Myriam Gourfink and Kasper Toeplitz to Perform ABOIS at San Francisco International Arts Festival, 8/22-23

Myriam Gourfink and Kasper Toeplitz to Perform ABOIS at San Francisco International Arts Festival, 8/22-23

The San Francisco International Arts Festival welcomes Myriam Gourfink and Kasper Toeplitz to the Bay Area for the debut of loldanse -- Gourfink's company and the premiere of their collaborative performance piece Abois.

The piece combines Ms. Gorufink's training as a contemporary choreographer with her study of Tibetan yoga. She is accompanies by Mr. Toeplitz who composes music that combines elements of electronic noise with digitized soundscapes.

Within the context of the piece, Abois refers to:

  • The animalistic quality of the human being: literally it could mean a dog barking into the unknown.
  • It also means to be "at bay" and is seen as a way to consider the world, and to face the world alone: in the piece there are two separate spaces: one for the dancer, the other one for the musician; there are two cries. It is as if the two separate elements both experience loneliness.
  • "Un abois farouche" which means a fierce bark (farouche: not tame or wild).
  • "Un abois farouche" can also refer to Beaudelaire: the romantic vision of being alone, here in the piece the desire for each of us to place oneself alone to face the audience.

Wearing spotted gray leopard boots and matching top, Myriam follows the rhythm of her own breath as she develops a very organic set of gestures. The dancer moves in a fascinating, extremely meticulous manner, organizing her points of contact with infinite precision. In her movement she pushes off in equal measure from her knees, elbows, toes, shoulders, and buttocks. The continuous movement transforms, barely noticeably, as the musician churns out pulsating sounds of grating air and drones that start to sound like a ringing in your ears. We end up with the impression of seeing the dancer's body in slow motion free-fall.

Both artists will lead workshops as part of the engagement on Saturday August 23 at 3:00pm. Ms. Gourfink will lead a workshop on the breathing techniques in energy yoga (western yoga in the Tibetan Tilopa-Naropa-Marpa tradition) and the private research carried out by her teacher Gianna Dupont. Mr. Toeplitz will teach a composition course in electronic music that takes as its starting point the use of noise, similar to the (white) canvas of a painter or rather to the block of stone of a sculptor.

SFIAF director, Andrew Wood said of the engagement, "This project might not be as populist as some of our previous French productions such as Circus Baobab (2007) or even AKYS Project (2010), but we think there is definitely an audience for the performances and students for the residency activities."

"The Bay Area is one of the leading centers in the United States for artists experimenting with white noise and combining noise with computer generated sounds, and San Francisco and Oakland are also listed by Forbes Magazine as the top cities for yoga in the US. We joke that our stereotypical audience couple is comprised of a modern dancer that subscribes to who has a computer hacker partner that tunes into San Francisco's"


Where: NOHspace, 2840 Mariposa Street, San Francisco, CA 94110
When: Friday-Saturday August 22-23, 8:00pm
Tickets: FREE (donations welcome)
Workshops: Saturday August 23, 3:00pm
Tibetan Yoga Breathing
Noise as Input
Reservations & Information: or 415-399-9554