BetontancBETONTANC (“Concrete Dance”) was founded in 1990 by theatre director Matjaž Pograjc who gathered together people of roughly the same age from different backgrounds – musicians, dancers, actors, costume and stage designers – and through years became the main Slovene theatre-dance sensation.

The group was formed as a reaction to high intellectual and conceptual art works in the eighties as Pograjc states:

“I am not an anti-intellectual, but I stand against pseudo-intellectuals who are rolling like dogs in their own verbal shit”.

Since then the exploration of BETONTANC was focused on the physicality of the human body and its correspondence with elements which bound the freedom of movement. Thus what moves the protagonists could be either infantile and ridiculous or brutal and violent, however audience is always confronted with the breath taking presence of realness.

Betontanc performances:

People who limp think they are closer to flying than those who can walk.
Franz Kafka

We always hope that whatever happens we can always return home. But we do not know if there will be any space at home for us to return to. Logistical space is disappearing. The end of this century is an era of people without space, of disappearance and emigration, and of refugees and wanderers.

Betontanc is a group that travels the world giving performances, changing countries more often than they change their shoes as good old B. Brecht would have said. The group themselves come from a country newly engraved on the maps of Europe, and whose exact location is really known by few people. Most have no idea about it: somewhere near…, close to…, borders on…, used to be a part of… This is a blank spot experience within which the story can start wherever and whenever.

Betontanc performances are caught in the snare of the tale. Through the experience of movement they enter a borderland between the worlds of the palpable and impalpable, but are always direct, and their metaphors hold true. They illustrate violence as an actuality of the world, and tenderness as a state of mind. In their performances they expose the enigmatic character of space, which appears as one of the protagonists: it can be a wall, a sloping track or a labyrinth penetrable only by those that always arrive on time as Walter B. would had said it. Space is the principal cause of conflict and also placation. The stage construction is a world full of barriers and a path that must traversed through a choreographed order of progression. Their stories are blurred geography of the Columbus logic of the world, where new continents can be discovered only through the presupposition of a mistaken map.

The bodies of Betontanc members are compasses that point the way to the map of the human heart.

Irena Štaudohar