The contemporary dance project from Latvia has won the international Ibsen scholarship


In the International Ibsen scholarship competition the artistic project from Latvia has won and received funding for a contemporary dance performance on the theme of Henrik Ibsen’s play “Brand”.

The contemporary dance performance “?r?” (project “Moved by Brand”) is created by an intriguing artist team: the choreographer Olga Žitluhina, the dance dramaturge Inta Balode, musicians Juris Kaukulis and Kaspars Tobis of the band “Dzelzs vilks”, the stage designer Gints Gabr?ns, and the costume artist Šeila. The performance, which will have the premiere in early December in Riga, in the context of the Latvian contemporary dance is also notable with the large number of the dancers – fifteen contemporary dance choreography students of the Latvian Academy of Culture take part in the performance.

At the initiative of the Norwegian Government, the International Ibsen scholarship competition takes place since 2008 and drama and performing arts projects associated with the world known Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen’s works may participate in it. This year, in total 99 applications from 56 countries around the world were presented for the Ibsen’s award. Alongside with the project of the artists of Latvia, scholarships got two more projects from Greece and also the application of Indian artists. During assessment of the projects submitted to the contest, the jury moved forward as a priority not only quality of the project and capability to put into effect the scholarship within the Fund’s budgetary limits, but also by the supported projects tried to manifest the broad international visibility of Ibsen’s works as well as assessed the association of the creative artistic purposes with the social and educational spheres.

In Norway, alongside with the International Ibsen scholarship, the International Ibsen Award, Norway Funds International Ibsen Award is also granted and Ibsen’s conference is also held. The International Ibsen Award, which is one of the most prestigious theatrical awards in the world, has been received by such well known theatre personalities as directors Peter Brook and Ariane Mnouchkine. This fall, at the Ibsen’s conference, which was held in September, in the hometown of the playwright – Skien, the international audience scholarship winning performance’s “?r?” idea was successfully presented by the project’s curator Baiba Ozoli?a and the dance dramaturge Inta Balode. At the same time with the conference, the winning awards ceremony of the Ibsen scholarship competition was also held.

In the cultural space of Latvia, Ibsen’s creations have always been topical. His plays have been regularly staged in the Latvian theatre since its beginning, but the choreography of Ibsen’s work themes so far has been realized just as part of dramatic plays. Thus, for its creators, the emerging performance “?r?” is a challenge – to talk about the serious theme of Brand in the language of the contemporary dance in the format of a full-length performance.

The premiere of the performance “?r?” will take place on December 08, at 18: 00, in “Zirgu pasts” (46 Dzirnavu Street).

The performance is supported by:

Ibsen Awards, Ibsen Scholarships, State Culture Capital Foundation, Latvian Academy of Culture, Royal Norwegian Embassy in Latvia, and Nordic Council of Ministers’ Office in Latvia.