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Silesian Dance Theatre - 'Glamour of mundane. Dream from a saint'

We Venture Inside Ourselves

by Marta Maniecka (translation Marta Maniecka)

June 2005 -- Bytom, Poland

Jacek Luminski’s "Glamour of mundane. Dream from a saint" is not only perfectly planned, energetic movement, but also a story about travelling and searching. It consists of heterogeneous scenes and episodes, which makes catching the story’s message quite difficult. As if in a dream, there is an interlacing of views, which seemingly don’t compose the whole. Each of the views brings some new impressions and arouses elusive emotions.

It begins with a young man, coming down from a high post, crossing an invisible border and entering a new, unfamiliar world. It is the beginning of a journey which brings new experiences. Every meeting, every event is a kind of education about life, about people and relations between them. It is also the quest for the truth. The dances change all the time, from solos to collective dances, showing both the good and the bad in life. The relations between dancers are sometimes tender and sometimes aggressive. Every meeting in this strange space, somewhere between heaven and hell, can become a mutual experiencing of joy or mutual harming. Each character keeps changing his face, trying to find the right one.

One of the most interesting but also the most controversial scenes is the infantile game show, ending with audience participation. Such a short break in the performance, colourful and funny. But after a while the young man shouts: “Let’s smile, let’s have fun!” changes from crying for fun into an exclamation of regret and disappointment. It turns out that there is nothing behind the play – it is just an easy joke for which most of us fall. Cheap gestures may be beautiful, but worth nothing.

The journey of the young man can be compared to a series of trials – each new situation and each new character he meets is a test for him and allows him to discover the principles ruling this world and his own identity. It is a kind of initiation – the character has to find and accept the other side of himself. The innocent and joyful boy becomes a man who knows that he is able to give both love and sorrow. The symbolic moment of the character’s death, when his head is covered with sand, points out the fact of completing his initiation. Crossing the step of recognition is at the same time a kind of self-annihilation and the entrance to the zone of rebirth. Old opinions, habits and the fog of ideas about himself are destroyed and replaced by self-consciousness. And “the one, who has seen himself the way he is, is greater than the one who resurrects the dead ”.

The message is universal. “Glamour of mundane. Dream from a saint” is what we experience everyday. By meeting people we build different relations with them and we find out the truth about ourselves and about the world. Everything that happens to us has an influence on what we are like and lets us establish our own limits. Oscillating between truth and illusion we keep on searching for what is most important. It doesn’t matter whether we are among people or alongside them, we always venture inside ourselves.

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