Penny Arcade from New York. In her audiovisual performance autopsy.glass, composer and multimedia artist Myriam Bleau experiment with the potential of wine glasses.

New York-based avant-garde artist and former Andy Warhol collaborator, Penny Arcade, has a musical show called Longing Lasts Longer, It is a mix of rock ’n’ roll with a parody of one-man shows and personal recollections of 40 years in the world of popular culture. It has been seen in 22 cities.

Algerian-born Swiss choreographer Philippe Saire's experimental work Vacuum combines movement with the visual arts: two neon tubes create the illusion of an empty space where the two dancers’ bodies seem to float in the air.

The Dakh Daughters Band grew out of the Kyiv-based Dakh experimental theater, a leading symbol of the struggle for democracy in Ukraine. The band’s cabaret-style performances mix elements of punk, rock, and rap with Ukrainian folk music.

Ukraine is also represented in a unique theater-documentary. After more than 10 years, the festival welcomes back the original Belgian group Berlin with their multimedia performance Zvizdal (Chernobyl – So Far, So Close). This documentary film looks at the life of an elderly couple who refused to leave their home after the disaster at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, and who live and work their fields in complete isolation in the forbidden zone.

For more information visit ctyridny.cz/en or www.facebook.com/festival4dny

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