“You see it’s like a portmanteau - there are two meanings packed up into one word.” ~ Lewis Carrol – Through the Looking Glass.
Portmanteau is a contemporary circus company from Finland, focused on creating multidisciplinary performances exploring the dialogue between circus and other art forms.
In a constant search for new and poetic aesthetics within the performing arts, Portmanteau was founded as a collaboration between the circus/visual artist Luis Sartori do Vale and the dancer/circus artist Mira Ravald.
It has been touring internationally since 2018, warmly received by both audience and critics alike.
With its first production, the multidisciplinary performance Portmanteau, the company has received the Sirkuksen Lumo Award 2018, as an acknowledgement of the work done to promote Finnish circus arts.
With Piste, piste, piste, they were selected as the ITU Performance 2020. In 2021 they were nominated for the Outstanding Emerging Company category in the International Circus Awards.
LUIS SARTORI DO VALE
Luis is a performing artist, director and visual artist born in Brazil, based in Finland.
After a diploma in Visual Arts (UFMG - Brazil), he graduated from ESAC (Belgium) as a circus artist.
Besides his own projects, he has worked and collaborated with several directors and companies worldwide (such as Kallo Collective, Petri Dish, Archaos, Les 7 Doigts de la Main, Hurjaruuth and WHS), having performed in more than 25 countries.
With his previous works he has received several awards, such as the Special Prize of the Jury in the 35th Festival Mondial du Cirque de Demain, and being a laureate of Circus Next.
In 2023 he became the first circus artist in Finland to be awarded the State's honorary grant and title of 'Artist Professor'.
He’s a co-founder of the company Portmanteau. When not performing, Luis develops works as a visual artist, between illustration, video and photography.
Mira is a performing artist working within contemporary circus, dance and physical theatre. She has graduated as a circus artist from Salpaus Further Education in Lahti, Finland, specializing in tight wire.
With her solo works Mira is interested in exploring the borderline of dance and circus through movement based practices, musicality and poetic motion in search of new and fusion-like perspectives.
Besides performing, Mira develops also projects with video, such as the short dance/ circus film OMI (2020), which has gained international recognition for its experimental kind.
Previously Mira has worked in various theater productions, musicals, dance theatres and afro-cuban performances, in Finland and abroad.
PIMIÖ IS A PERFORMANCE THAT RESPECTS THE MAGIC OF TRADITIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY WITH WARMTH
Performed in Teatteri Union in Helsinki as a collaboration between Portmanteau and WHS, Pimiö is in many ways an exceptional performance in these days.For one, Pimiö doesn’t in its core focus on any contemporary social problem or trigger point. It isn’t even imposing itself in any way or attempting to deliberately seduce the spectator, but yet it captures our attention. Despite of it having a very peaceful pace. At times it’s on the verge of boring, but just then something happens on stage.
THE THEME OF PIMIÖ is traditional analogue photography and black and white photograph’s magical birth. The whole stage and audience area are actually one large and rather dark redtoned darkroom, in which we concretely see the developing of several large format photographs. And because the development and fixing of the image on the paper takes its own time in the different baths of liquids, the overall tempo of the performance is tied to that process.
It can even be said, that the main role in the performance is played by a large size camera obscura, which the photographer André Baumecker and the lighting designer Jere Mönkkönen manipulate. They also take care of developing and presenting the images in front of the audience. Both of them work in a very peaceful manner and they emit a sense of respect and valuing for traditional technique. Of course they are aware of being on stage, but it doesn’t disturb their activities.
The father of the performance’s concept, Luis Sartori do Vale of Portmanteau is in some sense tasked with being an assistant and an object. A small room setting has been created on one side of the stage, where tiny frozen moments of Sartori do Vale’s acting are the objects of photography. The content of the scenes repeats similarly, but little by little the room empties and the scenes get shorter, as the objects of shooting “disappear”.
Portmanteau and WHS both are by origin contemporary circus companies. In Pimiö they don’t exactly use circus techniques, unless we choose to name the disappearance of the photographed objects as such. On the other hand, the whole performance has a particular kind of circassian magic, through which the spectator gets to dive into the overa hundred years old photographic techniques and to see how the photographic oeuvre is created right in front of their eyes in collaboration of the paper, the chemicals and time.
Usually only the experiences of the audience and performers are left after a performance. After Pimiö we have also a bunch of large, exquisite photographic pieces, in which the performance’s warm, but simultaneously slightly mysterious atmosphere and its uniqueness are distilled.
Original article : Demokraatti
PROXIMITY SEPARATES, DISTANCE CONNECTS
During the pandemic, people have become accustomed to safety distances and remote connections. Combining circus art and video manipulation, Perto - the name is Portuguese and means 'near' - ponders imaginatively and inventively how people can be close to each other and far apart at the same time.
Combining live video projections with performances is no longer new, but they are rarely incorporated as an integral part of a show. Perto takes advantage of the video in a way that is reminiscent of the magic of an early silent film.
The characters of Mira Ravald and Luis Sartori do Vale sit back to back to each other in separate tables. But on the screen, they are on the same table, face to face. The body language can simultaneously create two very different impressions!
Despite the physical distance, one might pour wine for the other and then get it on their face. Saku Mäkelä dances on the table dodging himself. Milla Järvinen desperately drags herself after a mug, until she finally reaches it - or does she? The mug, however, is somewhere else.
The tricks do not aim to show a magical illusion, but the audience can enjoy both the trick and how it is done. The concept requires a lot of arranging and millimetre-precise placement of the elements, but the adjusting rather increases the tension than reduces it.
The dance floor episode feels a bit detached from the rest of the performance, even though it fits in with the plot of an accelerating festive evening that ends up in a moody atmosphere. The important letter never gets ready. When the makeup is wiped off, there’s nothing under it.
Visually, Perto follows the same black and white aesthetics from Vale’s and Ravald's previous performance Portmanteau. The glitch-style light of the projections act as flashes of colour. Also Petteri Rajanti's sounds and Rodrigo Borges' lap steel guitar juice up the atmosphere.
Original article : Article_scan_PDF
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
A TOUCH OF CIRCUS MAGIC, WARM HUMOUR AND OVERHEAD PROJECTORS
First of all, it must be said that while Mira Ravald’s and Luis Sartori do Vale’s new contemporary circus work “Piste, piste, piste” is marketed as a performance for children and young audiences, it is just as much - as the best works for children always - an adults' performance.
Sure, the performance is based on the children’s book Três Pontinhos (Three Little Dots) by the author-illustrator Mario Vale, but for the sake of receiving the work, it doesn’t really matter much.
Already in their previous work Portmanteau (2018), Ravald and do Vale used enchantingly old overhead projectors to create the visual look of the performance. Now they have taken the idea forward. In addition to creating an environment and atmosphere, overhead projectors also take events forward and sometimes even turn into performing animals.
Non-verbal Piste, piste, piste is a playful and atmospheric story of growth and change with gentle humour that is captivating. The moon turns into a juggling ball, which becomes a seed, which grows into a line, which becomes a stick, from which grows a musical line, whose note becomes a ball, from which… almost indefinitely.
The changes are small, imaginative and fun. As if surreptitiously, they combine Ravald’s acrobatics and dance with do Vale’s juggling. The skills of both are in no way underlined, but are part of the whole. The performance lives and breathes lightly and effortlessly.
While the whiteness of the stage image is necessary above all because of the light patterns created by the overhead projectors, it also gives the performance a sense of intangibility.
Petteri Rajanti's sound universe and Jere Mönkkönen's lights are such an integral part of the whole that one doesn’t even pay attention to them separately. For their part, they create a fairytale-inspired, exciting, yet safe atmosphere that does not scare even the youngest viewers.
Piste, piste, piste is a lovely little gem enjoyed by viewers of all ages.
Original article : demokraatti.fi
LUIS SARTORI DO VALE'S CIRCUS HAS VISUAL ARTS, MUSIC AND DANCE
Finland-based Luis Sartori do Vale, from Belo Horizonte, has gained a space in the world’s scene of circus arts. In the weekend, he closes the festival (Festival Mundial de Circo) happening in Galpão Cine Horto with his performance Portmanteau. The performance relies also on Mira Ravald, his girlfriend, the light designer Jere Mönkkönen and the musician Antonio Alemanno.
Combining circus, dance, music and visuals, Portmanteau - idealised by Sartori - comes from the fusion of two words. “Many things come together. It is the first time I work with live music, the first time Mira and me are working together, the first time I’m combining visual arts and circus. There are many first times” the Minas Gerais-born explains.
The performance was being created in one year. “The light creation came from the visual forms, firstly with the abstract images that we wanted to bring into the show. At first we were thinking of using a video projector with my drawings. After, we imagined to have an over head projector, which gives space for mistakes. Every time it creates a unique experience. It is cool to bring back this equipment that is not really used anymore” says Sartori.
The other element is the music, composed with an acoustic double bass by the Italian Antonio Alemanno, who in addition to the sound design is responsible also for interpreting it live.
Circus is collaborative art and excites people all over the world, defends Luis. "In January I will premiere a show with an artist from New Zealand” he tells.
Luis Sartori do Vale started to do circus at 18 years old in Belo Horizonte. Having graduated from the University of UFMG in visual arts, he studied in Belgium, lived in France and currently works in Finland.
Luis laments the difficulty of producing shows in Brazil. Because of this, the importance of the festival (Festival Mundial de Circo) taking place in Galpão, he emphasises. “I always try to be present, since the beginning of the event in 2001.”
Pedro Sartori, Luis’ brother, was also participating to the festival by organising workshops. On the 14th of September he opens the Brava Escola de Circo (Brava circus school), dedicated to teach circus arts in Belo Horizonte.
JOÃO PEDRO JUNQUEIRA
Original article : em.com.br
SIRKUKSEN LUMO 2018 PRIZE AWARDED TO PORTMANTEAU
Circusinfo Finland has awarded its annual Sirkuksen Lumo Prize to Mira Ravald and Luis Sartori Do Vale’s show Portmanteau. The award was announced 11th March 2019 at the Thalia Gala, which is an annual event held by the circus, dance and theatre organizations of Finland.
Portmanteau is a multidisciplinary show which includes tightrope dancing, juggling, dance, live music and visual & light art. In their statement the jury considers Portmanteau to be artistically ambitious, stylish and well-polished piece of work that successfully combines different forms of art. Highly talented artists have created a piece that is appealing, warmhearted, innovative, charming and honest, and in which the stage work is skillful and even hypnotic at best. All the different elements, including music and light design, come together in a balanced performance that requires input from every member of the working group.
Portmanteau premiered at Flow Circus in Oulu, Finland 2-4 February 2018. After that it has been performed several times, including at Festival UP! in Belgium, March 2018, at Cirko – Center for New Circus in Helsinki, September 2018 and at Circus Ruska Festival in Tampere, Finland in February 2019. Next the show tours to Annemasse, France, where it can be seen at the Château Rouge, 22-23 March.
The Sirkuksen Lumo Prize is awarded by Circusinfo Finland as an acknowledgement for work done to promote Finnish circus art. It can be granted to a person, group, performance, event or other deed or action that has contributed to the development and prosperity of circus art. The prize was awarded for the first time in 2010.
The Sirkuksen Lumo jury consisted of journalists Annikki Alku, Nina Jääskeläinen and Maria Säkö and artist professor Pirjo Yli-Maunula. Circusinfo Finland’s managing director Lotta Vaulo acted as the jury’s chairperson.
Original article : sirkusinfo.fi
INVENTIVENESS AND JOY OF RE-ENCOUNTER -
FASCINATING DIMENSIONS ARE BEING BORN IN THE CONTEMPORARY CIRCUS PERFORMANCE
In Portmanteau, something new and unseen is being born from traditional circus disciplines.
My soul is being touched with nostalgia when I see the stage full of retro projectors. Or overhead projectors, as my teacher used to call them.
But in this performance they don’t have a dry pedagogic role. On the contrary, we see what kinds of mesmerizing visuality they can be used to create.
In the performance Portmanteau, by Luis Sartori do Vale and Mira Ravald, nothing is as it seems at first. The elements brought together create something completely new.
As a term, portmanteau means a combination of two words, creating a new concept. Like the english words breakfast and lunch make brunch, which is a concept of its own.
The performance Portmanteau deals with sort of the same thing on a physical level. Of classic circus disciplines, juggling and tight wire dancing are being included. They are seen also as such, but their combinations create something new, unseen and undefined.
The wire used in tight wire dancing is shown as a symbolic thread and route of life. On the other hand it is the border uniting and separating the lovers.
The juggler’s juggling balls are being attached to the wire, acting as if being a one-line music sheet, with Antonio Alemanno playing the double bass, reading the ball-notes. Almost in an aleatoric manner. Anyway the music and the soundscape is as bizarre and fascinating as the whole performance. Alemanno’s bass sounds sometime’s even like a jouhikko (traditional Finnish musical instrument).
Portmanteau doesn’t lack inventiveness neither joy of re-encounter. It is full of surprises. I was almost touched into tears when the touching song called Tiet by Laila Kinnunen started to play. At the same time a face is being projected on the background, little by little starting to fade away under all the “lived”.
Sounds quite disconnected in a contemporary circus show, but all this oddness coming around the corner forms an entity, justifying itself and its name.
Feels like traditional circus is being broken up into pieces and then put back together - at first in a way which feels random, but as thought afterwards, into a completely reasonable new genre. As if something is being rehearsed - but it is not about the lack of competence, but the contrary. In order to be able to break, you need to first know well.
And then the overhead projectors. I could have never imagined that they could be used like this. Mesmerizing images and illusions are being created with them.
In the crossfire of the images projected by them, the performers are fascinating like fluttery sea snails or imaginary creatures in a dream world. For a while, I haven’t seen anything as beautiful as this in performances.
If this company remains their open approach to everyday matters and trusts that everything can be done, then anything can happen in the future.
Original article : www.hs.fi
PORTMANTEAU IS A CHARMING COMBINATION OF TIGHT WIRE DANCING, JUGGLING AND OVERHEAD PROJECTORS
Already for a while in contemporary circus, especially in wire and rope acrobatics, one of the aims has been to bring the performances towards dance, where the circus equipment is just one element in the entity, or almost like a partner. Also many juggling performances have approached contemporary dance by their style.
In Portmanteau, by Luis Sartori do Vale and Mira Ravald, premiered in Cirko - Centre For New Circus on Tuesday, both styles are combined in a new and fabulous way.
Portmanteau is a linguistic term meaning a combination of various words, where different words being put together form a new kind of an entity and a meaning.
Portmanteau is exactly about this kind of combining that creates something new.
As a whole the performance is very dance-alike and based on movement. Ravald both dances on and with the wire, but the tight wire acts as well as a base for juggling. Also Sartori do Vale’s juggling is rather contemporary dance combined with juggling as skillful mastering of white balls.
A completely other story is the use of overhead projectors, which I haven’t seen before.
Graphic images are being created on the stage and on the performers’ bodies with five overhead projectors manipulated by the performers, transforming the space and bringing new meanings into the scenes.
The live music created mainly with double bass by Antonio Alemanno binds the entity together and brings the performance strength and sensitivity. Light by Jere Mönkkönen are very subtle but extremely necessary.
Portmanteau is a skillful, beautiful and poetically abstract performance without a clear storyline, but small depictions of encounters and changes between people can be found in the scenes. Here and there sparkles a playfulness that stylishly enlightens the entity.
A small word of warning must though be said. Towards the end of the show the black and white line play of the over head projectors is so strong and pulsating, that it might cause a migraine. For that moment the eyes can be closed, because you shouldn’t in any case miss seeing the rest of the show because of that.
Original article : demokraatti.fi
* english translation below
AU CROISEMENT DU CIRQUE ET DES ARTS VISUELS, PORTMANTEAU A PROPOSÉ UN CHASSÉ-CROISÉ "EQUILIBRISQUE" AU FESTIVAL UP!
Est-il besoin de présenter l’Espace Catastrophe, le Centre International de Création des Arts du Cirque, projet culturel pluriel et multifacettes entièrement dédié aux pratiques circassiennes contemporaines. Dans ce contexte, du 12 au 25 mars inclus, « Le Festival Up !, Biennale Internationale du Cirque » a pris ses quartiers dans 13 lieux de spectacles à Bruxelles dont, entre autres, Le 140 – Wolubilis – le Théâtre Marni – l’Espace Catastropheetc. Une multitude d’artistes internationaux s’y sont produits et nous ont offert 30 spectacles dont 8 Créations « UP! » et 10 Premières belges, un régal pour les yeux …
Le Festival Up ! met le cirque contemporain à l’honneur. Celui-ci rassemble diverses disciplines s’inspirant du Théâtre, du Cinéma Burlesque, de la danse, des Arts Plastiques etc. Les artistes y expérimentent différents langages, de nouvelles gestuelles au travers de techniques acrobatiques parfois risquées.
Ce 23 mars, j’ai voulu découvrir PORTMANTEAU au Théâtre Marni à Ixelles et je n’ai pas été déçue (je salue au passage l’excellent accueil du Théâtre qui nous ont installées mon amie et moi-même dans la salle, un peu avant l’arrivée des spectateurs). Encore merci à eux.
PORTMANTEAU a été créé par Luis Sartori do Vale, né en 1982 et Mira Ravald. Luis nous vient de Belo Horizonte au Brésil et vit actuellement à Helsinki en Finlande.
Dans l’univers de PORTMANTEAU, Mira Ravald, équilibriste, se promène sur un fil d’acier tendu entre les balles du jongleur Luis à travers un chassé-croisé de leurs corps qui se glissent sous d’intrigantes images projetées sur grand écran par d’anciens projecteurs. On se retrouve au croisement du cirque et des arts visuels et c’est juste magnifique pour les yeux. Pour ce faire, ils sont assistés par Jere Mönkkönen mais tous trois déplacent tour à tour les projecteurs au fur et à mesure de l’avancement du spectacle.
Ce joli ballet parfaitement orchestré ne serait pas pareil sans la contrebasse de Antonio Alemanno qui ajoute cette tension et ce suspense auprès des spectateurs fascinés par la beauté de cette performance durant laquelle on sent une grande complicité entre Luis et Mira.
Quelle superbe prestation.
Merci à eux quatre de nous avoir régalés.
Souhaitons-leur de continuer sur cette lancée. Pour ma part, s’ils repassent en Belgique, je serai des leurs.
Par LES CLICS DE MANUGO PHOTOGRAPHY
Original article : Branchés Culture
AT THE CROSSING OF CIRCUS AND VISUAL ARTS, PORTMANTEAU OFFERED A "BALANCED" CROSSOVER AT THE FESTIVAL UP!
It’s necessary to present Espace Catastrophe, the International Center for the Creation of Circus Arts, a plural and multifaceted cultural project entirely dedicated to contemporary circus practices. In this context, from the 12th to the 25th March, the “Festival Up! International Circus Biennial" took place in 13 venues in Brussels, including, among others, the 140, Wolubilis, Théâtre Marni, Espace Catastrophe, etc. A multitude of international artists performed there and offered us 30 performances, including 8 premieres “UP!” and 10 Belgian premieres, a feast for the eyes…
The Festival Up! puts the contemporary circus in the spotlight. It brings together various disciplines inspired by Theater, the Burlesque Cinema, Dance, Visual Arts, etc. The artists experiment with different languages, new gestures through acrobatic techniques, sometimes risky.
This March 23 I wanted to discover PORTMANTEAU at the Marni Theater in Ixelles and I was not disappointed (I take the opportunity to thank the excellent reception of the theater, who installed my friend and myself in the room a little before the spectators arrive). Thanks again to them.
PORTMANTEAU was created by Luis Sartori do Vale and Mira Ravald. Luis comes from Belo Horizonte, Brazil, and currently lives in Helsinki, Finland.
In the universe of PORTMANTEAU, Mira Ravald, a balancing artist, walks on a tight steel wire between the juggling balls of the juggler Luis, through a crossover of their bodies, sliding under intriguing images projected on a big screen by old overhead projectors. We find ourselves at the crossroad of circus and visual arts and it's just beautiful for the eyes. To do this they are assisted by Jere Mönkkönen. The three of them move the projectors in turns as the show progresses.
This beautiful ballet perfectly orchestrated would not be the same without the double bass by Antonio Alemanno, which adds tension and suspense to the spectators, fascinated by the beauty of this performance during which we feel a great bond between Luis and Mira.
What a superb performance.
Thanks to the four of them for having treated us.
Let’s wish they continue on this momentum. For my part, if they return to Belgium, I will be with them.
LES CLICS DE MANUGO PHOTOGRAPHY
Original article : Branchés Culture
* English translation below
KAIPUU JA KAIHO LÄMPIMÄSSÄ VALOKEILASSA
Hiljaisuus-festivaalilla kypsytelty teos sai kantaesityksensä. Portmanteaussa tarinaa kertovat valot, äänet ja kehot.
Flow Productions -tuotantoryhmä toi jälleen Ouluun kiinnostavan sirkuskantaesityksen. Portmanteau-termi merkitsee kahdesta sanasta yhdistettyä uudissanaa.
Puhtaan visuaalinen leikittely limittyy haikeasävyisiin kohtauksiin, joissa ihmiset hakevat yhteyttä toisiinsa. Tuloksena on kontakti tai torjunta - tai niiden välinen jännite.
Riemastuttavassa ja samalla riipaisevassa episodissa Mira Ravaldin hahmo heittelee sinnikkäästi palloja ja tulee lähelle, mutta purkkaa jauhavan Luis Sartori do Valen hervottoman rento jongleeraus ottaa kopin mistä huvittaa.
Toisinaan roolit vaihtuvat, ja Sartori do Vale saa seurata etäämpää Ravaldin tanssia, joka soljuu välillä mietiskelevänä, välillä yltyy keimailevaksi ja itsetyytyväiseksi.
Toista milloin uhmataan, milloin jäljitellään. Silloinkin, kun yhteys näyttää löytyvän, toiselta saatetaan vetää jalat alta. Hellästi vai manipuloivasti?
Painavista teemoista huolimatta kerronta ei ole totista. Tarkasti ajoitetut huumorin pilkahdukset tahdittavat kokonaisuutta.
Äänet ja valon yhteys
Antonio Alemannon kontrabasso, sormipiano ja sämpläykset lämmittävät dramaattisinakin teoksen ilmapiiriä. Muusikon olisi suonut olevan enemmänkin läsnä näyttämöllä.
Portmanteaun ilmeessa keskeinen, viehättävän retrohenkinen oivallus on piirtoheitinten käyttö.
Yksinkertaisin keinoin tila täytetään arvaamattomalla väreilyllä tai pyörryttävällä geometrialla, ja toisen kasvot pyyhitään pois melankolisten ikivihreiden säestyksellä.
Myös nuorallakävelijän vaijerilla on esityksessä monipuolinen rooli. Se toimii esiintyjiä yhdistävänä ja erottavana rajaviivana; alustana näyttämötaikuutta lähestyvälle minimalistiselle jongleeraukselle; miimikon köytenä, jolla voi nostaa vaikka kuun taivaalle.
Jere Mönkkösen valosuunnittelu yhdistää hallitusti kylmää ja lämmintä valkoista - ja pimeyttä.
Näin Portmanteaun demoversion vuoden 2017 Hiljaisuus-festivaaleilla Kittilän Kaukosessa. Hiljaisuuden residenssissä työstetty, tuolloin jo vakuuttavan valmis teos viehätti kokeilunhalullaan ja moninaisuudellaan.
Oulun kantaesityksessä pohti välillä, onko kokonaisuutta hiottu jo liikaakin.
Valven salikin on tila toki persoonattomampi kuin aikaa nähnyt työväentalo, mutta myös esitys oli demoon verrattuna estetisoitu ja sliipattu.
Pelkistetymmässä kerronnassa myös piirtoheitinten siirtely ja muu välttämätön tekninen säätäminen tuntuu vievän turhaa aikaa ja huomiota.
LONGING AND NOSTALGIA IN A WARM LIMELIGHT
The performance hatched in Silence-festival premiered. In Portmanteau, lights, sounds and bodies are telling the story.
Flow Productions brought yet another premiere of a circus performance to Oulu. The term portmanteau means a new word combined from two words.
Purely visual playfulness interlaces with melancholically charged scenes, where people seek connection to each other. The result is a contact - or a tension in between.
In an exhilarating yet heart-rending scene, Mira Ravald’s character relentlessly throws balls and comes close, but, while chewing bubble gum, Luis Sartori do Vale takes a catch whenever desired, in a outrageously relaxed juggling.
At times the roles change and Sartori do Vale gets to distantly follow Ravald’s dance, which sometimes flows contemplative, sometimes escalates to being coquettish and complacent.
The other one is being opposed, at times followed. Even when it seems the connection is found, one might have the carpet pulled out under the feet. Tenderly or in a manipulative manner?
Despite the heavy themes, the storytelling isn’t serious. Precisely timed glimpses of humour set rhythm for the entity.
The connection of sound and light
Antonio Alemanno’s double bass, kalimba and samplings warm up the performance’s atmosphere, even when being dramatic. The musician could have been more present on stage.
In Portmanteau’s visuality, the central and charmingly retro vibed realisation is the use of overhead projectors.
In simple ways the space is filled with unexpected vibration or vertiginous geometry, and the other one’s face is wiped away, accompanied by melancholic ever green melodies.
Also the tight rope dancer’s wire has a versatile role. It acts as the uniting and separating borderline; as a base for minimalistic juggling that approaches stage magic; as a mime artist’s rope that can be used to raise the moon to the sky.
In a controlled manner, Jere Mönkkönen’s light design combines cold and warm white - and darkness.
From a demo to the premiere
I saw a demo version of Portmanteau in the 2017 Silence festival, in Kaukonen, Kittilä.
The piece, that was being in creation in the Silence residency and already then an impressively ready work, charmed with its urge of experimenting and its versatility.
In the Oulu premiere I wondered if the entity had been even too much polished.
The Valve hall is, of course, less distinctive as the (Kittilä's) old community hall, but performance was also made more aesthetic and polished compared to the demo.
Within the more plain storytelling, the manipulation of overhead projectors and other inevitable technical adjusting seemed to take too much time and attention.
Original article : Lapinkansa.jpg
A MOON IS BEING BORN WITH AN OVERHEAD PROJECTOR, DRIVEN BY A CIRCUS ARTIST - CIRCUS PERFORMANCE’S PREMIERE IN OULU
Luis Sartori do Vale from Brazil and Mira Ravald from Finland adventure in between graphic lines, accompanied by a double bass.
The Finland-based Brazilian circus and visual artist Luis Sartori do Vale and the Finnish (tight wire) dancer Mira Ravald wanted to try what could be created out of the synergy of two artists and various art forms. During this week here in Oulu they finalized their performance Portmanteau, where overhead projectors meet circus arts.
The name of the performance is french, but as a linguistic term it is english. It means, for example, the combination of two words, from which a new concept is born. Like brunch is a combination of the english words breakfast and lunch.
The red line of the visual performance with no dialogue is connection and its breaking, the authors tell.
- Encounter, fairwell, re-encounter and saying good bye, Luis lists.
Also present on stage is the musician and sound designer Antonio Alemanno, from Italy, and many overhead projectors. The live images made with the projectors are being projected on the space and bodies, accompanied by the warm sounds of a double bass.
Original article : kaleva.fi
* English translation below
HIENOKSI HIOTTUA KINEETTISTÄ SIRKUSTA
Portmanteau-teoksessa kaikki ei ole sitä, miltä näyttää. Teos luo illuusioita ja vaihtaa nopeasti näkökulmaa ja visuaalista tilaa. Se yllättää ja ilahduttaa katsojia käänteillään.
Tekijät Luis Sartori do Vale ja Mira Ravald rakentavat ja purkavat näyttämöllä monikerroksista kineettisen taiteen kuvastoa. Liikkuvia mobiileja osia ovat nyt esiintyjät, vesimaljat ja piirtoheittimet.
Portmanteau tuo kuvallisilla trikeillään hetkittäin mieleen jopa roolihenkilöiden alitajuntaan tunkeutuvan Christopher Nolanin elokuvan Inception, jossa maailmat pyörähtävät ympäri unen logiikalla.
Ideasta edetään toiseen, ja silti mustavalkea teos on tyylillisesti ehyt. Yleisö saa jakaa tekijöiden mielikuvituksen, lapsekkaan kokeilunhalun ja leikkimielen, jotka nojaavat vahvaan sirkustaiteen osaamiseen.
Wau-efektejä tarjoavat kaksikon viehkeä tanssiduetto, Mira Ravaldin lattaritekniikka nuoralla ja Luis Sartori do Valen pallojongleeraus.
Portmanteaussa puhdas käsityö yhdistyy kirkkaisiin ideoihin ja konmaritettuun tekniikkaan. Optinen efekti, jossa esiintyjät kadottavat ääriviivansa ja muuttuvat sivuvalossa kuin nesteeksi, saa haukkomaan henkeä. Upeaa tieteisfantasiaa ja optista harhamaa.
Portmanteaussa kineettinen taide, sirkus, Antonio Alemannon kontrabasismi ja visuaaliset efektit alkavat toisiaan, niin kuin Oulussa sanotaan.
FINELY POLISHED KINETIC CIRCUS
In the performance Portmanteau everything is not as it seems. The performance creates illusions and quickly changes perspective and visual space. It surprises and delights the public with its turns.
The authors Luis Sartori do Vale and Mira Ravald build and deconstruct the multi-layered imagery of kinetic art on stage. The performers, water bowls and overhead projector are being the mobile parts.
At times, with its visual tricks Portmanteau reminds me of Christopher Nolan’s movie Inception where the worlds turn upside down in a logic of a dream, invading in the characters’ minds.
They proceed from one idea to another, but yet the black and white performance is complete by style. The audience gets to share the performers’ imagination, naive urge of experimenting and playful minds that rely on strong skills of circus arts.
Wow-effects are being brought by the duet’s enchanting dance moment, Mira Ravald’s latin technique on the wire and Luis Sartori do Vale’s juggling with balls.
In Portmanteau the pure handicraft is combined with bright ideas and a KonMari Method-like technique. The optical effect where the performers lose their contours and turn as if into liquid in the side lights is breathtaking. Fabulous sci-fi and optical illusion.
In Portmanteau kinetic art, circus, Antonio Alemanno’s double bass playing and visual effects come together.
Original article : Kaleva.jpg
TWO PERFORMANCES OF LONG CREATION WERE PRESENTED IN THE OPENING OF SILENCE FESTIVAL
Overhead projectors have never been used for such a beautiful cause.
Wild and imaginative images are projected on the walls of the Kaukonen community hall. A dancing woman and a juggling man melt the light given by the overhead projectors into their own movement. In twenty minutes I don’t even remember to take notes or, let alone, watch my clock.
This year’s Silence festival was started with the Finnish dancer and circus artist Mira Ravald and the Brazilian circus artist Luis Sartori do Vale with their performance Portmanteau. Ravald’s and Sartori do Vale’s performance got strength from music played by the Italian Antonio Alemanno with his double bass.
The performance seen in Kaukonen was a sneak peek of a half ready work, so it was a so called work in progress. The Helsinki-based couple has worked on their show during this whole year and it shall be ready in February, when it will be presented in Oulu. The ready show will take place in a bigger space, the light design will change and the visuality of the show will be more clean and pure, the duet describes. In addition, at least during a part of the show, Ravald will be dancing on a tight wire.
- I would like to present also the ready work here next summer, says Sartori, delighted of Kaukonen and Lapland.
Sartori do Vale tells that he likes working with hand made things and thus wondered, how could light effects be made without technology. He thought of overhead projectors, that he uses to manipulate different transparencies and pouring different liquids on them.
- This performance was partially a test. We have been exploring a lot with different kinds of liquids, water, oil and soap, Sartori do Vale tells.
As one of the inspirations, Sartori do Vale names the famous Rorschach inkblot test - and the effect created by the transparencies do surely resemble it.
Both Ravald and Sartori are familiar faces in Kaukonen from last summer. Sartori do Vale performed in the Silence festival already for the third time, Ravald has previously been a festival guest. This time they spent a few days in Kaukonen. Thursday was a day off, which was spent seeing other performances and enjoying the Finnish summer and nature, and on Friday they already headed back South.
This time there wasn’t a storm like last year, instead the opening night was perfect, sunny and warm.
- This light, I love it, and I love the cozy atmosphere of the people here, Sartori do Vale sighs after his Wednesday’s performance.
Original article : kittilalehti.jpg
* English translation below
YHTEYDET SYNTYVÄT NUOTTI NUOTILTA
Hiljaisuus-festivaali tarjoaa aitiopaikan monitaiteellisuuteen. Uutuusteoksissa kohtaavat musiikki, sirkus ja visuaalisuus.
Hiljaisuus-festivaalin antiin kuuluu jälleen tuoreinta nykysirkusta ja musiikkia kansainvälisiltä osaajilta. Tänä vuonna teoksissa näkyy kenties aiempaakin kirkkaammin eri taiteenalojen tasavertaisuus.
Festivaaliin on vanhastaan kuulunut mahdollisuus tutustua Hiljaisuus-residenssissä työstettyihin tai muuten vasta valmisteilla oleviin teoksiin.
Nyt Kaukosen työväentalolla avajaisissa nähdyt work-in-progress-teokset, Lauri Sallisen Solitude sekä Mira Ravaldin ja Luis Sartori do Valen Portmanteau, olisivat käyneet täysin valmiista.
Portmanteaun episodeja sitoivat yhteen retrofuturistinen ilme sekä avoimesti mutta alleviivaamatta käsitellyt kohtaamisen ja kohtaamattomuuden teemat.
Seitsemän vanhaa piirtoheitintä rakentavat hypnoottisen maailman. Kalvojen yksinkertainen grafiikka leiskahtaa psykedeeliseksi op-taiteeksi, ja toisiaan hylkivien nesteiden laavalamppuestetiikka kertaa esiintyjien vuorovaikutusta.
Yksinäinen heijastus herää henkiin Mira Ravaldin tanssittamaksi kuuksi, ja valosäleikkö kartoittaa kehojen korkeuskäyriä. Niin visuaalisuudessa kuin liikeilmaisussakin tietty kaoottisuus yhdistyy kiihkeyteen ja päämäärätietoisuuteen.
Luis Sartori do Valen rakentama hahmo jongleeraa itsetyytyväisenä ja sokeana, piittaamatta sen paremmin palloista kuin Ravaldin yrityksestä ottaa kontaktia. Antonio Alemannon vahva kontrabasso on lämpimästi läsnä.
Piirtoheitinten leikkisä nostalgisuus ja välitön vuorovaikutus esiintyjien kanssa keventävät hienosti teoksen tummia, synkkiäkin sävyjä. (…)
CONNECTIONS ARE BORN NOTE BY NOTE
Silence festival offers a first row seat into multidisciplinary art. Music, circus and visuality meet in the new performances.
Silence festival offers again the most fresh contemporary circus and music from international makers. This year, the equality of different art fields was seen clearer in the performances than before.
As part of the festival, there has been a chance to get to know performances that are being in creation in the Silence residency.
Now the works-in-progress seen in the Kaukonen community hall, Lauri Sallinen’s Solitude and Mira Ravald’s and Luis Sartori do Vale’s Portmanteau, could have been completely ready performances.
Portmanteau’s episodes were bond together by a retro futuristic visuality and themes of encounter and dis-encounter, that were dealt with openly, yet not underlining.
Seven old overhead projectors build up a hypnotic world. The graphic of simple transparencies flames into psychedelic op-art, and lava lamp like aesthetic of the repelling liquids revises the interaction of the performers.
A solemn reflection comes to life as a moon, danced by Mira Ravald, and the light trellis maps the countour of the bodies. A certain kind of chaos combines with eagerness and sense of direction, both in visuality and in movement expression.
The character built by Luis Sartori do Vale juggles self-satisfied and blind, neglecting both the balls and Ravald’s attempts of taking contact. Antonio Alemanno’s double bass is warmly present.
The playful nostalgia of the overhead projectors and the direct interactions with the performers elegantly lightens up the performance’s dark, even gloomy tones. (…)
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
PISTE, PISTE, PISTE
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