We always want to find our own new universe outside of ourselves, but perhaps, there are inner universes to look for

We always want to find our own new universe outside of ourselves, but perhaps, there are inner universes to look for

A short conversation with Rauli Dahlberggel, the artistic director of Race Horse Company (FIN) about circus, creation and the production O’DD that Trafó House is hosting on 20-21 April.

Why have you choosen to pursue circus arts?
I think doing circus came really naturally for me because of my gymnastics background. Circus is my vocabulary. I like playing around with movements instead of sticking to strict rules; for example, there is a way of doing the perfect salto, but in circus what you want to do is disintegrate it. There is a lot going on with objects, too - circus artistry is basically playing with things like children do. After all, you’re most creative when you have fun with something and just go for it. As a kid, I just loved spinning around until my head got completely dizzy and i got this feeling… like I was out of context. Eversince my world has been about spinning my head any way possible, so what I did when I was four years old now ends up on stage.

What can circus and movement express that words cannot?
Movement and circus are really real, you cannot fake them. The audience sees what is happening right there and then, and they recognise the amount of effort and daring that has gone into it. I think circus can give something other performing arts cannot and that is the feeling of danger. Here if something goes wrong, the performer can actually get hurt and the show might stop, unlike in prozaic theatre where the play can continue even if there is a mess up with the text. So the element of risk is really there, it’s very concrete, something we all understand. That’s why I think that the tension is usually much greater in circus shows than in theatre shows.

You spent 8 years working on this show. What were your experiences during this time?
It has been a long journey... O’DD took too many years to make. My thoughts were at some point that it was never going to happen. I was doing many projects back then and didn’t have the time to work on my solo. Eventually, I had to learn to say no to things. But I also think this show needed eight years to happen because I needed to grow up as person to be able to pull it off. Doing a solo show was a big challenge for me. I was young when i started this ambitious project, and I thought it would be easy to make a one-hour show, but then I would run out of ideas on how to proceed and wouldn’t trust myself to go further and deeper into the ideas I had. It’s a learning process.

What was the idea behind O’DD?
In the beginning, I wanted to do a circus show with science fiction, and one of my main goals was to tell the story just through movement and circus skills. It was hard though because tricks on their own don’t tell you anything. so I had to study movement, rethink how I move and create circus. I realised that besides showcasing a series of tricks, there must be a governing idea in the back of your head the whole time. This show talks a lot about our evolutionary need to master or create something and how we often take learning for granted. I didn’t have kids when I started this project, but now I do and Isee how many repetitions you have to do before you are able to lift a pen! Even the simplest action takes thousands and millions of repetitions, and in this sense, all actions are tricks. I think that everything can be taught to the body. That was one main objective: to tell the story of how by playing with things we can learn and evolve.

The show expresses some concern of what this evolution may lead to…
While creating, I imagined humanity trying to take control of the world and getting too greedy by its own power. To me it seems we always want to find our own new universe outside of ourselves, but perhaps there are inner universes to look for. We have to become a better species to even think about space travelling let alone conquering space.

O’DD is performed on 20 and 21 April in Trafó House.
A description of the event can be found:here. 
Facebook event: here. 
Tickets: here.
Box Office opening hours:
  • Main hall performance days: 5 pm - 10 pm
  • studio and club performance days: 5 pm - 8:30 pm
  • other days: 5pm - 8 pm
Trafó Gallery opening hours:
  • Performance days: 4-10pm.
  • Opening hours: Tuesday - Sunday: 4pm-7pm.
  • Closed on Mondays.

  • The Trafó Kortárs Művészetek Háza Nonprofit Kft. works in the maintance of Budapest Főváros Önkormányzata.

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