Clear Tears/Troubled Waters by Thierry Smits – Thor Co.


The new dance piece by choreographer Thierry Smits transcends the suffocating darkness of the current crisis to propose a new space for hope and reconstruction open on reinvented solidarities.

The cast:

Belgian choreographer Thierry Smits and his company Thor are back on stage with new work Clear Tears/Troubled Waters in the Halles de Schaerbeek / Brussels (last day today) before touring the country and Europe.

A cast of seven young dancers and three accomplished musicians (Tuxedomoon duo Steven Brown and Blaine L Reininger plus contemporary musician Maxime Bodson) will take the stage for this latest creation, returning here to choreographer’s primer desire to work as a real band.

The background:

For this new creation, an article in Le Monde was the inspiration for Smits’ interpretation of our disappearing world. Emphasizing on the fact that a lot is been talked about economics while crisis is actually casting its extended shadows on moral, social and ecological grounds, statement has been made. There is only one way out: changing our attitudes.

While financial and political crisis is for many directors and choreographers nowadays a source of inspiration Smits resolutely opts for optimism. No blind faith in the future or a negation of contemporary pessimism and distrust, but the hope that with the disappearance of an old way of life opens the way for the reinvention of society.

If politics consciousness is at the origin of the show, this show is not a political show but a moment of dance in its purest: no performance nore theater-dance to be seen here.

Convey a political background as a creative act such abstract as dance is not easy. But, like in architecture, shapes and movements can make us feel it by arousing our emotions.

A dance in 3 acts:

The 1st part is about Nostalgia. Clear Tears/Troubled Waters “begins with a dark scene, barely lit where nine white pillars structure the stage, metaphor for the remains of a world that no longer exists. Dancing is very individual, the movements are slow, heavy, accompanied by deep sighs and gasps as if the dancers, all wearing black, are suffocating, living their last breath. The slow tempo music with hard and sharp tones highlights this portrait of an ending world.

The second part gives way to a more poetic atmosphere as the scenery begins to move, the space is released, the future seems to brighten slightly ahead and even sometimes elsewhere .Gradually, as white cool light starts emanating from aside the pillars, the dancers seem to find each other, having swapped their black clothes for bright blue ones. Dancing is “together”, turning into sensitive duets. Pillars are pulled one by one into the air, freeing the space with the sound of a more melodic music and happier rhythms. The choreography is lighter, more frivolous, with long lines, extensions and jumps.

The show concludes with the complete erasure of the setting reinventing a space and expression of freedom. It is about an invitation for building a new world where new solidarities are been forged. Time for a new unleashed choreography. Duets has gone trios, finishing the play in a beautiful choir movement, beating in harmony, sign of utopia or a a new hopeful future?

Information :

Tour dates
Company Thor website
• Company Thor on Facebook
Extra photographic materials

Coming next this week on Gusmen, the complete review of the play & the interview of Thierry Smits the choreographer.


Image source: © Fabienne Louis
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