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Vancouver Playhouse
Apr. 07, 2017

Vancouver Playhouse
600 Hamilton Street, Vancouver

April 7 & 8, 2017 8pm

What the day owes to the night
(Ce que le jour doit à la nuit)

In the final show of its 2016/17 season, DanceHouse presents the stunning, timely What the day owes to the night, by France’s Compagnie Hervé KOUBI.

In the performance, twelve Algerian and Burkina Faso dancers bring a freewheeling energy to a piece that combines elements of capoeira, martial arts, urban and contemporary dance. The dancers, who mostly come from street and hip-hop dance backgrounds, erupt across the stage with mesmerizing power, broad, physical gestures, and gravity-defying leaps and spins; they seem to be improvising even as they move in complex counterpoint.

The dance has been described as “a kind of desert prayer in which Koubi reconnects with his Algerian roots.” Born in France, choreographer Hervé Koubi embarked on his own journey in creating the work. As he puts it: “It is like an orientalist of the XIXth century come to Algeria to give life to his dreams of the Orient; I would like to give life to my dreams as a child born in France, and who discovered belatedly his true origins and those of his parents, Algerians from birth.”

One of Europe’s most distinctive choreographers, Koubi discovered the dancers in auditions in Algeria in 2009. Koubi was inspired to create What the day owes to the night by the eponymous novel (translated from Ce que le jour doit a la nuit) by Yasmina Khadra (pen name for an Algerian army officer). In the novel, a young boy is sent from one family to another.

The score includes Bach and Vivaldi, traditional Sufi music, and a piece by Nubian composer Hamza El Din played by the Kronos Quartet. What the day owes to the night won First Prize at the International Dance Festival in Algiers. It’s also recipient of an Honor Award at Sareyyet Dance Festival Ramallah.

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