«Man is passionately, infinitely attached to that which lasts only a second or only occurs a single time, as though the fervour of his dilection alone could reflect and perpetuate divine flimsiness; still more renewable, the charm of music is precious to him like infancy, innocence or loved ones doomed to death are precious to us; the charm is labile and fragile and the foreboding of its demise swathes in a poetic melancholy the state of grace it gives rise to.» Vladimir Jankélévitch, La Musique et l’ineffable, p.149
A moment is all it takes to change the course of a life, to give it a new turn. Between two long intervals there is always a key moment, a dazzling instant when there is a break with the past and the future begins to take shape. This moment is not part of the continuum. It is as though it is outside of time. It is an event that leaves its mark on the whole of one’s life. It is an opportune, sometimes inopportune, moment when destiny appears to meddle with our lives. Time is at the centre of this choreography by Michèle Noiret: time that goes by, the sense one sometimes has of time passing quickly or slowly, or ‘empty’ time, ‘suspended’ time, time that appears ‘heavy’.
Michèle Noiret and the four dancers with whom she has created Minutes opportunes have fixed this time of meetings and relations. The paths of four beings cross, between complicity and suspicion, tenderness and rejection. They seem to play a role in a strange intrigue in which every one of their actions appears to involve their destiny, like Hitchcock’s characters, giving the piece its haunting atmosphere. Sometimes, however, these beings appear to free themselves from the machinations in which they seem to be playthings. They attempt another way to live time. Their relationships become freer, more essential. The dance comes to life with the unsettling mystery and fleeting charm of these few instants when our existence is at stake.
The music, too, speaks of the importance of opportune instants and minutes. While everything goes by, everything passes by, the music of Jean-Sébastien Bach manages to magnify a moment and prolong an emotion. It appears, disappears, escapes, fluid and precise like a counterpoint. That is why, perhaps, it bewitches the humans with a passion for that which escapes ordinary time.
In Minutes opportunes Michèle Noiret continues to explore the way in which diverse stage compositions are combined. The structure of the dance seems to suggest an anthology of short stories. Some of them unfold in the same place, others present the same scenario in different circumstances. They are crossed by identical beings, whose destinies sometimes diverge. The art of choreography thus multiplies the possible readings, which are as numerous as life is complex.
Cast & credits
Conception and choreography Michèle Noiret
Created in collaboration with Dominique Godderis, Filipe Lourenço, Igor Shyshko, Lise Vachon
Performed by Filipe Lourenço, Marielle Morales, Igor Shyshko, Lise Vachon
Choreographical assistant Marion Ballester, Dominique Duszynski (alternating)
Original music composition Todor Todoroff, Jarek Frankowski
Music Jean-Sébastien Bach, Bernard Herrmann
Set design and costumes Anne Guilleray
Lighting design Xavier Lauwers
Lighting design assistant Marc Lhommel
Technical direction Christian Halkin
Lighting technician Marc Lhommel
Sound engineer Jarek Frankowski
Photography Sergine Laloux
Artistic collaboration Pascal Chabot
Production and tour manager Amandine Rimbert
Communication and press Alexandra de Laminne
Administration and coordination Cathy Zanté
Duration 75 minutes
A production of La Cie Michèle Noiret/Tandem asbl.
In coproduction with Théâtre National de la Communauté française de Belgique • Centre de Développement Chorégraphique du Val-de-Marne • Théâtre Paul Eluard, Choisy-le-Roi.
With the support of Ministère de la Communauté française de Belgique-Service de la Danse.
The Compagnie Michèle Noiret is subsidized by Le Ministère de la Communauté française Wallonie-Bruxelles, Service de la Danse and receives the regular help of Wallonie-Bruxelles International (WBI).
Michèle Noiret is member of l’Académie royale de Belgique.