Kat Válastur ( born in Athens, Greece) is a choreographer and performer. Since 2007 she lives and works in Berlin. Her choreographic works are defined by the creation of transformative experiences on stage. Through the use of the mythical as a tool, she creates a condition that is charged with historical, fictional, social and personal experiences. This mythical construction that channels reality becomes a speculative topos and a force field that the performers inhabit. The choreographic conditions that she creates and which she calls ”the fields of forces” set the ground for her and the performers to manifest ways in which the body actively resists to structures of power through the building of a dance language that has its core in the element of transformation.
In 2008 she posed the question ”What is there left to be danced? ” and she created a series of works on the subject of time as a way of approaching the body in relation to space. This fictional condition defined the kinetic vocabulary of a series of creations. In Lang ( 2008) the bodies twist and circulate on the idea of the concentric circles and cardinal points. In 2010 she continued with the investigation on time in a series of works inspired by Homer’s Odyssey, integrating more in her work the concept of the field charged with attributes that are embodied. Stop-motion and film editing processes became tools for the choreography and composition in this cycle of works, using the episodes of the epos as the context to set contemporary questions regarding archetypes and stereotypes that are found in the epos.
In 2013/14 she was an invited artist at the Institute of spatial experimentation a project initiated by Olafur Eliasson and the University of the Arts, Berlin. During the program she began researching on a new series of works under the title The marginal sculptures of Newtopia exploring the encounter between the body and a virtual topology it inhabits. The concept of a fictional virtual space yet unknown applied to these creations a speculative character. During her participation as an invited artist she took part in the exhibition-festival of future nows at the Neue nationalgalerie Berlin (2014) with the work We were better in the future in which she transformed the space of the museum into a working space for her upcoming project.
The creations of the trilogy includes the works GLAND, in which the choreographer and performer Kat Válastur wanders through unknown landscapes created alongside her body. Ah! Oh! A contemporary Ritual, a work that stands as a reflection on the origins and traditions of circle dances taking place in the annihilation of times.This Project was praised for its captivating atmosphere and radical inventiveness and OILinity a choreographic essay on crude oil dependence by Western societies and the end of resources.
She was acclaimed as a promising talent for dance by the Tanz magazine (2016), she was a nominee for the George-Tabori award (2017) and on the same year she had a retrospective of her work under the title WE WERE BETTER IN THE FUTURE presented at the HAU Hebbel am Ufer. In 2017 she also started working on a new cycle of works The staggered dances of beauty in which she reevaluated the production of mythology as a tool to process contemporary and existential questions relating to digitalisation and the ways it affects and permeates our skin.
In this latest series the digital process of “morphing” in which an image or a shape transforms into a seamless transition to another, becomes a kinetic technique of bodily transformations. It is developed in relation to the use of digitally pitch-shifted voice as an integral part of the bodies performance. The first creation of the cycle was Rasp your Soul was followed by the work Stellar Fauna that premiered at HAU Hebbel am Ufer. The last work of the trilogy “Arcana Swarm” was supported by the Foundation Hermès in the frame of the “NEW SETTINGS” and it was presented as a work in progress in the context of Live works -Performance Act Award, volume 7 in Centrale Fies in Italy (2019).
In 2021 she created the solo work “Eye,Lash!” which she choreographed and performed. The piece was a cinematic adaptation of her solo, directed by the filmmaker Ilaria Di Carlo and had its online premiere on the 9th of March 2021 at the digital stage of HAU Hebbel am Ufer ( HAU4) . Her latest creation ” Diana,Even” had its premiere on the 7th of January 2022 at HAU Hebbel am Ufer. Both works are dealing with the subject of womanhood, the ways the mythical and the historical space are integrated into the reality of women and the construction of new feminist figurations through an active imagination.
She also creates video works that often accompany her dance pieces or stand as independent installations ( Ultra censored 2017, Stellar Fauna 2018, Slothian days 2020, Your radiant embrace 2020)
She studied dance at the Hellenic School of Dance in Athens, at the Trisha Brown Studios in New York on a Fulbright scholarship, and received a Master Degree from the (SODA) Master Program at the Inter-University for Dance in Berlin. She is based in Berlin
Her work are presented internationally in venues such as: HAU Hebbel-am-Ufer, Théâtre de la Ville ( Paris), Recontres Choregraphiques de Seine-Saint-Denis, Theatre de Nimes, Tanz im August festival, Aerowaves, Springdance festival, Tanzquartier Wien, Künstlerhaus Mousonturm, STUK, Hellerau, Theatre festival basel, Athens and Epidaurus festival, B Motion festival, The Place, Onassis Cultural Centre, Madrid en Danza festival, Hamburger Bahnhof Museum, Serralves museum, Julidans, among others
Since 2022 Kat Válastur is a member of the German Academy of performing arts.
…However, Válastur does not construct these figures as sacrifices. Movements that appear to be externally controlled become self-confident poses of strength. Again and again identities are constructed and deconstructed through dance. Everything stays in motion. Válastur makes it possible to physically watch the metamorphosis of her characters. It doesn’t matter whether you know their background story or not.
It’s impressive how the dance performance, music, stage design and lighting design of “Eye, Lash!” interlock and create new moments of tension over and over again. In addition, the camera work ensures a change of perspective and close-up views that would be impossible live, and also bring out the reflections in the dark water on the stage.
Lennart Garbes ( 2021)
…What is also fascinating about this piece is that Kat Válastur succeeds in finding access to our present from mythology and archaic images and rituals and also from post-apocalyptic science fiction ideas. Her fluid figure is a woman of the present, flooded with memories of women from the past and visions of possible women of the future.
Frank Schmid ( 2022)
Choreographer Kat Válastur returns to Portugal and demonstrates the power of condemned women
…In this intermediate world, the dancers dissolve in their respective states and atmospheres. The movements arise, for example, from a slight quivering of the abdomen and pelvis, a tremor that engulfs the whole body, causing it to convulsively twitch, every muscle tense, a barely agile hardening, the limbs seem to crack out of the joints.
Or they wander and glide, stride and bounce around the room, arms and head raised, their faces radiant, a jubilation and rejoicing, which, however, will pass as well as the states of fright, reverence and devotion. Or like the hidden object, the orgiastic sculpture caressing, caressing bodies, to which the otherwise lonely people who drive through the space once gather. Everything passes away, every state, every emotion vanishes, it transitions seamlessly into something else that is just as immortal…
Frank Schmid, rbbKultur (21-11-2019)
“Arcana Swarm” invites the audience to an inner journey. And again Kat Válastur proves to be a master of metamorphoses.
Sandra Lucina, Tagesspiegel ( 18-11-2019)
…As if the bodies are moving forced by an unknown force into unfamiliar conditions, they climb up stairs, swing handkerchiefs, lay motionless on the floor or carry an oversized pink heart across the stage. A heavy wind blows along the black-hanged walls, and expands and frames the energetic scenarios of its ‘foreign residents’, which sometimes send calls, strange sounds and lovely voices into microphones that protrude into the stage like organic plants. ‘Energy’ finds a theatrically remote scene here as a social extra-worldly transformative force.
Sabine Huschka, Dance researcher ( Tanzraumberlin, January/ February 2020)
…Arcana Swarm operates using a metaphor that is as diffuse in its performativity as in its meaning: the drift. A mysterious multitude drifts within the impermanence of affectabilities, temporalities, and embodiments.
Alexandra Balona, TQW magazine ( 7-06-2020)
“This work surprisingly rasps your soul with its raw sweetness. There is something aesthetically pleasing about Stellar Fauna, especially in the video. The performance is a raw, elegiac experience of the twilight of the gods. It is indeed “A discourse about bodies in the wilderness of our times” that brings with it an archaic primordial call. Cryptic in its references to the ecosystem breaking down and becoming untamed, it is a veiled critique to our way of living that would upset the ancient gods. We are killing the natural beauty surrounding us, unleashing unknown forces.”
Katja Vaghi ( 2018)
“Through perfect interaction of movement, sound, light and stage design, the performance unfolds a strong craft. Once again it becomes clear: Kat Válastur is a choreographer with her own artistic vision. And certainly one of the most reflective creators of the Berlin dance scene”
Sandra Lucina ( 2018)
We shuffle downstairs, switching places with the other half of the audience, to the ground floor where we recline on high quality bean bags to watch one screen, our bodies passive, our faces and eyes timed together. Here, as placid beings, we watch a documentary about human beings, their features, habits, habitat. They are so like us, only slightly different. A species diverged from us some time in the past. They are so beautiful. The eyelids close so elegantly in the sun, their bodies bob so softly in the water; the shape of their mouths, their nose, their teeth differs in exquisite detail; they like to sit close to other members of their species, look closely, touch closely. Here we see a species with which we are and are not one—here we see ourselves at our future-present moment, on the edge of the unknown.
Sasha Amaya ( 2018)
tanzschreiber : writing on dance : kat válastur on the strangeness of species
The focus on embracing the water puts the invocation of the (sin) flood in a different light: ‘the end of us’ becomes liberating when there is a new form of life in front of it, one that can live more in harmony with the ocean and can let go of obsessions. Man and all life returns to the water from which it once came, and which will eventually swallow up all the remains of human “civilization.”
Due to the complementary second part, the first part of Stellar Fauna also becomes more interesting in retrospect, as a techno-dystopian negative of the illuminated post-anthropocene presented in the film. Válastur shows us two possible visions of the future that compete with each other – people will perish, that is for sure, but the question is what will come next.
Marijn Lems ( 2020)
“Creating fictional force fields is elementary in the work of Kat Válastur. How the Berlin based choreographer succeeds to create a highly crafted and subtle outcome though the interplay of sound, light, stage design and choreography is hard to describe. In Rasp your Soul Enrico Ticconi’s powerful performance, we sense every cell of his body to be flooded with the cultural garbage of our digital world, causing strange outbursts that turn him into a cliché of a sex-toy, a narcissus or a wild animal.”
Michaela Schlagenwerth (2018), Taz
“The greek choreographer has not only developed a unique and personal form language, she also works on contemporary social questions. In “Rasp Your soul” she investigates how a digital surrounding influences an analogue body… (Enrico Tricconi performs) a phantasmic creature in a sensual pose… Kat Valastur works expertly with the technological expansion of the body to get to new forms of expression and to show the flaring of existence.”
Der Wolf in uns, Sandra Luzina (2018), Tagespiegel
“For the upbeat of her new work series “The staggered dances of beauty” Kat Valastur creates a liberating experience… In Kat Valastur’s words it is a Solo for a “Humanoid with a sensitive Skin”… She exposes this body like a vast gap between human and art.”
Arn Wesemann (2018), Tanz Magazine
…The performer, with jeans and sports shoes and a t-shirt in the color of the skin reveals an expressivity that permeates us: exceptional flexibility, rich its range vocabulary, and a deeply engaged performing. It is a modern, mythological being that articulates our origins, enigmatic, without linear logic. Every cell of his body is involved in this passage from the “sensory” to the “psychic body”…Changes are steep, accompanied by intense and expressive vocalisations are overwhelming the viewer. The animal is always here and the mouth of the “pure humanoid” becomes a carrier of speech and anxiety. The kinaesthetic experience of the act makes us breath asthmatically as the lights go down and the face, the gestures and the sensitive skin of the humanoid who was breathing before like a tree are lost.
Klimentini Vounelaki, ( 2018) anagnostis
…Válastur deciphers on the basis of the physical tangible sensation and materiality, the contemporary social-digital condition through a staggered movement. A condition that balances between a mythical / animalistic and technosomatic morphology. It describes a multifaceted and contradictory subject, merged and trapped between his social and private performance, a grotesque existence that transcends the gendered features and reciprocates between narcissism and ferocity…The show as a whole manages to influence us like a healing and redeeming experience
Natalia Koutsougera ( 2018), Dancetheater.gr
…Her gaze, one would say, turns towards an anarchic exuberance of the senses, proposing a different delimitation of the dancing body on stage. If the body in the dance is usually a carrier of subjectivity that wants to express itself and to express through feelings or experiences through kinetic forms, in the case of Rasp your soul the body is divided, constantly oscillates in what recalls its animal origin and what verifies his human nature. However, the proposed scenic language skillfully manages to merge these two aspects without giving precedence to one or the other “nature”. The dancer is sometimes converted into a dummy, following impulses that lead him to a heavily charged body, and sometimes resembles a human cyborg, programmed to communicate through a verbal code that instead of transmitting meaning, returns to the basic principle of every language, the body.
Tasos Koukoutas ( 2018),Dancepress
…On s’autorisera à y voir un précis de libre fantaisie, façon pop déjantée, mais quand même une texture sourde et profonde de fragilité méditative, de tentative flottante et horizons ouverts, testée au masculin. Une riche création sonore y fait écho, comme remontant par les pores de la ville, de ses médias, dans la tentation incertaine de produire un discours qui pourrait se tenir, mais n’y parvient pas à l’oreille. On sort tout balloté de cette traversée qui ne ressemble à aucune autre.
Gérard Mayen ( 2018), Dancercanalhistorique
…An inexhaustible kinetic repertoire, a mimetic and “tight” organisation of time, fragmentation, virtual reality and above all, magic and a creation of a new approach of myth on stage: the biological body that eliminates its layers while it transformed into something else, primitive, poetic and at the same time mutant and ultra technological…
Nikos Xenios ( 2018), book press
Mitologia Digitale. La coreografa Kat Válastur al Roaeuropa festival
…Rasp your soul becomes and invitation-or perhaps a wish-to unhinge these mechanisms, to rediscover the experience of feeling, to flesh out and scrape one’s soul to the most authentic core it still possesses what a sensitive skin still manages to achieve to warn even in a post mythological universe…
Valeria Vannucci ( 2020) Artribune
…Rasp your soul projects sensations on the contemporary world through an emotional portrait constructed and studied on the basis of current reflections and questions. Man and machine merge everything is changeable. This is the principle that works continuously in the background between rough materials and refinements of the spirit…
Tiziano di Mucio ( 2020) Liminateatri
Die unheimlichsten Metaphern sind die, von denen man ahnt, dass sie sehr präzise sind, von denen man aber trotzdem nicht weiß, wofür sie stehen…
Die Kunst künftiger Körper, Von Astrid Kaminski (2017), Tanzschreiber
Be aware of the space around you
…Válastur’s works can be seen as starting points to think about our bodies suspended online and offline, performing constantly and not just on a stage.
Renne Carmichael (2017)
A highlight of this inspirational evening was undoubtedly Kat Válastur and Sebastian Plano’s work “Sulantat”. Incidentally, the title “Sulantat” is to be understood as a play on the ancient myth of the Tantalus. The ballet “Trapèze” served as a source of inspiration for Kat Válastur “Work with a body that moves weightlessly in space”. With Elien Rodarel, the choreographer had found a trapeze artist who stung the audience’s attention with his performance, as Rodarel showed artistic tricks on a rope swing at lofty heights. But “Sulantat” is much more than the juxtaposition of tricks, it is dance
Tanzimpressionen zu Prokofjews Ballett “Trapèze” bei MPHIL 360°, Sabine Kippenberg, 2016, Tanznetz
How Kat Válastur arranges the bodies in the room often has a sculptural refinement. The opening scene of “OILinity” at HAU 2 captivates. The dancers Nitsan Margaliot, Enrico Ticconi and Marysia Zimpel initially remain in a kind of symbiosis, cling to each other, form a triangle. In a sudden impulse they throw their heads back, as if they want to tear themselves away – and then nestle even closer together…
Sandra Lucina Der Tagesspiegel 29-4-2016
…OILinity is a fascinating-enigmatic, bizarre-fantastic radiant world, that only a few among Berlin’s dance artists are able to create.
Frank Schmid Kulturradio 29-4-2106
In “OILinity”, the choreographer becomes more concrete than ever, blending the movements closely with the highly sculptural sound of Filippos Kavakas…
Astrid Kaminsky Taz 30-4-2016
Man kann das einen Widerspruch nennen. Für Kat Válastur ist es Camouflage. Man fördert Öl und zugleich das Gegenteil, den Sport. Man verwundet und verschorft die Umwelt und möchte im Schlamm der aufgewühlten Erde doch wieder die kunstvollen Ornamente erkennen, wie sie auf Válasturs Bühne dargestellt sind. Die Tänzer davor, gekleidet in Camouflage, verschmelzen wieder und wieder mit ihnen. Um selber Kunst zu werden. Stoffkunst. Kunststoff. Wie in Öl gegossen.
Arnd Wesemann Tanz June 2016
…It is not just about oil. It’s about power and greed, about dependencies and deeply felt helplessness, about envy, resentment and competition, about desperation and courage, about empathy and solidarity, about wasting resources, about reckless human egocentrism ruining the planet, about the superior power of economic structures, the functionality of capitalism, and also what it does with humans. For all this she finds a very own language of movement. Gestures are like words, says Kat Válastur, and with a wise heart she formulates deeply felt sentences that dance, demand and captivate, reduced and with forceful precision. Brilliant!
Rando Hanemman, tanz.at 2019
Die eine Frau und die beiden Männer in Válasturs Choreografie erinnern stark an Passagiere in ihrer Schleife zwischen Narragonien und Narragonien. Dieses Trio setzt sich allerdings sehr zeitgemäß – im Unterschied zu den archetypischen Witzfiguren bei Brant – aus Personen ohne Eigenschaften zusammen.  Es bildet eine soziale Trinität und tanzt die Allegorie jener Orientierungslosigkeit, wie sie in einer Gesellschaft auftritt, deren letzter verbliebener Kompaß der Ausschlag jener Gier ist, der zu folgen sich gebietet, wenn das gültige Glaubenssystem – das der prinzipiellen Gewinnung, hier konkret von Öl – aufrecht bleiben soll
Helmut Ploebst, Raffinierte Relationen Zwei Forensiken für ein Stück : OILinity von Kat Válastur im Tanzquartier Wien
“…oblivion seems to be the only way out, to touch the bottom and start from scratch. Small aberrant gestures signify a new plan for the body. Choreographer Kat Valastur invites us to imagine other fictions of the body, everything remains to be reinvented. Here is a beautiful, bold way to close this 2015 edition of the June Events festival, which raises more than ever being together in the centre of the debate, in the heart of a shared imaginative effort.”
AH ! OH ! A RITUAL DE KAT VALASTUR, Smaranda Olcèse-Trifan (2015), abraslecorps.com
“Sentimentality is a malfunction of emotion“ was one of Wallace Steven’s credi and maybe he was right. The performative dance usually wraps time-diagnostic empathy into exuberant irony – out of sheer fear. For me, Kat Válastur’s fantastic-dystopic rave “Ah! Oh! – A contemporary ritual” is the best exception and the strongest emotional piece in 2014.”
Highlights 2014, Astrid Kaminski (2014), blog.frieze-magazin.de
“Indeed it was a force of load which the mixed, rather young audience encountered in tense silence, with keen attention and reciprocating with rounds of applause. Ahwell, oh indeed – a quite contemporary ritual! Contemporaneity though was not splely established in the way of dressing or by the stage design, though they were part of it, but even more through the sort of body language. The choreographer defines it as ‘kinetic’ – to my mind came the phrase ‘affective dance’. Though one that addresses affectivity not as a sheer bodily response to influences, but as a complex interplay between body and expressions.”
As if blown-up cheeks could drag you down…, Monika Jaeckel (2014), mindgap.org
“Kat Válastur constructs her “post-apocalyptic atmosphere” with a very precise work on movement – vocabulary and – execution in interaction with light, sound and costumes. Its tension remains vivid over the entire course of the performance and sets me into a trancelike state. Even if recognizable relicts of archaic rituals pervate the performance quite obviously, dancing in a circle, the soundscape, the give and receive, the witnessing of spectators to name a few, the evening appeals less to the intellect. It rather develops its own suction force and creates an atmoshphere that must be experienced.”
POST – APOKALYPTISCHER REIGEN “Ah! Oh! A Contemporary Ritual” von Kat Válastur im HAU2, Ronja Ruppert (2014), tanznetz.de
“Die Tänzer strecken die Hand nacheinander und zucken zurück. Berühren sich nur für eine Sekunde mit spitzem Ellenbogen. Doch immer wieder bilden sie einen Halbkreis oder deuten einen Reigen mit gekreuzten Schritten an. Es hat den Anschein, als ob die alten Ritualmuster tief in der Erinnerung stecken und verschüttete kollektive Erfahrungen mühsam reanimiert werden müssen. Überraschend ist es nicht, dass die Akteure sich schließlich zu stroboskopischem Flackern in eine Art Trance tanzen. Die wogenden Bewegungen bekommen durch die Zeitlupe etwas Weiches und Gelöstes. Klar, dies ist eine Ästhetisierung und Überhöhung der Clubkultur mit ihrem Versprechen auf Ekstase und Entgrenzung. Doch Kat Válastur lässt es dabei nicht bewenden.”
Kat Válastur im HAU Techno kann helfen, Sandra Luzina (2014), tagesspiegel.de
“Kat Valastur has designed a karstic world in which the dancers can be seen only as grey spots in front of a black wall, as shadowy apparitions that occur hesitant out of the darkness into the diffused light, donated by a large circular chandeliers in the centre of the stage, a wreath made of neon lights, a flickering, glowing light crown. There is apocalypse but also revelation, because the hidden unveils and exposes itself. […] This choreography is captivating, disturbing and oppressive, […] strongly existentialistic and adamantine in the form. […] It is a choreography that goes far beyond the average in the Berlin dance scene, in terms of topic, style and effect.”
HAU2: “Ah! Oh! A Contemporary Ritual” UA, Frank Schmid (2014), kulturradio.de
…An intense sound accompanies the ritual, which freezes time. The details gradually shift. Slowly the hands get out of the pockets and someone is touched or grabbed by the hand. The six steal each other’s breath with mimic hand gestures, an almost comical gesture in this dark landscape. The soundscape sets a different tone, the dancers make sounds. After that break, the ritual continues with a certain relaxation and a new spatial planning. Ah! Oh! A contemporary ritual is not an easy idea, but it follows its own logic. The atmosphere is imposing and Válastur’s images remain on the retina for a long time.
Moos van de Broek, Theaterkrant ( 2016)
“Il n’est pas aisé de décrire par les mots la subtile variété de moyens physiques engagés par l’artiste à cet effet. On ne décrira donc qu’une seule séquence, à titre d’exemple parlant. Après avoir parcouru les deux parois dressées en angle, dans sa position debout chahutée, Kat Válastur vient à se coucher sur le plateau. Elle y repose sur son côté, à angle droit du mur, et ses pieds sont donc plaqués contre la partie basse de celui-ci. Depuis cette position, elle se met à avancer en glissant sur le sol. Dès lors, ses pieds miment une marche contre le mur.”
« Gland » de Kat Válastur, Gérard Mayen (2015), dansercanalhistorique.fr
“GLAND (the margical sculptures of Newtopia)” is a brilliant piece that consists of two parts: a live performance (dimension A) and a narration embedded in a website (dimension B). Here the artist tells us about her journey through a mysterios cityscape that includes the tower of babylon, a chromatic river as well as a room full of masks. Válasturs “Newtopia” is a fictitious remnant of our culture with traces of Pablo Picasso and Franz Kafka, among others.”
Unter den Augen der Asphalt-Sphinx, Helmut Ploebst (2014), derstandard.at
“GLAND (dimension a&b) est la première pièce d’une série intitulée The marginal sculptures of Newtopia, initiée par la chorégraphe et danseuse grecque Kat Válastur. Ses matières : corps et espaces. Ce n’est donc pas surprenant de la retrouver parmi les participants du Institut für Raumexperimente (N.D.L.R., « Institut de l’expérimentation d’espaces ») de l’artiste de renom Olafur Eliasson, achevé cette année à Berlin. Pour GLAND, Válastur souhaite mettre à l’épreuve nos habitudes de perception et de compréhension.”
GLAND : sculptures d’une nouvelle utopie, Florence Freitag (2014), berlinpoche.de
“With every change of position, the persistence and precision of illusionist performer Válastur redefines what is above and below, underground and abyss, reality and fiction. The next dimension of the journey is online to coincide with the premiere of the performance. An online map conceals stories and pictures that inspired the choreography – the imaginary journey continues.”
Two, three, four dimensions Kat Válastur’s journey through new worlds (2014), tanzraumberlin.de
“L’ensemble crée une sorte de paysage physique où corps et figures sont réifiés, comme si « votre vie entière passait devant vos yeux » fragmentant une réalité déjà lointaine et pourtant instantanée. C’est en travaillant à une adaptation de l’Odysée d’Homère, que la chorégraphe grecque (mais vivant en Allemagne) que l’idée de trouver une équivalence sensorielle au récit mythique est devenue source d’inspiration. Cet épisode ayant pour référence Ulysse au Royaume des morts, là où le temps et le temps n’ont plus de sens.”
Kat Válastur «Oh ! Deep Sea – Corpus III», Agnès Izrine (2014), dansercanalhistorique.com
“One could also think about the almost hallucinating experience while dancing with oneself under a stroboscopic light and when sometimes glancing out experiencing the other dancers in a ever different sequence of fragmented movements. A strange dream-like atmosphere culminating in the dream scene of the piece that is interrupted by abrupt stills of accidents that consequently play out the space / time fragmentation through flashback moments. Just then to fall back to continue as nothing ever really happens – no real clash of the dancers (except one), the (e)motions cut, limbs thrown out and drawn back again. Creating the impression that the interrupted movement virtually processes time and space as another dimension instead of defining the actual.”
One day, when I was doing things at home…, Monika Jaeckel (2012), mindgap.org
“Kat Válastur translates the “graphein” (the process of writing) into an art of controlling “written” dance movements. The choreography is part of a “choreonautik”, a navigation through the “Schriftraum (written room)” of dance and orientates itself alongside the dynamics of performative, semiotic, iconological and contextual narrative strands. The result is another groundbreaking proposal within a very consistent work catalog and a piece that works from its first to its very last second.”
KAT VÁLASTUR SCHLIESST IHREN ZYKLUS “OH! DEEP SEA” IM BERLINER HAU 3 AB, Helmut Ploebst (2012), corpusweb.net
“Die Performer bewegen sich langsam und ruckartig, wie in einer Art Stroboskop-Zeitlupe. Wäre es ein Film, würde man von Stop-Motion sprechen. Jede Bewegung wird aus einzelnen Stils zusammen gesetzt, die Übergänge haken. Etwas fehlt, passt nicht zusammen. Diesen Effekt allein mit dem Körper herzustellen, darin liegt schon jetzt das Faszinosum dieser Arbeit. Zum Bewegungsrepertoire der Tänzer_innen gehört kaum eine einzige fließende Bewegung. Die Welt der Toten ist hier eine ohne flüssige Übergänge. Weder Bewegung noch Stasis, sondern etwas dazwischen. Und manchmal hört man wie von ganz weit her einen Hund bellen. Zerberus?”
Muster unter dem Mythos: Kat Válasturs “Oh! Deep sea – Corpus III”, Katja Grawinkel (2012), tanzimaugust-blog.de
“So wandern beide unabhängig voneinander durch den Raum, starten ihre vom Mittelkörper ausgehende Wellenbewegung neu, und doch scheint ein geheimer Energiefluss sie zu verbinden. Auch die den Vorgang illuminierenden Lichtstäbe „wandern“ mit. Was indes wie bloße Wiederholung ein und derselben diffusen Abfolge um Balance ringender Körper wirkt, variiert an den Orten im Raum.”
IM KAMPF MIT DEM ZYKLOPEN, Volkmar Draeger (2011), tanznetz.de
“Für mich sind Tänzerkörper ‚heroische Körper’”, sagt Kat Valastur. “Körper, die sich ständig im Wandel befinden und ihrer Umwelt deshalb oft schutzlos ausgeliefert sind.” Ihr Faible für Helden zeichnete sich bereits vor zwei Jahren ab, als die griechische Choreografin ihre Auseinandersetzung mit der Odyssee begann. “Was mich an Homers Geschichte so fasziniert”, sagt sie heute, “ist die Frage, was zwischen den Zeilen steckt.”
Tanzende Zyklopen, Elisabeth Wellershaus (2011), tanzraumberlin.de
“…Ligia Manuela Lewis, Ana Laura Lozza and Válastur herself exert an impressive Spartan athleticism with a ball and socket vocabulary, in which the tempo adjustments, direction change, and timed repetition reveal compulsion, grief, and exaltation.”
Swimming through the ages, Danielle Janess (2013), exberliner.com
“Au cœur de ce vertige circulaire apparaissent des « restes » de danse, rappelant un rock fantomatique, ou un obscur moonwalk. Capturée dans une ronde sans fin, la présence de ces silhouettes en miroir est rendue plus inquiétante encore par le crescendo qui les saisit : petit à petit, le tempo s’accélère, un emballement gagne la scène, faisant disjoncter la mécanique du twist, et les entraînant vers l’entropie. Lang : une épure chorégraphique en forme de boucle folle, où d’étranges figures jumelles « réfléchissent la reproduction du monde ».”
Rencontres chorégraphiques internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis : Kat Válastur, Gilles Amalvi (2012), spectable.com
“I look back at Lang and see a piece that itself takes a long time to developinto itself, using repetition as a form of de/composition – which leaves the spectator with an experience unlike any other, intellect confused, surprised, aroused through the body’s ability to understand (which is why the experience per se is means to an end).”
call it review no.1 – On Observation, Pavle Heidler (2012), pavleheidler.wordpress.com
“The most intriguing, yet existing work is from the Greek-German choreographer Kat Válastur, she chooses for a bare setting with TL lamps (or fluorescent lamps?) and is guided by texts of the philosopher Braudrillard and the Cassandra character from the Greek mythology. Her solo from 2008 starts with slow motion movements that are interrupted, as if the dancer stands in the light of a stoboscop. Next, the body makes pumping and thrusting movements. Music and movement are closely linked to each other, Válastur looks like an emotionally charged machine. Each movement is performed accurately. Again and again the choreographer explores a particular sensation in the body in such a concentrated and secure manner that it is palpable and makes you move along. Eventualy after a blackout she dances naked in the stroboscopic light.”
Een handvol toekomstig talent, Moos van den Broek (2013), theaterkrant.nl
“Also Válastur drew inspiration from an alternative source: the myth of Cassandra, the Trojan princess who could predict the future, but who was doomed never to be believed. Her movement language you’ve never seen before: without light she creates by herself a stroboscopic effect, in which smooth movements are seen as choppy ones. But even the simplest of hand movements are mesmerizing.”
“Au sol, dans un treillis et tee-shirt noir. La danseuse se livre peu à peu à une transe singuliére son vocabulaire chorégraphique empruntant aussi bien aux danses urbaines qu’ à la tragedie moderne. De dos, d’une simple gestuelle répétitive des bras, Papageorgiou captive son auditoire…”
Baryshnikov et les jeunes pousses, Philippe Noisette (2008), lesechos.fr