Superlatives seem useless when making reference to Pina Bausch and her vast legacy. Words seem reductive. How to define the woman who was a genuine game changer in pushing the boundaries of dance theatre, whose iconoclastic approach sometimes left audiences—and some of her dancers alike—punch-drunk, and in tears? She often experienced walkouts, heckling, disgust from stunned crowds. She was once berated by The New Yorker critic Arlene Croce for deploying, as she saw it, the “pornography of pain,” and exploiting the women. Croce even found some of the work “misogynistic.” Harsh and a little myopic perhaps, but indeed, Bausch didn't shy away from depicting violence, sexual or otherwise, within her repertoire. Degradation, rape and humiliation were common themes for her.
The son of a painter and a set designer, director/choreographer Jean-Christophe Maillot was, it seems, destined to have a life in the theater. Born and raised in Tours, in central France, in 1960, he studied dance and piano at the Conservatoire Nacional de Région de Tours before joining the Rosella Hightower International School of Dance in Cannes.Continue Reading