Föld, Hungarian for earth, was commissioned by the Holland Festival in 1985. Many considered this production as the highlight of the festival, and since then Föld has become a classic in the Dutch modern dance tradition.
A round, earthen wall forms the setting of Föld. In that circle, the dancers engage in an exhausting battle. They try to clear a way out with enormous physical exertion.
The bodies of the dancers are filled with pent-up tension at first and when they have vented their energy on the unploughable earth, they are finally left as steaming pillars. With the power of galley slaves, the drive of top-class sportsmen and the determination of warriors, they literally level the wall. Their heavy physical labour can also be seen as a metaphor for the struggle against the elements and for life.
With Föld Krisztina de Châtel has created a brilliant allegory about the eternal struggle between man and nature. (Algemeen Dagblad)
Föld is an attractive addition to the Dutch non-academic (modern) dance. Owing to the gripping combination of pure minimal dance, performance and visual art. (de Volkskrant)
But above all, the piece exudes an enormous physical vitality. The dancers literally transcend human limitations. One leaves the theatre feeling confused and bruised in every sense. But that is the purpose of theatre. (Politiken, Danmark)
premiere 24 June 1985, Amstelkerk, Amsterdam
choreography Krisztina de Châtel
dance Juliette van Ingen, Marijke Huybregts, Josje Neuman, Dries van der Post, Robert Salden, Lilian Vos
music Philip Glass – Another Look at Harmony, Part 4
conductor Henk van der Meulen
live peformance Rokus van de Heuvel (organ), vocal ensemble Tamam
stagedesign Conrad van de Ven
light Jilles Jongkind
costumes Linda Bogers
photography Jaap Pieper