ICAF NEWS: Dançando com a diferença and Theaterwerkplaats Tiuri
Between 22 and 26 May 2019, Anamaria Cruz and Eugene van Erven visited the Portuguese island of Madeira on the invitation of inclusive dance company Dançando com a diferença [‘Dancing with a difference’]. In the capital Funchal, they attended the world premiere of ‘SAFE’, a multimedia dance performance with live music involving a local hardrock band, professional and amateur dancers with all kinds of (dis)abilities and Venezuelan refugees who, after the crisis under Maduro, had returned ‘home’ to the island which their forefathers had left many decades ago in search of work and better lives. Our experience in Madeira was so powerful that, after a second meeting with the company – this time in Lille, France in June in the presence of the highly pregnant Jasmina Ibrahimovic – the ICAF team and Dançando’s artistic director Henrique Amoedo decided to enter into a wild collaborative adventure. At ICAF we connected Dançando with Theaterwerkplaats Tiuri, a performance workshop for people with different abilities in the Dutch city of Breda. With the help of Funchal city hall and a special internationalisation subsidy of the Netherlands Fund for Cultural Participation we were going to bring over some 25 artists from Madeira for the opening show of ICAF-8 in which they, together with dancers from Tiuri, dance teacher trainees from Codarts, and migrants from Rotterdam, they would present a reconstruction of SAFE, adapted to Dutch realities. Alas. It wasn’t meant to be.
On Friday the 13th of March we had to pull the plug on this promising exchange and on the entire festival. Henrique Amoedo had just finished three intensive but very rewarding days of working with the Tiuri group. They clicked in incredible ways. That Friday, when Anamaria, Jasmina and Eugene were licking their wounds, Henrique was with them the entire day and evening, supporting them – and they him – to process this huge disappointment. In the process, new ideas began to emerge on how we could salvage this unique exchange project and indeed other ICAF-programmes. This interview with Henrique, taped on Friday the 13th, is the first of a series of online ICAF News that we hope to continue producing in the months to come.