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Dance, choreographer Micha van Hoecke dies

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Belgian dancer, choreographer and director Micha van Hoecke, one of the world famous protagonists of ‘dance theater’, died tonight at the age of 77 at the hospital in Massa following a tumor that had been diagnosed some months ago. The announcement of the disappearance was given to beraking latest news by his wife, the Japanese dancer Miki Matsuse. The great choreographer loved Italy and for over thirty years he had established his residence in Rosignano Solvay, in the province of Livorno. Among his various positions in Italy, Micha von Hoecke was director of the ballet company of the Teatro dell’Opera in Rome and of the Teatro Massimo in Palermo. His long collaboration with Cristina Muti at the Ravenna Festival is also important. Born in Brussels on 22 July 1944 to a Russian mother and Belgian father, Micha van Hoecke studied in Paris with Olga Preobrajenskay and began his career as a dancer in 1960 with the company of Roland Petit, then joining Maurice Béjart’s Ballet du XX siécle, with where he worked for almost twenty years and was one of the closest collaborators both as an interpreter and, since 1979, as director of the Mudra school in Brussels, an experience that has left evident traces in his artistic production, oriented towards a close syncretism between performing arts. In 1981 van Hoecke founded his own company, L’Ensemble, for which he made numerous shows and choreographies: “Monsieur, monsieur” (1982); “Cascade” (1986); “Dante Symphonie” (1990); “Blue Odyssey” (1995); “Pierrot lunaire” 81998); “Maria Callas, la voix des choses” (2003); “Au café” (2005). He has also created choreographies for the Teatro alla Scala in Milan (“Iphigénie en Aulide”, 2002; “Moïse et Pharaon”, 2003) and directed works (“Macbeth”, 2004; “Faust”, 2005).

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After “Au cafè” (2006), in which he evocatively recreated the soft and smoky atmosphere of Belgian cafes, the choreographer created the show “The queen of the night” (2007), inspired by the character of Mozart’s magic flute, and then “Orpheus by Micha van Hoecke” (2008), in which he revisits one of the founding myths of the classical world through the almost sacred use of the Latin language. After directing “Salomé” (2008), in which the same choreographer recited the original French text by Oscar Wilde, in 2009 he gave a personal reading of Euripides’ “Bacchantes”, one of his most ambitious productions, to which they took part, in addition to the elements of his historic company, the actresses Chiara Muti and Pamela Villoresi. Among his reinterpretations of classic tragedies also “Le Troiane” (2011), in which the character of Hecuba was entrusted to the great mime-dancer Lindsay Kemp. In 1999 he was appointed dance director and principal choreographer of the Teatro Massimo in Palermo and in the period 2010-2014 he was director of the ballet corps of the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma. In 2015 for the Vittorio Emanuele Theater of Messina he created “Comme un souvenir”

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