“On the Move” Ballet Zurich

January 14th, 2023, Zurich celebrated the Ballet Zürich’s premiere of ‘On the Move’, a triple ballet evening that comprised three dazzling and distinctive performances from choreographers Louis Stiens, Christian Spuck and Hans van Manen.

‘Tal’, choreographed by Louis Stiens who has developed several performances for the Stuttgart Ballet and now returns to Zürich with this new piece, “questions the concept of nature in French Impressionism and transposes the isolated body, with its strengths and weaknesses, into a contemporary reflection of nature”, and is beautifully set to large orchestral scores by famous 20th-century composers, Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy.

‘Lontano’, which is Christian Spuck’s last piece of choreography at Ballet Zürich before he embarks onto a new chapter of his life, is the musical centrepiece and is by Hungarian composer, György Ligeti. The arrangement speaks to the important themes of detachment, distance, and farewell – a wonderfully fitting goodbye for Spuck’s final Ballet Zürich production.

The piece ‘On the Move’ was initially created for Nederland Dans Theater in 1992 but was revised in 2017 by Dutch choreographer, Hans van Manen, who has forged a unique blend of academic dance techniques and his own individual style elements to become one of the most significant pioneers of classic ballet. Like his other pieces, ‘On the Move’ is also about interpersonal relationships, and is set to music by Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev’s First Violin concerto.

“Tension arises when people become aware of one another, especially in a pas de deux,” says Van Manen about ‘On the Move’. A pas de deux is a French term that means “step of two” and is a common expression used in ballet to describe a dance between two people, usually a man and a woman.

‘On the Move’ will be running until February 11th 2023.

Photos by Gregory Batardon