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Swiss choreographer impresses Irish ballet audiences

A scene from Philippe Saire's production, 'La Haine de la Musique' staged at the Zuercher Theaterhaus in May 2000 Keystone Archive

A new ballet choreographed by a Swiss is receiving an enthusiastic reception in the Irish Republic. "A Question of Distance" is later to be performed in Lausanne, the home base of the choreographer, Philippe Saire.

The ballet’s world première in Dublin was hailed by one newspaper critic as the best performance he had seen given by the Dance Theatre of Ireland (DTI).

Saire is the artistic director of his own company in Lausanne, which he has taken on tours of over 100 cities in Europe, North America and Asia since it was formed in 1986. “A Question of Distance” marks the first time he has choreographed a company not his own.

With a cast of seven dancers, the ballet is described by DTI as “a playful deliberation on the politics and poetry of personal space, where closeness is defined by intent and ‘no touching’ has a sensual delight”.

It features music by Nat King Cole, Marin Marais, Karl Friedrich Abel and Corelli – but it also includes scenes which are performed in silence.

“A Question of Distance” ends its tour of the Irish Republic on May 4 and will be performed later this year at the Lausanne festival of contemporary dance.

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