Thursday, November 02, 2006

After The Curtain: Washington-Based Turkish-Egyptian-German-American Choreographer Dances Her Way From A Divided Europe To A Unifying 21st Century

"Through dance, I seek what Isaiah Berlin refers to as an 'awareness of the deep currents' - a comprehension of the connection between all things, an awareness of the present as well as that which transcends time and space. The paths along this quest are numerous (each culture and each time period has its own variant of the theme). To embrace all of these approaches is to embrace nothing less than our humanity, our common journey on this planet of existence." (Divided Berlin-born choreographer, Nejla Yatkin)

For People With Wings

Winner of the Outstanding Contemporary Choreography Prize from the Vaslav Nijinsky Dance Festival, Kyiv, Ukraine, 2002.

Echoes Of Hope For Those Still On The Ground

Inspired by the poems of Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke and the introductory verses of Wim Wender's Der Himmel ueber Berlin (Wings of Desire, 1987) by the contemporary Austrian writer Peter Handke. [Mr Handke was a leading European intellectual opposing the NATO bombardment and isolation of Serbia, in the late 1990s].

"Within this work we are shown the passage of one life and through it the passage of all lives (from the beginning to end to beginning). This conveys a desire to feel and celebrate humanity, and, at the same time, a longing to transcend." (Divided Berlin-born choreographer, Nejla Yatkin)

Ms Yatkin was named as Dance Magazine's "Top 25 to Watch in 2005". The Washington, D.C.-based choreographer and dancer received her masters in Dance and Choreography from "Die Etage" -- the Performing Arts Academy in Berlin, Germany, the European Union. For the past five years, she has been a Professor of Dance at the University of Maryland -- College Park.

Dancer, choreographer, and humanist Nejla Y. Yatkin.

Ms Yatkin's 2005 dance De/Reconstructing Mata Hari is her personal story of displacement and isolation as a young woman of Turkish/Egyptian heritage growing up in Germany, the European Union.

Photo credit: With thanks.


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