Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker

After studying dance at Mudra, Béjart’s school in Brussels and at the Dance Department of NYU’s School of the Arts, choreographer Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker (BE) started her career with Fase, four movements to the music of Steve Reich. She founded her company Rosas in 1983. The company borrowed its name from the production Rosas danst Rosas, created the same year. These first two productions were an instantaneous international breakthrough for the choreographer and would give Belgium a prominent place in the dance landscape. From 1992 until 2007, De Keersmaeker was resident choreographer at La Monnaie, the Brussels opera house. In 1995 Rosas and La Monnaie jointly set up the international educational project P.A.R.T.S., Performing Arts Research and Training Studios, directed by De Keersmaeker. Today the dance school, which offers a four-year curriculum, houses talented students from all over the world. De Keersmaeker set the tone of Rosas’ work with her characteristic dance vocabulary and tightly structured choreographies. From the very beginning her choreography has focused on the relation between music and dance. She has selected composers from various historical periods for her work: Monteverdi, Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Bartók, Webern, and Ligeti, but also Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and traditional Indian music. De Keersmaeker has collaborated with living composers such as George Benjamin, Toshio Hosokawa, and Thierry De Mey.

She has a great affinity with Steve Reich’s compositions and has worked with his music in several pieces over the years—Fase (1983), Drumming (1998), and Rain (2001). De Keersmaeker has also left the confines of pure dance and has ventured into the realms of text theater, creating performances that blend the different disciplines: Kassandra, speaking in twelve voices (2004), I said I (1999), and In Real Time (2000). She has also directed operas including Duke Bluebeard’s castle (1998) and Hanjo (2004). The most recent Rosas productions include D’un soir un jour (2006), Steve Reich Evening (2007), Keeping Still—Part 1 (2007), and Zeitung (2008). De Keersmaeker’s work has been distinguished by numerous international awards. She received a Bessie award for sustained achievement/Fase (1999) and for Rosas danst Rosas (1987) and she was recently awarded Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres (2008). 

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