Death and the Maiden / Transfigured Night



"Schiele's drawings and aquarelles are powerful portrayals, as is Goldin's expression in his own dance language.... 'Transfigured Night' is a somnambulistic duet between two lovers, inspired by Edgar Allan Poe's last poem, 'Annabel Lee'. Goldin finds a convincing, weightless dance language that transports feeling without being obtrusive. Daniel Condamines lies asleep in a rocking chair. As if searching for sweet memories, he stands up and rummages the drawers of a dressing table. For a fraction of a second, as if airing a secret, he reveals his naked shoulder under his jacket. His beloved, she also a sleep-dancer, finally emerges from a cupboard, her long blond her covering her face like a veil. The two meet like sleepwalkers, finding each other for brief moments as though by chance. Propelled into their good luck by the yearning, euphoric music, they whirl through a sea of paper. This work is a jewel full of magic, that distantly calls Mats Ek to mind. The audience applauded the company enthusiastically."

Bettina Trouwborst, Süddeutsche Zeitung, 2 December 2002

"The interaction of dancers and musicians produces fascinating theatre"

Harald Suerland, Westfälische Nachrichten, 2 December 2002

"Especially the Schubert choreography before the interval was an enthusiastically applauded triumph. It shows Goldin from an unusual side: one has rarely experienced him in such classical mood, so intent on simplicity and pure dance. During the movements of the quartet, the dancers – four "Maidens" and four "Deaths" – approach one another like loving couples. No props and no scenery distract from the play of the attracting and repelling bodies. At the same time, there is strict harmony of movements, a flowing elegance that should satisfy even the most dogmatic ballet fan: When the women in their pale dresses form a row, they sometimes appear against the blue background like an estranged quotation from "Swan Lake". But for all its beauty, this music is about dying and death, and threatening undertones are also present in Goldin's work. Leitmotiv-like, gestures recur in the erotic games that make the danger tangible: sometimes, they all must press their hands to their mouths to suppress a cry; in most ungentlemanly manner, the men drag the women across the stage by their hair. And when, finally, the "Deaths" crawl to the women on their bellies, they look like crocodiles on the hunt. ...The strings of the Symphony Orchestra were as expressively and technically perfect as the dance ensemble"

Manuel Jennen, Münstersche Zeitung, 2 December 2002

"A thrilling dance evening."

Petra Faryn, Die Glocke, 3 December 2002

"Tension-filled contrasts determine character of the complete dance evening, which takes place in a force field of the great, negatively charged poles of death and life. The audience acclaimed Daniel Goldin's new dance work with sustained applause, foot stamping and repeated shouts of bravo"

Hanns Butterhoff, Recklinghäuser Zeitung, 7 December 2002

"A sensitive masterpiece"

Marieluise Jeitschko, Rheinischer Merkur, 19 December 2002

"Two timeless and enormously expressive works. Applause, applause"

Silke Rehren, Westfälischer Anzeiger, 31 December 2002

"Goldin thankfully resists the temptation to take the poems underlying the compositions and literally translate them into pictures. Instead, on a stage strewn with blue paper snippets, he creates his own worlds. 'Death and the Maiden' turns into a wild and vigorous nightmare for eight dancers, in which the music and movement form a matching unity. 'Transfigured Night' is quieter and more restrained: a dreamlike, compellingly beautiful duo for just one male and one female dancer."

Andreas Meyer, Prinz Ruhrgebiet, January 2003

"For his first dance evening of this season, Daniel Goldin has taken his inspiration from pictures by the Austrian art nouveau artist Egon Schiele. With chamber music by Franz Schubert and Arnold Schoenberg, he has given his expressive dance a highly sensitive musical basis. Matthias Dietrich has designed the small stage space with aesthetic sensitivity: In the background there is a rocky cliff, while before it the asymmetrical dance space is a foaming blue sea of paper snippets that rustle and "splash" when, to Schubert's 'Death and the Maiden' String Quartet in D Minor, the four female and four male dancers race, stride, hop and jump across it, or stretch heavenwards, embrace or roll in fight – and finally the four "Deaths", wearing long coats, crawl to the fearfully cowering victim "Maidens" in their small pale dresses and envelop them – more protectively than smotheringly. ...Goldin's responsive movement composition of ensembles, solos and duets is guided, without slavishly following, by the rhythm of the musical tempi and also makes repeated allusions to Schiele's paintings. ...It is a long time since expressive dance in Germany has been given such an authentic reincarnation... "

Marieluise Jeitschko, Tanzjournal Heft 1, January 2003

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