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À Corps suspendus

À Corps suspendus

A fascinating story of a dance master and his student at the time of Louis IV.

The piece tells a story of a dance master and his talented girl student whom he, within the dance classes, initiates to the mysteries of perfect dance art. A pre-dominant subject of the piece is harmony between arts: music, theatre, and dance – the attention is drawn to each of the three genres equally. The story is in fact a journey round the cultural map of Europe around the turn of the 17th century. As such it enables the spectator to discover the beauty of major artistic disci-plines, the handling of court dances of the time as well as the Neapolitan tarantella or Madrid fandango. The peak consists of the performance of Passacaille d´Armide, the queen of all dances.

A delicate director’s approach of Jean-Denis Monory opens space for all aspects of the story. The spectators turn into direct witnesses not only of court art but also of a life story of a woman who, on her quest for artistic education, be-comes the initiator of changes in social rules of the time. The texts as well as the story itself are inspired by authentic writings and testimonies of dance teachers of the time. The characters´ emotions as well as their language are palpable and contemporary. The music functions as a medium for both the characters and the richness of diverse cultural influences. An impressive choreography created by Gudrun Skamletz draws from dance notations of the time but at the same time it rewraps music impulses into perfect symphony of natural movement and baroque forms.

A Corps suspendus was premiered on July 23rd, 2008, at Troja castle in Prague within the international festival of ancient music Letní slavnosti staré hudby.



Gudrun Skamletz – choreography / dancer
Jean-Denis Monory – stage director / actor
Bastien Ossart – libretto and assistant of the director
Bastien Ossart – narrator
Chantal Rousseau – costume design

Jana Semerádová – artistic director