concept, movement, performance
Natalia Draganik, Dominika Knapik, Joanna Leśnierowska, Agnieszka Noster, Janusz Orlik
Nothing happens and we report it.
''... a bright and artistically mature observation – far from an easy provocation''.
Witold Mrozek, nowytaniec.pl, November 2007
''After the provocative Whatever You Wish (2003) and the disturbing Obcojęzyczność (2005), the time has come for another provocation. Towarzystwo Gimnastyczne's Nic is their third première. Its assumption is to contradict the traditional idea of a spectacle and the idea of 'something' happening on stage. Nothing is the title of the production. It is also the starting point of the spectacle. 'Nothing' has the right to happen on stage. The red curtain is the only remaining sign of the traditional theatre.
The choreographical vision in Nic is intriguing. Mainly due to the correlation of the concept of the spectacle and the fresh form of movment proposed by Towarzystwo Gimnastyczne. The creators of Nothing propose the kind of kinetic equivalent which is adequate to the emptiness and the lack of action. The choreography consists of slow, technically uneffective, repetitive elements. The choreographical sequentces resemble Chinese tai chi, join the group, hence, the dancers move as if they were in a collective trans. Owing to its repetetiveness and simplicity, the gestures performed by the dancers become, as if, transparent and don't draw the viewers' attention(...) The movement seems to disappear in the space – apparently the ideal way to show that 'nothing' happens on the stage(...) That nothing exists. On the other hand, though, it is the best way to stress that an ideal vacuum is a non-existent phenomenon(...) That there is always 'something' that fills it(...) air, light, human bodies, mundane events, unnecessary sounds(...)''
Anna Koczorowska, Nic to Coś, Artpapier, October 2007
''The production I got particularly interested in this year was Nic by Towarzystwo Gimnastyczne. The company performed in a different than usual crew (Natalia Draganik, Joanna Leśnierowska, Dominika Knapik, Agnieszka Noster, Janusz Orlik). Some reviewers of the spectacle joked that Nic is, indead, about nothing. This, however, is a fallacy, as in reality, Nic evokes numerous associations and touches upon a multitude of notions. It takes advantage of the form of abstract painting, or even, to go further, draws from the action painting. Nic has a very illusive structure. It appears to be a very, so to say, light and amusing on the surface. It juggles with different elements of the mass-culture, as well as film symbols with extraordinary ease and intuition. There, however, exist other levels of interpretation of the performance. These levels adhere to the fields of knowledge demanding humanistic preparation. The amount of intelectual pleasure delivered by Nic depends on the amount of interpretational levels decoded by the spectator.
Anna Królica, Co w tańcu 2007?, nowytaniec.pl, December 2007
A Poznań-based artistic collective (and association) - Towarzystwo Gimnastyczne – has been created in 2003. As a group, they wish to avoid all genre generalizations. In their work, they predominantly utilize widely understood contemporary dance techinques. Their primary aim, however, is to choose such means of artistic expression, which would best reflect the spectacle's contents. After Whatever You Wish (2003) and Obcojęzyczność (2005), Nic is Towarzystwo Gimnastyczne's third premiere. This time, the collective invited three independent, Polish artists (Janusz Orlik, Agnieszka Noster, Dominika Knapik) to collaborate with them.