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Herve Koubi Company

Theater Atelje 212

What the day owes to the Night

choreography: Herve Koubi
music: Maxime Bodson , Hamza El Din par Kronos Quartet, Jean-Sébastien Bach, musique Soufi
lighting design: Lionel Buzonie
costumes: Guillaume Gabriel
assistants to choreographer: Fayçal Hamlat and Guillaume Gabriel

duration: 60’
premiere: Pavillon Noir/Ballet Preljocaj, Aix en Provence, 2018

co-production: Ballet of the National Opera of Rhin - National Choreographic Center / National Choreographic Center of Creteil et du Val de Marne - Company Kafig / Palace of the Congress de Loudéac / Cultural Center of Vitré / Ballet Preljocal - National Choreographic Center of Aix en Provence / Ballet Biarritz - Thierry Malandain - National Choreographic Center.

… For this work I would like to rely on an historical element in order to find the frames that will inspire the forms, the gestures and then the choreographic phrases, that of one of the supposed origins of the lace, that coming from the Orient and connected to the embroidery. Algeria is not the Orient and yet it is the landof this great artistic and literary current called Orientalism. So it is such a 19th century orientalist who came to Algeria to give life to his dreams of the Orient that I would like to give life to my dreams as a child born in France and who only discovered its true origins and those of his two parents, ethnic Algerians. ”What the day owes to the night” - novel by Yasmina Khadra, Director of the Algerian Cultural Center in Paris - is at that moment and at the same place where my parents left everything, as they say… Going on the quest of this day to give it strength and form as one goes in search of the Truth or more exactly of a truth. Lace is above all by definition a way of creating the ”day”, the day in a fabric, the day in the material... The day in my history and why not, without appearing too ambitious and even less pretentious, in history. It constitutes an ideal ”pretext”, a marvelous transposition of my paths and those traversed by each of the dancers, as so many threads mingling and intertwining, so many links also unite us in a history and a geography, that of the Mediterranean basin. To celebrate the lace in its refinement, its beauty while attaching itself to a work of memory… This piece is at the crossroads of two preoccupations: my taste for the construction and the danced composition and a deep need to bring me closer to my origins in the land of Algeria. Links to be found, others to be renewed and still others to be built.

Herve Koubi

Roots in Algeria, pharmaceutical doctor, Hervé Koubi decided to concentrate on a career as dancer and choreographer and his studies in Aix-Marseilles University. He continued his studies at the International Dance Center with Rosella Hightower in Cannes and later at the Opera of Marseilles. In 1999, he joined the National Choreographic Centre of Nantes. After, he started collaboration with the National Choreographic Centre of Cannes and Thierry Smits Company Thor in Brussels. In 2000, Koubi created his first project “Le Golem”. Since then, he has created numerous successful projects and works. From 2010, together with dancers from Algeria and Burkina Faso, he created some unforgettable performances. Today, Koubi is regularly invited by many professional training schools throughout France as well as abroad. Since 2014, he has been Associate Choreographer at the Superior School of Dance in Cannes and the Superior School of Dance in Marseilles. From 2015 onwards, he has also been Associate Choreographer at the Conservatoire de Danse de Brive-la-Gaillarde. In July of 2015, Brigitte Lefevre presented Herve Koubi the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres.

If Mr. Koubi can make worlds as largely absorbing as the one he conjures here, he is an important addition to dance.
© The New York Times

The movement is not only exciting but beautiful. The men look like figures in an etching by William Blake, like falling angels or Icarus after flapping his wings too close to the Sun.
© The New Yorker