Creators / Program
My intention with this work is rather quixotic. I was drawn to the idea of portraying Dulcinea del Toboso (Don Quixote’s absent heroine) because we have (almost) the same name... So I thought I could give her voice. In doing so, I’m hoping to open hearts and minds to another view in the mirror; one which speaks for those who barely survived written history and who's vestiges can be traced mostly through imagery, those who didn't shape today's mainstream religious attitudes.
Now, addressing religious attitudes is a risky endeavor... When people ask me how I find the courage to do so, my answer is that I dance around it! Or, to quote Woody Allen: "I was born into the Hebrew persuasion, but I converted to Narcissism."
Though clearly very personal, this work is a joint effort on every level, with a dedicated and surprisingly talented crew, and the extraordinary direction of Alice Ronfard. This is a technically challenging work - we may have to pray together if something goes wrong (see below).
Whether or not you have read Don Quixote, I hope you will leave this performance fired up with his (and Dulcinea’s) message of hope.
THE SHOW'S PRAYER
Hail Mac, full of data
Which reveals the qualities and talents of Dulcinea's peerless collaborators.
Dulcinea Langfelder : Choreography and concept
Alice Ronfard : Staging
Vincent Santes : Puppets
Philippe Noireaut and Danys Levasseur : Compositions and arrangement
Yves Labelle : Videos
Ana Cappelluto : Stage design
Éric Gingras : Lighting
CAST (biography below)
Dulcinea Langfelder : Dulcinea
And her "Honorable colleagues" (in alphabetical order)
Danny Carbonneau : performer, puppeteer and technician
Érik Lapierre : stage technician, propos person, performer
Danys Levasseur : sound and video technician, guitarist, performer
Vincent Santes : technical director, puppeteer master, performer
IN THE HOUSE:
Philippe Beaudoin: Sound and light manager
Benares Song : Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brecht (some words redrafted by Dulcinea Langfelder)
Orgullecida : Eliseo Silveira (Buena Vista Social Club)
La Rumba : Nino Rota (8 1/2, Fellini)
Low Down Man : Squirrel Nut Zippers
Speaking in Tongues : Sheila Chandra
Black Magic Woman : Carlos Santana
While My Guitar Gently Weeps : George Harrison (original lyrics from Harrison’s first demo tape)
Strange Fruit : poem by Abel Meeropol and put to music by Billie Holiday and Sonny White.
Dulcinea : Mitch Leigh and Joe Darion (french lyrics : Jacques Brel)
"Yin Yang" by Nathan Boey
Claymation by Dulcinea Langfelder
Wherein is related surprising discoveries made by the ingenious Dulcinea in researching this work, as well as other matters pleasant and amusing.
Highly educated, he spoke Hebrew and knew his world mythology. He wrote a lot (including drama and poetry) but Don Quixote, published in 1605, was his only real success (a huge one). He spent most of his life as a soldier. Wounded at the battle of Lepanto (the last crusade, in which the Spanish army prevailed over the Muslims) he became bitterly disillusioned with the government he served, since they offered him little or no support after his injury. There are reasons to believe that he was a converted Jew, a Freemason, and that he frequented intellectual circles who were persecuted for their dissidence.
He states in his novel that he didn't write it himself, but got it from Cid Hamet Benengeli, a Moor. It is interesting to note that in 1200, Wolfram Von Eschenbach, author of Parsifal (the first Holy Grail story) wrote that he had obtained the manuscript from “Kyott of Provence”, a Jew, who had gotten it from a Spanish Moor. Yes, Cervantes definitely read Parsifal.
Sufi Master, Idries Shah, writes that much of Don Quixote is based on Sufi tales, including the famous battle with the windmills.
Does Quixote mean 'truth' in Aramaic? So says Dominique Aubier (Google her) - derived from the word, kushta. Don, however, is an honorific, and definitely NOT the abbreviation for Donald.
It's a Hebrew word with various nuances in its basic meaning : 'God's dwelling' or 'Divine Presence'. It is likely linked to the word, Shak, which means 'power' in Sanskrit (as in the goddess, Shakti). Sakinat, in Arabic, is used in the Qur’an to mean 'inner peace' and is also a woman's name. For Jews and Christians, 'The Glory of the Shekinah' is represented by the burning bush, the halo, or the dove (Holy Spirit). The dove is also associated with many ancient goddesses. In many Jewish traditions, Shekhinah is the feminine aspect of God.
Asherah was, in Canaan (now called Israel), the consort of El (who later became Yahweh - a bachelor). She was represented by a tree. At the winter solstice, people cut down trees and decorated them in her honor. That's right - it is likely that the Christmas tree was originally a Hebrew Goddess! The Bible, however refers to the Asherah as pillars or idols - and calls for their destruction.
La Sardana de la Paz (The Sardane of Peace)
This dance dates back to antiquity, when it was danced at harvest time for the goddess, Ceres. Today it is still danced in September, in Southern France and Northern Spain (especially for the Catalonian national holiday on the 11th). Banished at the beginning of the Common Era because pagan, it resurfaced in the Middle Ages, when it was danced only by men and was an integral part of the troubadour culture. It disappeared again from the public square with the Inquisition, but made a comeback in the 18th century, to become the emblem of the Catalonian identity. It was used in resistance to Franco, and celebrated by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Pablo Casals, and others.
Le Chateau de Cabaret
Le Chateau de Cabaret was a Cathar stronghold in 13th century Southern France, where many a troubadour took refuge from the burgeoning Inquisition. It became known to this day for the informal performances held there.
Story behind the song, Strange Fruit
Strange Fruit was written by Abel Meeropol, a white Jewish High School teacher and political activist from the Bronx writing under the name of Lewis Allan. The lyrics were originally published as a poem in 1937, and Meeropol brought it to Billie Holiday in late 1938. She and Sonny White put the poem to music. In 1939 she sang it at Café Society, the first integrated cabaret in New York. Meeropol also adopted Julius and Ethel Rosenberg's two sons after their parents' executions. They were accused (and convicted) of being communist spies in 1953.
In which we examine the rich experience of Dulcinea Langfelder’s Honorable Colleagues, as well as that of the lady herself
Dulcinea Langfelder– Dulcinea del Toboso
Born in New York, she studied dance for much of her life, then mime with Étienne Decroux in Paris. She studied theatre with Eugenio Barba and Yoshi Oida (long time colleague of Peter Brook). She came to Montreal in 1978 to work with the troupe Omnibus, then briefly with Carbone 14. She founded her company in 1985, and has created multidisciplinary works that have toured extensively: Vicious Circle (1985), The Lady Next Door (1989), Hockey! O.K.? (1991), Portrait of a Woman with Suitcase (1994) and Victoria (1999). She also works as choreographer in various theatre and musical productions. She has won several awards and was named Personality of the Year in Dance by the Montreal newspaper, La Presse, in 1990.
Vincent Santes– performer, puppeteer, technical director and light operator
Vincent studied micro and precision technology, photography, drama and puppeteering in different schools and he studied technical direction and stage lighting at the Institut Supérieur des techniques du Spectacle in Avignon. He was artistic director of the company, Theatre de l’Éclipse, for 15 years. He’s conceived set and light design as well as puppets for various theatre companies and assumed the technical direction and lighting. Vincent has been working with Dulcinea Langfelder & Co. since 2001.
Danys Levasseur – performer, musician, sound director
Composer and multi-instrumentalist, he has made albums with singer, Mary Sarah and composed the music for Foreign Exchange, a piece by Peter Hays. He created, live, Longue l’Onde, a piece for fretless electric guitar and brook; he improvised, live, the soundtrack for the video-performance, Mémoire métamorphique, in the event, Dompteurs de nuit, in Trois-Rivières, Quebec. Danys has been working with Dulcinea Langfelder & Co. since 2000.
Erik Lapierre – performer, stage technician
Born in Lac St-Jean, Québec, Erik studied the visual arts and cinema and obtained an Interdiciplinary Baccalauréat in Cinematic Arts at the University of Chicoutimi. He came to Montreal in 1996, where he worked at the Palais des congrès de Montréal (Montreal Convention Center) as an audio-visual technician before starting to travel around the world with various theater companies. He has been working with Dulcinea Langfelder & Co. since 2003, as technician and performier in the last two creations of the company, Victoria and Dulcinea's Lament.
Danny Carbonneau – performer
Danny began his career as member of the joyous street theatre foursome, Les Jogleors, in 1999. He then co-founded the company, Réverbère Théâtre. As puppeteer, he worked with the Cirque du Soleil in Wintuk in New York, and with Théâtre de la Dame de Cœur for the past 3 years. Trained in stage fencing, he performed in the World Kobudo Show, as well as in films : Timeline and 300. He has a diploma in interpretation from Cégep de Saint-Hyacinthe. He joined DL&Cie in 2010.
And in the house:
Philippe Beaudoin – Audio Engineer
Philippe learned his way through many festivals around Quebec, doing live sound. Moving to Montreal afterwards, he toured in Quebec, Canada and Europe as front of house engineer with various shows : Gary Kurtz (mentalist), Claudine Mercier (Comic), Martin Matte (Comic), Yves Lambert (an icon of folk music in Quebec), Jonas (rocker), and more. He is also working with André-Philippe Gagnon (impressionist) as chief audio, video, and synchronising. He is the ear of DL&CO since 2010.
The company acknowledges with gratitude the creative residencies offered by the Banff Center, Hexagram, Usine C, la Place des Arts and Théâtre du Bic.
the Performing Arts Series at the Johnson County Community College de Overland Park, Kansas, É.U.