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Empathy: Neon Dance with Casper Clausen, Gyða Valtýsdóttir & more

Empathy_Carys Staton © Tonje Thilesen

What makes humans different from other beings? What influences us to empathise with others in certain situations? Inspired by the research of Simon Baron-Cohen („Zero Degrees of Empathy“), the London-based performance collective Neon Dance explores the human capacity of empathy in its latest production in musical and scenic form.

For the series of UM:LAUT, „Empathy“ will be realised for the first time as interdisciplinary live music version: In a set design created with light and laser technique, five dancers encounter an extraordinary ensemble consisting of the sound wizards Casper Clausen and Mads Brauer of Efterklang and Liima, the multi-instrumentalist Shahzad Ismaily from New York and the Icelandic cellist Gyða Valtýsdóttir of Múm.

EMPATHY
Neon Dance with Mads Brauer, Casper Clausen, Shahzad Ismaily & Gyða Valtýsdóttir
10 & 11 December | 20:00 | Radialsystem V
Tickets are available now at Radialsystem’s box-office (20 €) and online (plus fees)

Empathy © Tonje Thilesen

Neon Dance is an interdisciplinary dance company from London which develops and realises productions for the stage as well as for film and other media. The company was founded in 2003 and is directed by the choreographer Adrienne Hart. The group regularly collaborates with artists from diverse disciplines. The dance production „Falling From Trees“, created in 2010 with music by the multi-instrumentalist Peter Broderick, was presented at Glastonbury Festival, with Broderick’s soundtrack being successfully released through the label Erased Tapes. In collaboration with the duo SpringerParker from Berlin, Neon Dance developed the dance opera „There Are Places In Our Heads One Can Travel To“, which celebated its premiere in Norway at Barents Spektakel Festival. With „Archived’it“, the collective developed an interactive online project in 2012, which allows the users to rearrange their own version of the dance film „Dance on Steps“ from 1934 to a soundtrack by the Icelandic composer Ólafur Arnalds. Together with UM:LAUT, Neon Dance realised the unique live music version of the dance production „The Intention“ with the acclaimed pianist Nils Frahm and the cellist Anne Müller on the stage of Radialsystem V in 2013.

Empathy © Oliver Holms

Mads Brauer and Casper Clausen are founding members of the internationally successful band Efterklang, with which they released four albums (4AD, The Leaf Label) since 2000. The band has played 400 concerts in more than 30 countries, often supported by numerous guest musicians, and has realised various concert projects with symphony orchestras, an opera and diverse film projects. Beyond, Clausen and Brauer are – together with Rasmus Stolberg and the Finnish percussionist Tatu Rönkkö – active with the band project Liima, have co-founded the online radio station The Lake and curate the annual By The Lake festival in Berlin-Weissensee. The composer and multi-instrumentalist Shahzad Ismaily from New York is involved in various bands and projects and has collaborated with artists such as Lou Reed, Laurie Anderson, Marc Ribot, Colin Stetson, Bonnie Prince Billy and many more. The son of Pakistani immigrants to the US graduated with a Masters in biochemistry and has concerned himself with diverse music cultures on trips to India, Mexico, Japan, Indonesia, Morocco, Iceland and many other countries. The Icelandic cellist Gyða Valtýsdóttir started her career with the internationally celebrated indie pop band Múm. Since finishing her studies in Reykjavik and Basel, she has been active in diverse bands and projects worldwide. She moves vividly between music realms, composing, performing and recording with various musician and artists such as Josephine Foster, Julian Sartorius, Aaron and Bryce Dessner, A Winged Victory for the Sullen, Efterklang, Guy Maddin, Ragnar Kjartansson and many others.

Empathy_Casper Clausen © Alexander Schneider

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