O Canto do Cisne (Swan Song) - recreation

"O Canto do Cisne" was one of the last pieces danced by Ballet Gulbenkian before its extinction. Challenged by Companhia Nacional de Bailado (National Ballet of Portugal), the choreographer revisits her piece together with the original artistic team.

Based on the theme launched at the time, “The fascination of distant worlds”, Clara Andermatt seeks the unknown through mystery and surprise towards what is probably most enigmatic in everything we do not know: death. Formally, the choreographer chooses Camille Saint-Saens's "The Death of the Swan" as a starting point, asking the music composer Vítor Rua to create variations on the original theme.

Andermatt approaches death not as the end, but as the beginning of the future it contains, plunging into metamorphosis and its transforming power. It is this moment that the choreographer identifies as the swan song. The present ends up revealing itself as a continuous realization that it is both past and future, because everything is in constant change. An idea that Clara Andermatt emphasizes by quoting Peggy Phelan:

“When you think you've found a way to love, to observe or to remember someone, everything has changed.”


Choreography and direction: Clara Andermatt | Artistic consultant: Amélia Bentes | Choreographer's assistant: Barbara Griggi | Music: Vitor Rua | Lighting designer and scenic space: Manuel Abrantes (from the original design by Rui Horta) | Costume designer: Aleksandar Protic | CNB rehearsal coordinator: Tom Colin | Performance: Companhia Nacional de Bailado - National Ballet of Portugal (Almudena Maldonado, Anyah Siddall, Inês Ferrer, Leonor de Jesus, Patrícia Main, Tatiana Grenkova, Dylan Waddell, Francisco Couto, Francisco Sebastião, Gonçalo Andrade, João Costa, Miguel Ramalho, Miguel Esteves, Tiago Amaral) | Production support: Companhia Clara Andermatt (Helena Menino, Pedro Pestana) | Special thanks to: Jonas & Lander, Mark Haim, Centro de Artes de Marvila

Photos by CNB / Hugo David

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