MM CONTEMPORARY DANCE COMPANY
SCHUBERT FRAMES / GERSHWIN SUITE
George Gershwin's music is a perfect example of the spirit of the times when it was written, of the moods and the influences that it picks up and develops, in the United States, before the Roaring Twenties. His works go from classical to Jazz and it is exactly for this ability of his, to bring together popular music and that of a more noble tradition, that he may be considered the most representative musician of the twentieth century.
The expressive spontaneity of his motifs and the great popularity he achieved in his lifetime make him still an icon of the American Dream. The list of choreographers who have chosen Gershwin as the sound track for their works, within and without sacred works, musicals or anthologies, contains some of the gurus of the 1900s: from Michail Fokin and Roland Petit to Leonide Massine and John Neumeier, with Aurel Milloss, Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire e Christopher Wheeldon. But it was George Balanchine who, in 1970, left the most important mark with his ballet Who cares, created around seventeen classical Broadway songs, the most definitively American for style, exuberance and musicality.
Now it's Michele Merola's turn, choreographer who, for his preparation and sensibility, is quite far – distant – from the cited authors, with a unique approach to the “body as an instrument” thanks to his radical inner reality. He is the only contemporary Italian choreographer to choose comparison with Gershwin, in a anthological journey full of echos, from melancholy to glamour, technical brilliance and commemoration: a homage to the great American composer through a dance that is at one with the music, wedding the compositional wealth thanks to choreographies that favour movement, plasticity, but also the importance of a single gesture.
He has taken up a triple challenge: to put Gershwin's scores back where they belong; to highlight the eternal modernity of the composer; to bring to light the choreographer's versatility, able to develop his creativity and talent in step with modern times, in directions both unexpected and charged with worth and promise, thanks to the extraordinary technical, stylistic and expressive
Enrico Morelli has entrusted his new work to the extraordinary music of Franz Schubert: no one better than the Viennese composer has known how to interpret the contrasting sentiments of love, the tensions and melancholy, the longing but also hope. A collage of very famous pieces by Schubert, taken from absolute masterpieces – composed a good two centuries ago they still amaze today for their modernity – act as the sound track for this work dedicated to the many souls of modern man, where love has given way to disillusion, indifference to sharing, passion to respect and vice versa, in a to-ing and fro-ing between crescendo and diminuendo, to uncover entire universes and secret ties.
The choreography aims to be the telling of solitudes and soul mates, in a time like ours, tired, murky, disenchanted, tormented by a disquiet that hangs in the air, but also anxiously seeking for sense and a hope of happiness, of tenderness. A story of coming and going with special attention to the return, because happiness is a home to come back to, perhaps having changed, oblivious of the increasing speed of the present that risks leaving us struggling and of a future which, perhaps, we are afraid to explore. The problem is not in arriving, but in coming back. In learning again and again to love, anew. In having the courage to admit our fragility, and hence generous with our endearments.