TEMPELHOF, Waldemar Kretchkowsky, 2013 + 2020

This piece has been created during summer 2013 in Ukranian Transcarpathia in the Russian National Drama Theater of Mukatchevo and then in Ujgorod with an artistic team half of which made up of French and Ukrainian performers. It is revived at the Kiev Contemporary Dance Festival in September 2020.

Tempelhof, in german the temple courtyard. A courtyard symbolizing the space where our ancestors, some twelve thousand years ago, erected the vertical touchstone between this world and the one afterlife, at a time when humans in addition to worshipping animals and nature as superior divinities, recognized in themselves the part of the divine.

‘‘You couldn’t have been born in a better time than this one when we lost everything”  Simone Weil

Tempelhof, 2020. Berlin’s oldest airport, built in 1923, used by the Third Reich and then by the Allies after the Second World War, saw almost one century of history pass by until its closure in 2008. Two years later the City decided to open it to the public in its raw and original form as an aerodrome, a vast green and falsely empty park, bearing a rich life. This boundless courtyard becomes the symbol of a passage where the acceptance of emptiness, of space without landmarks and no references except present time, opens the doors of the temple, metaphorical embodiment of Simone Weil’s quotation.

Tempelhof, the performance, acknowledges this loss of reference points and stretches the physical limits of the stage, facing the paradoxal impossibility to build there. Evoking all these ancestral temples, it invents the new, invisible and moving one, built with bodies of today, seizing the energy of the thinking, dancing, singing, musical, luminous body, and the need to move, carried by each individual within the group. The choreography is articulated in 6 tableaux: Prologue, Rite, Transcendence, Void, Immanence and Epilogue.