In His BAM Debut, Dimitris Papaioannou Presents A Stunning Phantasm With THE GREAT TAMER

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In His BAM Debut, Dimitris Papaioannou Presents A Stunning Phantasm With THE GREAT TAMER

Through awe-inspiring stage design and breathtaking choreography Dimitris Papaioannou in his BAM debut, delivers an otherworldly take on the congruent relationship between the realms of the living and the dead.

In 2018 Papaioannou was the first choreographer to create a new evening length work for Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch since Bausch's death in 2009. He also conceived and directed the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2004 Athens Olympic Games.

Like much of his work, The Great Tamer references Greek mythology, proposing an omnipresent and restless underworld. Papaioannou, whose background is rooted in painting and visual art, intertwines these contemporary interpretations of ancient myths with classical art works brought to life including Botticelli's The Birth of Venus, Michelangelo's David, and a paralyzing take on Rembrandt's Anatomy Lesson.

Ten dancers deftly explore and reinterpret the human form as they flip, peel, and push floor panels across a sloping stage. Mystifying treasures are unearthed and buried again (including the dancers themselves)-a recurring action throughout the performance that creates an overarching archeology of memory. The dancers' movements are imbued with a kinetic vocabulary that connotes a dark and sometimes absurd narrative posing existential queries, witty observations, and slightly hopeful solutions. Heightening the piece's ambiguity is a taut score featuring a warped version of Strauss' Blue Danube waltz, adapted by Stephanos Droussiotis. The Great Tamer features performers Pavlina Andriopoulou, Costas Chrysafidis, Ektoras Liatsos, Ioannis Michos, Evangelia Randou, Kalliopi Simou, Drossos Skotis, Christos Strinopoulos, Yorgos Tsiantoulas, and Alex Vangelis.

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