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Dance House Lefkosia

Poetics of Dance Encounters

Poetics of Dance Encounters 

A research programme by Dance House Lefkosia 

With Erica Charalambous, Evagoras Vanezis 

Dance House Lefkosia is happy to announce the research programme Poetics of Dance Encounters, the first project of this kind in Cyprus, which aims at the long-term development of research around dance and performance. The programme’s main tenets are the strengthening of the aforementioned fields as areas of knowledge with specific lineages and histories, as well as their own epistemological (methods of production and understanding) and ontological (the ephemeral nature) concerns. The research programme will explore the ways in which dance and performance practices have started and grown on the island, how they have been defined, and how they can be further transmitted.

Erica Charalambous and Evagoras Vanezis, the two researchers of the programme, will tackle the project through a series of encounters (events, presentations, and writings), involving the dance and performance communities that have been creatively thriving in both local and global contexts. As they mention:

“We want to strengthen dance and performance’s links with other related fields of art and with society. This type of research project is long overdue and links to the maturation of the scene locally, with two incredibly active Dance Houses, and the development of many independent companies on the island. It is also well-timed to coincide with this moment of growth and participates in the global turn towards the recognition of performativity as a field of agency and practice, including political manifestations. What is it that makes dance and performance such a powerful tool of community building and what demands do they make on us? We choose the title Poetics of Dance Encounters, which suggests an open framework, bringing together the nuance of ‘poetics’ and the action of ‘encounter’ as starting points for this exploration. We see the project as an opportunity to create a polyphonic and inclusive platform of knowledge and exchange”.

As a first step, we reach out to the practitioners and the wider community of audiences to ask a series of questions linked to the twofold nature of this research: the specificity of its histories and how these inform its current ecologies. We have put together a questionnaire to which we invite you to respond to.

The questionnaire can be found here. The questionnaire will be available until Sunday the 12th of March 2023. The responses to the questionnaire will support the structure of this research and the accompanying encounters that will take place. Every care will be given to the protection of personal information and data.

On Friday the 3rd of March 2023 from 19:00-21:00, we will launch the programme with an evening of exchange where five collaborators are called to answer the questions of the questionnaire live, followed by a discussion moderated by the researchers of the project. 

Dance House Lefkosia (L-DH) is an organisation dedicated to the development of dance and performance, creating spaces for the needs of the (dance) community.

Our space is located in the heart of Nicosia, next to the river Pediaios. Since its founding in 2012, L-DH values artistic expression in all trajectories, local and international collaborations, reflection and innovation, multidisciplinary research, social awareness and care, and artistic well-being.

Our programs expand in four directions: presentations and mobility, audience development, artistic development and research, and education and discussions. L-DH also provides its premises for independent performances, workshops, film projections, conferences, exhibitions, lectures, book presentations and other productions.

Supported by Cultural Services of the Deputy Ministry of Culture.

Erica Charalambous (PhD) is a dance practitioner and scholar, currently working as an independent researcher with a variety of local and international universities. Her doctoral research (2017-2021) was part of a cotutelle research programme in Dance Digitisation at the Centre for Dance Research at Coventry University, UK and Deakin University Melbourne, Australia. Erica’s research focuses on the ‘moments’ and modes of engagement with archival content through embodied approaches. Her research examines the organisation, digitisation, function, digital curation and use of dance archives in Germany, the UK and Australia. Furthermore, her research explores the roles of memory as a process and method through embodied inquiry in building and examining archives through oral history-based strategies and somatic explorations. Erica’s work and research challenge dance studies and dance practice boundaries in Higher Education and advocate for decolonisation and ethical practices in dance education and practice. Her current artistic practice explores the by-products and affective narratives of her PhD research through a variety of writing and publishing projects, installations, workshops and dance research-related activities.

Evagoras Vanezis’ practice engages with the production and contextualization of cross-disciplinary spaces and narratives, working between the fields of curation, art theory and creative writing. Through the mediums of project, exhibition, and text, his hybrid methodology incorporates events, ecologies, fragments, and footnotes from sources as varied as the history of aesthetics, literature, feminist and queer theory, decoloniality, personal and collective experiences.

Since 2016 he has organized various exhibitions, programs, and publishing projects in collaboration with communities, institutions, and other initiatives. Recent projects include Anachoresis: Upon Inhabiting Distances, the Cyprus Pavilion at the 17th International Architecture Exhibition, Venice Biennale (co-curator, 2021), and Formworks, Thkio Ppalies Project Space (curator, 2019 – 2022), fellow of Micro & Macro Dramaturgies in Dance (2020 – 2022: Anghiari Dance Hub and Marche Teatro (Italy), Bora Bora (Denmark), Dance House Lemesos (Cyprus), DansBrabant (the Netherlands) and Tanec Praha (Czechia)).

He is currently a participant of A Natural Oasis?, Biennale of Young Artists from Europe and the Mediterranean (BJCEM, 2022 – 2023). He holds an MRes in Art Theory and Philosophy from Central Saint Martins.