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Biennale Danza 2016

Maguy Marin

Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement

The award


The Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement in Dance for 2016 is to be awarded to choreographer Maguy Marin with the following motivation:

For her research through the body and space, which from one experience to the next has built an atlas of discoveries in which the meaning of art has revealed the complexity of contemporary man, creating relationships between the paths of man and the spaces necessary for choreographic research.

The body of dance and the sense of openness to the world, like a continuous excavation through primary elements such as light, time, matter and sound. A political body then, in the sense of a continuous and renewed presence through the body, a ceaseless exploration where things flow one into the other.

… “For one thing after other will grow clear, Nor shall the blind night rob thee of the road, To hinder thy gaze on nature's Farthest-forth. Thus things for things shall kindle torches new”...

De rerum natura, Lucretius
In the past the acknowledgment for Lifetime Achievement in Dance was awarded to Merce Cunningham (1995), Carolyn Carlson (2006), Pina Bausch (2007), Jirí Kylián (2008), William Forsythe (2010), Sylvie Guillem (2012), Steve Paxton (2014), and Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker (2015).

Biographical notes

Maguy Marin was born in Toulouse 1951. Following her studies at the Conservatory in Toulouse and her advanced work with Nina Vyroubova in Paris, from 1968 to 1972 Maguy Marin joined the corps de ballet of the Strasbourg Opera. In 1972, she was in Brussels at Béjart’s Mudra, where she participated in forming the Chandra group, which gathers the talents in the school under the direction of Micha van Hoecke. From 1974 to 1977 she was a full member of Béjart’s company, Les ballets du XXe siècle, for which she not only performed in the repertory choreographies and new works, but also participated as a choreographer in the creation of Yu-Ku-Ri (1976).

In 1977 she returned to Brussels to work with Daniel Ambash, with whom she founded the Ballet-Théatre de l’Arche, which in 1984 would become the Compagnie Maguy Marin. The company was initially the resident company of the Maison de la Culture in Créteil, later the Centre Chorégraphique National de Créteil e du Val-de-Marne; but in 1998, the company moved to the new residence of the Centre Chorégraphique National in Rillieux-la-Pape, Lyon. The choreographer transformed the company’s new maison into a cultural hub open to citizens. Marin remained there through 2011, when she felt to the need to work independently with her own company, and moved for three years to her native city, Toulouse. In 2015 she returned to the region of Lyon with the company, and settled down in RAMDAM, a place dedicated to artistic creation to carry out an ambitious project: RAMDAM, an art centre. While choreographing all the production of her own company, Maguy Marin has also created works for the Dutch National Ballet, the Nederlands Dans Theater 3, the Paris Opera, the Lyon Opera (where she was resident choreographer from 1992 to 1994).

Many of Maguy Marin’s productions have become famous - Babel Babel (1976), Cendrillon (1985), Coups d'état (1988), Made in France (1992), Aujourd'hui peut-être (1996), Quoi qu'il en soit (1999), Pièces détachées (2002), Umwelt (2004), Turba (2007), Salves (2010), but it is May B, a production inspired by the literature of Samuel Beckett and created in 1981, that is still considered a masterpiece today, and continues to be performed in France and around the world.

In addition to the acknowledgments she has received in France, she is one of the few non-Americans to have been granted the Dance Festival Award in 2003, while in 2008 she won the Bessie Award in New York for Umwelt, presented at the Joyce Theatre. Her latest creation is BiT (2014).


Biennale Danza 2016
Biennale Danza 2016