meny mobile

Cullberg Ballet repertoire 2015

Cullberg Ballet’s new artistic director Gabriel Smeets presents his first repertoire for the company this spring. First up are two new works, bringing together in the double bill Highlights two of the dance world’s currently most interesting contemporary choreographers American Trajal Harrell and European Eszter Salamon. Highlights will have its world premiere at Dansstationen in Malmö 19 March. The coming autumn, American choreographer Deborah Hay together with composer Laurie Anderson create a new work for 21 dancers. Figure a Sea will have its world premiere at Dansens Hus in Stockholm 25 September. And this summer, Brasilian choreographer and dancer Cristian Duarte creates a solo to music created on theremin by composer Tom Monteiro. Premiere in November 2015.

“Cullberg Ballet will present a repertoire of dance that matters by choreographers and dancers who are rooted in the 21th century and are well aware of the specific qualities of the art form dance. I am very proud and curious on how the audience will respond,” says Gabriel Smeets, artistic director.

Cullberg Ballet premieres 2015:

The Return of the Modern Dance by Trajal Harrell (20 minutes)
Reproduction (2015) by Eszter Salamon (60 minutes)

In the history of humanity there has always been an ongoing communication between the one who exposes the body and the one who watches the body. The gaze of the audience is seduced, triggered, directed and manipulated by choreographers. Who is controlling whom: the one who exposes or the one who watches?

Trajal Harrell who works at the interface between contemporary dance and the foundations of voguing tours around the world and several of his works have been selected as best dance works by Time Out New York. For Cullberg Ballet, he creates an exclusive new work for six dancers.

Eszter Salamon is active as both dancer and choreographer and her works appear frequently in theatres and venues in Europe, the US and in Asia. For Cullberg Ballet, she will recreate her work Reproduction from 2004 for eight dancers.

“Both Trajal Harrell and Eszter Salamon are questioning the laws of the theatre and how the audience’s gaze directs the way we perceive bodies on stage. Both choreographers are interested in how bodies are presented in the entertainment and marketing industry, working with different dance styles and approaches. The two performances challenge our views on gender, transformation and identity. Two performances for young adults and everyone else,” says Gabriel Smeets.

A series of pre- and after talks together with workshops for youngsters on gender will be connected to the performances.

Highlights will be presented at Dansstationen in Malmö 19-20 March, Skövde stadsteater 14 April, Dansens Hus, small stage, Stockholm 22-23, 25-26 May and at Holland Festival in Amsterdam 19-21 June. Reproduction (2015) will be presented within the frame of the festival Liaison at Kulturhuset Stadsteatern, Stockholm 11-12 April, curated by choreographer Jefta van Dinther.

Figure a Sea (60 minutes)
Choreography Deborah Hay
Sound score Laurie Anderson

Choreographer Deborah Hay creates a new piece; Figure a Sea in collaboration with composer/musician Laurie Anderson. 21 dancers perform in the piece, Cullberg Ballet’s 16 with an additional five guest dancers. Figure a Sea is a large group dance, a landscape in which human voice and activity combine to create a grand and emotional silence within the theater. How is it possible to sustain that silence in the hearts and minds of the performers and audiences alike?

“Figure a Sea is a meditation on seeing. Seeing music, fleeting incidences, synchronicities, copious input points, collectivity, surprise. It is a space for self-reflection: for seeing oneself seeing”, says Deborah Hay on her new work for Cullberg Ballet.

American icon dancer, choreographer and author Deborah Hay was born 1941 in Brooklyn. Hay belongs to a generation of choreographers who were at the base of Judson Church Movement in New York in the 1960’s where daily life movements became part of the choreography. This was a change in the history of dance. The group, known as the Judson Dance Theatre, became one of the most radical and explosive postmodern 20th century art movements. Hay focused on large scale dance projects, and later almost exclusively on rarified and enigmatic solo dances based on her new experimental choreographic method. She has also choreographed a duet for herself and Mikhail Baryshnikov, Single Duet in 2000. During her long career, she has been awarded several times.

American composer and musician Laurie Anderson started her career as a sculptor and performance artist. She is a pioneer in electronic music with popular as well as art music among her creations. She has collaborated with William Burroughs, Peter Gabriel and Lou Reed, among many others.

Against the Current, Glow (working title) (30 minutes)
Choreography Cristian Duarte
Music Tom Monteiro

Brasilian dancer and choreographer Cristian Duarte will create a solo for the Cullberg Ballet dancers Anna Pehrsson, Samuel Draper, Agnieszka Dlugoszewska and Daniel Sjökvists. Duarte trained in São Paulo with Estúdio and Cia. Nova Dança (1994-2000) and he graduated from P.A.R.T.S. (Performing Arts, Research and Training Studios) in Brussels 2002. Since then he’s been developing his own projects and collaborating with artists from Brazil and abroad, and he teaches at DOCH (University of Dance and Circus) in Stockholm. His last creations include, The Hot One Hundred Choreographers (2011), that has toured the world, and Biomashup (2014)

Tour spring 2015
During the spring, Cullberg Ballet will tour in Sweden and abroad. The final performance of Benoît Lachambre’s success JJ’s voices, based on music by Janis Joplin, will be presented at the island of Gotland in Sweden, 14 March. Jefta van Dinther’s Plateau Effect will be presented in Brussels 6-7 March and in Bregenz, Austria 24 April. 11th Floor by Edouard Lock will tour to Sao Paolo and Rio de Janeiro in Brasil 7-9 May.

Co-production for children 10-12 years old
Choreographer Sebastian Matthias will create a new work for children aged 10-12 years. Four dancers and one musician participate in Matthias first creation for Cullberg Ballet in collaboration with Riksteatern (The Swedish National Touring Theatre) Intergalactic Underwater Palace that will tour to schools in Sweden. Sebastian Matthias is educated at Juilliard in New York. His work focuses on improvisation developed together with the dancers. Intergalactic Underwater Palace will have its premiere in September 2015.


Cullberg Ballet has performed all over the world and is an important element in the international presentation of Swedish culture. The company also engages in national outreach through its tours within Sweden. The company collaborates with a variety of national and international choreographers and performing artists who create works for large as well as small stages. Cullberg Ballet’s activities encompass projects and productions including site specific appearances and collaboration with dance training programs. Cullberg Ballet was founded by Birgit Cullberg in 1967 under the auspices of Riksteatern. The company currently has 16 dancers from nearly as many countries. Since its inception, the stage personalities and technical strength of its dancers have been Cullberg Ballet’s defining characteristics. Gabriel Smeets is the company’s artistic director. Cullberg Ballet is part of Riksteatern, Sweden’s National Touring Theatre.