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ITI – UNESCO International Dance Day 2020


More vulnerable than many other art forms, dance is shivering during Corona times. Opera houses are locked down, and dancers have to do their training at home. Worse still, most of the world of dance consists of independent companies that do not have their own venues. Dance is a migratory bird, and it can easily be trapped in a net of limited resources and fragile structures.

Dance will, no doubt, survive Corona. Humanity has been dancing since the world began, and will never stop. But how, when, where and for whom? The dance critics are members of an audience of dance lovers, suffering and longing together with the dancers themselves. We are trying to fulfill new tasks, like reviewing live-streamed dance premiers or supporting the artists in the best way we can. 

The ITI – UNESCO International Dance Day 2020 includes a message for the world. South African choreographer and dancer Gregory Vuyani Maqoma, tells us all: “We are living through unimaginable tragedies, in a time that I could best describe as the post-human era. More than ever, we need to dance with purpose, to remind the world that humanity still exists.

This message was written before Corona struck the world, and Gregory Vuyani Maqoma is aiming at the global catastrophes of our time: migration, conflicts, climate change, as well as the refusal to meet them with relevant measures. On top of all these, comes Corona. And his words become even more relevant as he continues:

Dance is freedom, and through our found freedom, we must free others from the entrapments they face in different corners of the world. Dance is not political but becomes political because it caries in its fibre a human connection and therefore responds to circumstances in its attempt to restore human dignity.

I agree. We, the critics of the world, agree.

Margareta Sörenson,

dance and theatre critic President of the IATC