antistat!c sof!a

Uroš Kaurin and Bojan Jablanovec, 21 May

Tonight I Celebrate, by Via Negativa

A seemingly funny, profoundly disturbing "celebratory concert" presented by Via Negativa on the occasion of the closure of the 12th edition of antistat!c festival.

Fragment bellow: public singing to artist to show love and support.

Tonight I Celebrate, Via Negativa, Uroš Kaurin and Bojan Jablanovec, DNK, 21 May

Simon Hartmann und Daniel Muller, 20 May

Simon Hartmann und Daniel Muller, My Saturday Went Pretty Well Until I realized It Was Monday, 20 May, DNK

My Saturday Went Pretty Well Until I realized It Was Monday

Monday, not even Sunday, is where we are in regards to climate change, say the two artists.

Harmatnnmuller splashed on their audience a refined, funny and wise interpretation of Hamlet with a royal exuberance.

The duo reminded us that talent may deliver a serious militant piece in the as a pure entertainment show.

Antiata!c Festival running under the moto #VoteForDance chose Harmanmmuller's poster as a "face". Their image appeared on the festival's newspaper, badge and bag.

Hence, instead of its usual 41 seconds clip from the show, in the light of the coming EUP elections, Laaf is offering a glimpse on Harmanmmuller's voting views.

Zinka Užbinec, 18 May

Zinka Užbinec, Exploded Goo, 18 May, DNK

Exploded Goo, DNK

For this show I would rather lazily quote the very intriguing moderator, artist Snezhanka Snow White Mihaylova opening the discussion saying : "Thank you for reminding us how radical the stage is and what huge generosity one needs to occupy it".

And Ida Daniel's, collaborator, words closing the discussion : "Thank you for joining us in our political statement, that is to be still working on stage".

From its behalf Laaf would only add that it has witnessed both more radical and more political statements, but each with their measures.

Manuel Pelmus, 16-17 May

Manuel Pelmus, 16 May, Movement in Dance and Exhibition Context Workshop at Dance Station, NDK, Sofia

Movement in Dance and Exhibition Context Workshop

"The workshop revolves around questions of liveliness, performativity and movement in a dance and exhibition context... Other topics are: how live works in public and exhibition spaces hold a potential for different regimes of attention; for the reconfiguration of the public sphere in a more communal and collective experience; and the relationship of live presence with the technology and the digital." - antista!c's newspaper.

Manuel Pelmus is known to the British audience by his work "Public Collection Tate Modern 2016. A live exploration of artworks that questions the museum as a permanent collection".

The nature of Emanuel's work is one that makes of him a unique expert of fine arts, combining a vast knowledge of visual arts with profound expertise on dance, performance and choreography.

Hence, this workshop was an intense experience of shuttling between the two realms; visual arts and dance/movement.

On a personal level LAAF was very privileged to attend this workshop and is full of profound gratitude towards antistat!c festival organisers. Iva Sveshtarova, Willy Prager, Stephan Shtereff - Thank you people. Thank you.

Joining the brilliant class of professional performance artists, dancers and choreographers was one off experience - Together with having the time of its life, Laaf also had a very hard time following instructions and fulfilling tasks being completely unprepared on both conceptual and physical level.

Therefore, Laaf feels obliged to formally thank Manuel and the rest of the group for their patience and understanding.

🌞💚 Manuel Pelmus 👑⭐🤞💕

Manuel Pelmus' Movement in Dance and Exhibition Context Workshop, 17 May, Dance Station, NDK, Sofia

Ana Kreitmeyer & Sonja Pregrad, 15 May

Out There and In Here

"Is a performance about the uncertainty that we may or may not be spared. About something, about somewhere, about maybe, about the intensity of the uncertain and the unpredictable..." - antista!c's newspaper.

Out There and In Here, Ana Kreitmeyer & Sonja Pregrad, 15 May, DNK, Sofia

Uncertainty. Uncertainty I clearly felt while looking at my clips trying to choose one representative of the show and the performers' finesse.

Did I succeed? I am uncertain...

Pol Pi, 12 May

The before and after of Afectos Humanos aka Ecce (H)omo

"Ecce (H)omo is a reflection in action on the notion of inheritance in dance through an interpretation of the dance cycle Afectos Humanos by Dore Hoyer (1911-1962)" - extract from antista!c newspaper*. 

Pol Pi Ecce (H)omo , fragment "Vanity" (AFTER)

Laaf just figured out that if we stop caring and mentioning which dancer is from which country, then the issue of cultural appropriation should fade away, shouldn't it?

It also strikes Laaf as strange that in a time when we are striving to normalise gender fluidity we are still so keen on national rigidity.

We don't cease to care, ask, mention and quote individuals' countries of origin. And why while we don't care to ask any longer "Is it a man or a woman?" - which we don't do in Pol Pi's case and which is great; it should still matter "From which country?"?.

This reflection occured to me when I caught myself dropping out the mention of the country of origin and the country of residence of Pol Pi while copying the brief about the show from antistat!c's newspaper. It was somehow getting on my way as irrelevant. In dance it shouldn't matter.

Not mentioning the biological or adoptive countries of the artists won't shade the international character of a festival. Those for whom this data is relevant would search it themselves.

If we all think that the country's name or the artist's nationality matters (even in dance); then why are we, each time, surprised and offended by the raise of a certain political movement just before and after elections?

"Afectos Humanos is a series of short pieces that embody a wide range of feelings : Vanity, Desire, Hatred, Anguish and Love". - from antista!c newspaper.

"Vanity" from Dore Hoyer's "Affectus Humanos" | Chamber Dance Company" (BEFORE)

*Laaf loves antistat!c festival's program. It looks, smells and feels like a newspaper. Far from the usual shiny, glossy, white, light reflecting therefore heavy to read programs that get immediately lost as unhandy and never replaced as the quantity is exhausted; antistat!c's newspaper is practical and eco-friendly, but above all it's entirely in the spirit of Laaf's Sandy Summer 2019 Fashion (check Fashion subpage)

Niv Sheinfeld & Oren Laor, 11 May

Niv Sheinfeld & Oren Laor, The Third Dance, Theatre Azarian, 11 May


Writing About Dance Seminar

In Vera Nedkova House Museum.

Arnd Wesemann, 11 May, Writing About Dance Seminar

Arnd Wesemann, 11 May, Writing About Dance Seminar

Laaf desperately needs to learn how to write. How to write about dance in particular and about everything if possible.

Nevertheless and despite this necessity; and nevertheless and despite the presence of the refined and unique aristocrat of dance critic Arnd Wesemann, Laaf spent most of the time of the two-days seminar reflecting and writing an essay on... Establishment and despotism writing.

I really have no idea why my brain was kidnapped this way. Maybe because the seminar took place in Vera Nedkova House Museum, a place even though charming, situated on a street leading to the Stalinist style building once the House of the Bulgarian Communist Party? I don't know.

Typical for Laaf though : is to be in a universe of its own missing the whole point of an exercise.

Or as Laaf's father loves to say: 

عرب وين طمبورة وين

"Where are the Arabs, where is Tamboura" 

Tamboura's (the woman from dad's proverb) story though Laaf will tell another day.

10 May, Writing About Dance Seminar in Vera Nedkova House Museum

Manuel Roque,  10 May

Bang Bang

Was a simple, active, lonely, 55 minutes initiative danced to exhaustion.

I say "was", as the audience in Sofia on Friday, was the last audience to see Bang Bang after 2 years of world touring.

"I wanted to make a piece about dance, resistance and reality", says the artist. I have to say "You've done it!".

And the result was unlike anything Laaf has experienced spending half of the time dozing and the other half ecstatic.

Laaf will here after keep an eye on choreographer and performer Manuel Roque.

In this fragment of Bang Bang Laaf sees itself portrayed: many micro-wonky steps, mostly on the spot, with eyes wide shut, lonely and persistently moving in an unclear direction, fading in the distance.

Laaf loves it.

Magazine for Dance Vol.1 Launch

Thursday, 9 May 2019 Kick's Bar Sofia, after dark

KARPOV not KASPAROV psycho- trance act playing at Magazine for Dance Vol.1 launch party


حديدان جقي

14.05.2019 19:53


Nayem Hasidi

13.05.2019 20:30

memento mori '''' thanks

Gina Thaylor

13.05.2019 20:18

Great review, thank you.

Amanda Milford

13.05.2019 20:16

Love it! Best contemporary dance festival in Istern Eu...

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