French-Swiss choreographer and dancer Clara Delorme has been invited to present two short performances “L’albâtre” (Alabaster) and “Clara Delorme Lift Her Leg To Make Her Vagina Lip Come Out” at the National Arts Festival in Makhanda and in a mini programme curated by Qondiswa James at Theatre Arts in Cape Town.
“L’albâtre” is the first of a series of performances exploring monochrome. In this solo for a white body on a white background, Clara balances on the intersection between choreography and dance. White and exposed. A pulsating naked body in an empty space. The body of an animal; being born or intoning its swan song. It is a show that speaks to immobility and silence, and of a body holding its breath. Created in 2019, “L’albâtre” was included in the final selection of Swiss Dance Days 2021-22, which highlights remarkable dance pieces with artistic strength, originality and a unique creative language. (A delegation of festival directors and programmers from the regions of the liaison offices were supported to attend the showcase in Basel earlier this year).
The companion piece “Clara Delorme Lift Her Leg to Make Her Vagina Lip Come Out” is an act of reclamation and assertion of the difference between choosing to be seen and choosing to be used. The piece cleverly re-appropriates the online sexual harassment Clara suffered in response to “L’albâtre” to reclaim and redefine her online presence as an artist. In parallel to this, Clara has developed a workshop focusing on her experiences and creating the piece. She will give two workshops in Makhanda for teenage girls in the National Schools Festival and one public workshop in Cape Town.
Lift Her Leg is a mini programme curated by Qondiswa James at Theatre Arts that brings together two performing artists from different contexts working through embodiment and form, juxtaposing the experiences of femmes in each and exploring what commonalities might be found. Alongside Clara’s double bill, Cape Town based performance maker Tshegofatso Mabutla will debut her new work, “Kea Ipolela”.
Clara Delorme completed her training with the Junior Company Le Marchepied in 2017. That same year she joined the Company Alias on the creation of Contre-Mondes. Then in 2019 she joined the Company Judith Desse and the Company Arts Mouvementés / Yasmine Hugonnet for the creation of Extensions. In 2018 she founded the company Racine and began created her own projects. In September 2019 she presents L’albâtre during the platform Les Quarts-d’Heure at the Théâtre Sévelin 36, then at the Festival Les Urbaines at the Arsenic, Lausanne in December 2019. The piece has been programmed at the Emergentia, Tanz in Olten and Swiss Dance Days 21 festivals in Basel. Clara has been selected by Pro Helvetia for the Choreographing program in 2020. She is a performer for Mark Lorimer’s creation, and is the winner of the PREMIO 1st prize and the SSA grant for emerging choreographer with the project Malgrés. Clara is part of the Migros Cultural Percentage’s Double Mentoring platform for the 2020–2021 seasons with Yan Duyvendak.