A fart-in-the-universe quest to pinpoint utterly sad human behaviour.
A general pessimistic view of the world is the foundation of the company. Humanistic values and common sense seem to be disintegrating, both globally and domestically. The company is however well aware of theatre being a microscopic player in universal contexts, with virtually no significant influence on any larger matters. But the idea of making a contribution for the better is as valid as ever, if ever so marginal. The company therefore humbly defines its ambition as a fart-in-the-universe quest to pinpoint utterly sad human behaviour.
As residents of a rather small country, the company sees no point in communicating to only a local segment representing a large share of common viewpoints and opinions. The company is therefore dedicated to a global arena and determined to exploit tensions within international diversities.
“Jo Strømgren is the Thor Heyerdahl of dance. Just like an explorer he throws himself uninhibitedly between various mental landscapes, curiously investigating humanity’s loss of direction and its need to create contexts.”
The artistic ambition
The artistic ambition has always been to present intriguing contexts. Provocation most often leads to rejection and cuddling leads nowhere, but in between there are many ways of tricking people to see, admit and reflect upon uncomfortable and important issues. Universal communication across borders can often be seen as a utopian cliché, but the attempt and the possible achievement do not necessarily have to involve an artistic compromise. Geographical and cultural competence is necessary, as well as an intelligent approach to chosen subjects of scrutiny. Sharp edges can even become sharper if the inter-cultural effort is taken seriously. The company’s success in 50 countries with controversial performances have proven this ambition to be legitimate.
Method and techniques
The company does not follow a defined method, but seeks to assimilate existing techniques of storytelling and melt this together in a particular style where the personal viewpoint is given maximum priority. Message is more important than form. However, the company is dedicated to exploring new techniques absent in general theatre. As a consequence, the particular research on abstract languages has become somewhat of a company trademark.
The profile is of an independent company. The principle of being small but efficient is important. Likewise to maintain flexibility, ability to surprise, and not to forget the everlasting question of taking artistic risks. Increasing credibility and status in the international arena has given the company many a chance to become an institutional body. The negative sides of such firm and conventional establishment have however been rejected. Independency does not however imply any lack of professionalism and competence. Rather the contrary.