“The Ninth“ is a gallop through Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, racing between absolutism and socialism, defeatism and optimism, populism to vulgarism, humanism to barbarism.
The performance runs through the entire sound landscape of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, broadly known as a “masterpiece of the Western civilization”, “giant and complex”, “sublime”. And in the middle of this “striking example of human spirit” stay the artists – naked and suspicious, not complex but reduced. Nothing triumphant about them, but looking for a connection with The Animal.
The Ninth is based on Giorgio Agamben’s reflection on humanism as an anthropological machine. In his book “The Open Man and Animal” Giorgio Agamben addresses the boundaries between man and animal, and questions the logic of Western civilization, which justifies the procedure of “humanization of man” in the first place on a systematic suspension of animal. Man is defined only in the difference from the Animal. Animal slowly fades away, and in the identity of modern individual grows bigger and bigger emptiness, which we try to fill up with different ideologies. In this way civilization becomes increasingly heavy ideological baggage, an individual gradually collapses under the burden of their imperatives. Or, as Peter Sloterdijk says: “The taming of man has failed… Civilisation’s potential for barbarism is growing; the everyday bestialisation of man is on the increase.”
Via Negativa is a Slovenian experimental platform for contemporary performing arts. Focused on exploring different performative strategies and practices, the platform also organizes annual workshops. It was founded in 2002 and its concept is based on the simple elements on the stage as reinforcing the relationship between performer and spectator – with all the resulting perspectives, expectations, judgements, stereotypes, prejudices. Via Negativa’s portfolio includes theatre and dance pieces as well as lecture-performances, video works, radical body practices, gallery projects, books, etc.
The project is supported by the City of Ljubljana and the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland.
The international programme of the festival for contemporary dance and performance “Antistatic” 2023 is organised by the “Brain Store Project” Foundation and “Nomad Dance Academy Bulgaria”, with the financial support of the Ministry of Culture, National Culture Fund under the “Program for Recovery and Development of Private Cultural Organizations”, Goethe-Institut Bulgaria, Sofia Municipality – Calendar of Cultural Events and Polish Institute in Sofia, and in partnership with RCCA “Topocentrala” and “Derida” Stage.