On a platform surrounded by fluorescent gas tubes, a slim person, wearing a baseball cap, mustard yellow T-shirt and bright red boxer shorts, a caricature of himself, pumps himself up to a triumphant victory pose.(…) and starts to "Schuhplattel“, beats changing, increasingly complex rhythmic beats on chest, stomach and thighs, stomps with sneaker-shoed feet, jumps and turns. (…) Conant spends a full 15 minutes in acrobatic body twists, dribbles like Muhammad Ali, demonstrates a variety of tricky ballet steps and poses. He demonstrates ballet as physical training, what dancers have been practicing ironically at home since the crisis for the day when all they can do will once again merge into visible art.
Eva-Elisabeth Fischer, Süddeutsche Zeitung, June 08th 2020
Winking drastically. Under exceptional circumstances. And aware of the current explosive situation. Moritz Ostruschnjak makes all this physically palpable in his premiere „Tanzanweisungen“ . What you see is a firework of steps, turns and kicks (…) sometimes upbeat, sometimes contritely contrite. Boxing arms, signal fingers, sexy hips and punches against heart and forehead. In between again and again graceful balletic sprinklings. (…) Like a rubber ball turned into a human being with an occasional flaccid side. Whether it's burning energy with imaginary rope skipping or gun salvos. Conclusion: Ostruschnjak's „Dance Instructions“ are an occasional piece, but by no means a compromise theatre!
Vesna Mlakar, Abendzeitung München, June 8th 2020
Dance instructions, as the title of this dance solo might read in translation, are based on the artist’s experience with the pandemic situation of the last two years, and above all, social distancing, which is absolutely fatal for a world of art requiring a mutual dialogue with the audience. Moritz Ostruschnjak contrasts the immobility of this strange timelessness with an energetic, brisk choreography in a stunning performance by the Canadian-born dancer Daniel Conant. “It won’t be like this forever,” says the sign which the choreographer carries across the stage as the protagonist tirelessly, and at a rapidly changing pace, works his way through an extremely diverse canon of movement, including gestures of resistance, combat and victory, stylised masculinity, classical ballet, ballroom poses, and characteristic movements of various sports. We watch an absurd sequence of disparate elements that overlap, ironise and contradict each other, and then, in a refined combination, playfully yet ruthlessly fall into their own demise. The socio-critical subtext of this choreography remains highly topical even this year!
choreography Moritz Ostruschnjak
assistant to the choreographer Daniela Bendini
dramatic adviser Carmen Kovac
light design Benedikt Zehm
costumes Daniela Bendini, Moritz Ostruschnjak
production manager Hannah Melder
performing Daniel Conant
premiere 7 June 2020
Supported by the NATIONALES PERFORMANCE NETZ International Guest Performance Fund for Dance, which is funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.
“With me, it is always a feeling that comes first, and then I research and read.”
Moritz Ostruschnjak (1982), one of the most prominent figures of Munich’s independent dance scene, explores the transformation of physical experience and social structures of today under the influence of massive digitalization and virtualization of life. Specific features of his work include the mashup principle, which means combining and transforming content into new levels, and the insertion of “hyperlinks” that also explicitly point to the impact of technology on everyday life.
He studied contemporary dance at Iwanson International School of Contemporary Dance in Munich, and then went through an internship with the renowned French choreographer Maurice Béjart in Lausanne, where he concentrated not only on classical dance, but also on Oriental dance techniques and the Japanese martial art of kendo sword fighting. Since 2013, he has been working as a freelance choreographer.
Already his solo Island of Only Oneland (2013) thematized the phenomenon of Hikkikomori, those individuals who, due to the pressure of their environment and frustration with the state of society, choose to distance themselves from it (and isolate themselves in their homes, surrounded only by virtual reality). He marginally returns to this motif in his surrealist show YESTER:NOW (2021), through which he tries to deal with the pandemic situation and its impacts. The expert jury of the German theatre award Der Faust 2021 called the production one of the “most innovative and powerful productions of the past season.” The quality of his works is also evidenced by guest appearances at prestigious festivals. The chilling collage Unstern was performed at Tanzplattform Deutschland 2020 and this year he presented his self-reflexive, ironizing choreography Tanzanweisungen (It won't be like this forever), which was also selected by the Aerowaves network as one of the twenty best performances of the year.
Portrait of the choreographer Moritz Ostruschnjak
Interview with Moritz Ostruschnjak and Daniel Conant
photo Wilfried Hösel and Franz Kimmel