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© Estudio Elgozo

»When I saw the dance for the first time in a youtube video I said to myself, something very strong must happen to this men in order for them to move like this.« Leonor Maldonado, Filmmaker

About the production

Danza y Frontera/Dance and Border is the latest creation by the choreographer and performer Amanda Piña and represents Part Four of the series »Endangered Human Movements«.

This work is inspired by a dance from the region around Matamoros in the state of Tamaulipas – the borderlands between Mexico and the USA – that is still performed today in the context of extreme violence, drug trafficking and neoliberal exploitation. The roots of the dance from Matamoros, as it is presented by a group of performers under the direction of Rodrigo de la Torre, can be traced back to the »Danza de Conquista«, a dance that the Spanish crown imported from previous wars of conquest and which articulates its racist and colonialist world view – in which, for example, the indigenous population was forced to take the role of a subject race and people. At the same time, ancient, pre-Hispanic dance forms can also be detected in the »Danza de Conquista«.

In its present-day form, Piña claims, despite the brutal history of its origins, this dance can nevertheless »be seen as a form of resistance against colonial and later neoliberal forces«.

»A borderland is a vague and undetermined place created by the emotional residue of an unnatural boundary«, Piña says, quoting the American author Gloria Evangelina Anzaldúa. »This country finds itself in a constant state of transition. This is where the atravesados live: the perverts, the weirdos the restless, the mixed race, the undead: those who go back and forth crossing the borders of ›normal people‹.«

In Danza y Frontera, Amanda Piña creates a mystical space in which levels of time dissolve, colonial narratives return and combine with hip-hop culture.

Danza y Frontera (Tanz und Grenze) is produced by nadaproductions, co-produced by Tanzquartier Wien and is funded by the City of Vienna (Kulturabteilung der Stadt Wien) and the Austrian Federal Ministry for Arts, Culture, the Civil Service and Sport, Section IV – Arts and Culture.

Hosted by PACT Zollverein for the Ruhrtriennale.

Audio introduction

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