Choreographer: Hannah Ma
Company: hannahmadance/ The People United
Assistance: Christin Braband
Music : Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Fredric Chopin
Music Adaption: Hannah Ma
Dance / Co-creation: Christin Braband, Sergio Mel, Valetina Zappa, Saeed Hani, Yuta Ishikawa
Bringing historical ballets back to a contemporary life and combining both tradition and innovation has made Hannah Ma’s productions unique.
Sylphides is a light-hearted, ironic, poetic interpretation of the romantic ballet Les Sylphides. German-Chinese choreographer Hannah Ma and her company, the People United, a transcultural mix of international dancers, reflect on our current shifts of gender, identities and cultural heritage with the construct of ‘home’ as starting point.
Described as a ‘romantic reverie’, Les Sylphides was the first non-narrative ballet – as such, the first ‘contemporary ballet’. Hannah Ma refers both to the history of ballet and to Frédéric Chopin’s biography in this piece.
Entering the space of the ‘other side’ – the Romantic ideal of the place and entities beyond our real world – the dancers execute the embodiment of lightness and enlightenment, as well as pointing to our desire to escape our manifested bodies to enter eternity. Combined with Chopin’s piano music, the audience is invited to a ‘spiritual ballet of the 21st century’.
Hannah Ma has a classical ballet background, and is well known for her ‘recreated ballets’, such as The Nutcracker and Swan Lake. Her 2017 project H.E.R.O.E.S is considered a ‘best practice project’ by UNESCO, Germany.