Dance, my love

Taniec, moja miłość (Dance, my love) is a pilot, interdisciplinary project by the artist and curator Edyta Kozak, covering two broad issues: the experience of a dancer and an artist, and economization in the art of dance. It will consist of four projects by the guest artists, relating to the practical and theoretical aspects of dance as art. The goal of the project is to stimulate discussion on the function of dance as an art genre, as well as the experience of a dancer on the job market. The goal is to create conditions for new works of art, more profound reflections on dance as art, and an attempt to look at the dancer as an artist in a broader, social context. The first part will take place in November 2016 at Komuna// Warszawa.

Guest artists: Rafał Dziemidok, Dr Wojciech Klimczyk, Ramona Nagabczyńska, Tomasz Ciesielski. The discussion panel will be moderated by Karol Franczak. The event will also include the screening of a short documentary Lekcja (The Lesson) by Andrzej Michałowski.

The project is a natural consequence of the artistic interests of Edyta Kozak in the rules under which independent art is functioning in contemporary culture.


25.11 | 19:30 - 21:30 | Komuna// Warszawa

   #1 Edyta Kozak 

   #2 Wojciech Klimczyk

   #3 Ramona Nagabczyńska

   + A short documentary Lekcja by Andrzej Michałowski

   + Discussion panel moderated by Karol Franczak

26.11 | 19:30 - 21:30 | Komuna//Warszawa

   #   Edyta Kozak 

   #4 Rafał Dziemidok

   #5 Tomasz Ciesielski

   + A short documentary Lekcja by Andrzej Michałowski

   + Discussion panel moderated by Karol Franczak


reduced 10 PLN, normal 15 PLN

Available one hour before the event at the theatre: Komuna// Warszawa, ul. Lubelska 30/32, Warszawa

The number of tickets is limited. Tickets may be booked in advance before November at:

Taniec, moja miłość project has been selected democratically during the play Moje własne interview® Fanny Panda by Edyta Kozak. The play is not only an inspiration but also the continuation of the artistic search and the questions Edyta has been asking since 2013, in the project RE// MIX by Komuna// Warszawa.

Three ideas presented by the artist were assessed using the same criteria implemented by officials and experts when they assess similar cultural projects. Taniec, moja miłość was awarded the highest number of points and won the trust of the audience. According to the audience, this project was the most essential and innovative, and had high artistic and social potential.

Kozak, along with the guest artists, wants to ask a number of questions about the functioning of dance and performance, wants to create an area for sharing experiences and dance practices, wants artists to face each other, wants to emphasize the common experiences, and above all wants to energize the artistic circles. The status of an artist is not anything shameful after all!

“The visible lack of profound artistic thought in Poland on the way dancers function, but also on dance as art, makes me ask important questions. How and in what conditions is dance created? Does it have to be a part of a grand theatrical manufacturing machine? On its own does it have to be modest in nature and limited in form? How does one make art in the uncertain, ever changing economic situation of artists? How does one dance and fight the rules of capitalistic economies? And how does one fight the inflexibility of taste and the intolerance of viewers? Are artistic values more important than money made on a show? Are those artists who are dependent on public financing dancing a false dance before the committee members?

On the one hand dance in Poland is about improving the existing aesthetics, on the other – about new forms bordering on conceptual formalism. The “Taniec, moja miłość” project allows us to see, from the broader perspective, the issues of dance and the issues faced by a dancer whose short career is marked by an unending process of defining oneself and one’s fitness for this profession (readiness of the body to avoid injuries, mental predispositions for ever changing conditions of assessment…)”. Edyta Kozak

#1 Edyta Kozak Instead of introduction

I want to learn something from my fellow artists, this is my reason behind this project. Theatre/dance is my place of work. Not as a specific building, but as a certain state in which thoughts and emotions can materialize. Dance is theory and practice in one. One needs to experience dance, otherwise it will not materialize. I usually work alone, although there are many people around me. I will do things as I do them anyway. In this respect others have no influence over me. But when I show them my ideas, share with them my tiny discoveries, then the possibilities of inter-human relations arise. We won’t find any textbooks or templates for dance, this is why I want to learn and gain experiences from others.

I invited practitioners and theoreticians so I would learn more about them, about myself and about our profession. I want to know how they function, what perspectives they have on their actions, what makes them uncomfortable, what inspires them: how they make their theatre. I like it when artists are in my mind and in my emotions. And regardless of what they do I feel they touch me and become close to me, although I don’t even know them and I don’t go with them after their show for a glass of wine to make friends. When I watch them, I feel I know them and I don’t have the need to become friends with them. This time will be different. I need a live relation, a meeting with others, with other artists on stage, even for a little while, to understand why we love dance.

#2 dr Wojciech Klimczyk  A corporation, you fool!

A “performative lecture” based on The King’s Two Bodies: A Study in Medieval Political Theology by Ernst H. Kantorowicz.

[T]he King has two Capacities, for he has two Bodies, the one whereof is a Body natural, consisting of natural Members as every other Man has, and in this he is subject to Passions and to Death as other Men are: the other is a Body politic, and the Members thereof are his Subjects, and he and his Subjects together compose the corporation, […] and this Body is not subject to Passions as the other is, nor to Death, […]. – Plowden

Since the state is mind objectified, it is only as one of its members that the individual himself has objectivity, genuine individuality, and an ethical life. Unification pure and simple is the true content and aim of the individual, […]. – Hegel

Dance, my love. But what is love? And what is dance?

We often use the word “body”. But we forget about its ambiguity. The body of a dancer, we say. What body? What dancer? Maybe we will find the answer from the medieval lawyers…

There is of course a body of an individual, but there is also a community body. The latter can be even more mysterious than the former. And certainly needs choreography. Medieval lawyers called it corpus mysticum. They wrote it had not soul and it was invisible. But with certainty it was political. One who says community, says power and law. For this reason we have seen the return of the Roman term: corporation.

Let’s talk about corporations. We need to save this term. Use it against self-willed power, as it was used by medieval lawyers against a self-willed prince. Corporation is not a technical term, it’s an ideal. That is why it needs constant care. It requires the work of memory, which means choreography, because as Arbeau said it is what “dance writing” is about. Choreography immortalizes the body. Dance is not subject to death. It becomes corpus mysticum. So dance as a binding material of a corporation? A corporation as a political ideal? So what is a country? And what choreography does it need? There is just one word left in this case: love. Dance, my love.

 #3 Ramona Nagabczyńska  Shift

In “Shift” Ramona Nagabczyńska experiments with the potential of a body, testing its limits and possibilities. She uses collage, Genesis P-Orridge’s strategy, B-class horrors, krumping and beat box. The main creative strategies are mutation, repetition, reflection and symmetry. This leads to constant negotiations between the original and the copy, between the reality and the imagined.

In Nagabczyńska’s show, identity is a fluid matter subject to constant transformation that can be created again and again in the process of experimenting and playing. To the question “what would one do, if one didn’t dance?” Shift answers: speculate about the future giving us unlimited possibilities.

concept / choreography / performance: Ramona Nagabczyńska

cooperation / performance: Magda Jędra, Karolina Kraczkowska, Anka Herbut

dramaturgy: Anka Herbut

 #4 Rafał Dziemidok  How to dance until the end (of life)  

The starting point for this performative project was the book How to dance forever by the American dancer, choreographer, and teacher Daniel Negrin. Immediately the project’s title, which is an attempt to translate the book’s title, points to a certain linguistic clumsiness, an oddity of certain terms and the impossibility of translating them. How can an English word “forever” be expressed in Polish? “For always”, “eternally”, “until the end”, or maybe “without an end”?

The content of the book is equally confusing. The immense amount of advice on how the dancer can manage their life, body and career to reach the “forever” mentioned in the title, is difficult to “be translated” into the Polish reality, system, way of life, mentality and culture. An additional difficulty is the time that has elapsed since this book was published (1988). The world has changed significantly, but the question is whether the world of dance has changed as well, and if so, how? The project author discusses the book, relating his impressions after reading it for the first time 20 years ago to those he had when he read it again just recently. Has the 20 year time difference changed anything in his attitude towards the text, and if so, what and why?

The project is an attempt at defining what dance means personally for a professional dancer, what it means in Poland, what its relation is with dance in other places, and what changes it has undergone within the last 20 years.

This is a one-time project created to be shown as part of a broader concept Taniec, moja miłość by Edyta Kozak, and its form of presentation can best be described by the term “a literary soirée”.

#5 Tomasz Ciesielski Qualified costs

This is an ordinary family gathering. We want to make our family more sustainable – my father, my brother and my son. This is a male, but not a patriarchal, group. One man is an ex-politician and a businessman who was, in the past, very successful. The second is a not very committed but outstanding corporate employee – a genius with numbers. The third is a two year old boy, and I owe most to him. Dance is my job. I am happy, but balance is the thing I lack most – dance costs a lot. Despite differences between us we try to balance the responsibilities in our family economy. But (non)material family resources are finite and cover only qualified family costs. Let’s try together to calculate the cost of my “dance project”. Excluding regrets, let’s calculate my own inputs, donations, taxes and debts.

concept / choreography / performance: Tomasz Ciesielski

performance: Grzegorz Ciesielski, Robert Ciesielski

music: Jakub Pałys


Rafał Dziemidok – dancer, choreographer, pedagogue. Rafal began his professional career as a dancer in 1992 at Bard College, USA, as a student of theatre and dance programs. Later he collaborated with Dada von Bzdülöw Theatre of Leszek Bzdyl and Katarzyna Chmielewska, and the bygone Wojciech Mochniej’s and Melissa Monteros’ Gdańsk Dance Theatre and Compagnie Yvette Bozsik from Budapest. At the same time he received a degree in law at the Gdańsk University, and in comparative constitutional law and human rights at the Central European University in Budapest. Since 1997 Dziemidok has been independently developing his solo and duo works. Since 2014 he has been living in Berlin.

Ramona Nagabczyńska – dancer and choreographer. Ramona completed the General Education Ballet School in Warsaw, then she studied contemporary dance at the Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts and at The Place in London. She worked as a dancer for, among others, the Polish Dance Theatre, Zawirowania Dance Theatre, Marysia Stokłosa, Good Girl Killer, Darkin Ensemble (United Kingdom), choreographer David Wampach (France) and Kaya Kołodziejczyk. She is a member of U/LOI collective of Polish choreographers and dancers working mainly abroad and at the Center in Motion.

Dr Wojciech Klimczyk – cultural sociologist, author of Erotyzm ponowoczesny, Wizjonerzy ciała. Panorama współczesnego teatru tańca and Wirus mobilizacji. Taniec a kształtowanie się nowoczesności (1455-1795), vol. 1-2. Together with Agata Świerzowska, Dr Klimczyk was an editor of the anthology Music and Genocide. Apart from his work at the university, he is a member of the artistic collective Harakiri Farmers combining contemporary dance, theatre and performance in their works.

Tomasz Ciesielski – performer, dancer, theatre researcher and manager, in his work Tomasz combines all of these functions. Since 2009 he has been a member of CHOREA Theatre Associations, participating in projects such as: “Antyk/Taniec w Re-Konstrukcji”, “Koguty, Borsuki i inne Kozły”, “Oratorium Dance Project”. In 2011 he began collaborating with a Danish ensemble Granhøj Dans, with which he created an international play Men&Mahler and Rite of Spring Extended, directed by Palle Granhøj. Both shows were awarded the prize for the best Danish dance theatre performance Årets Reumert 2013 and 2014. Ciesielski also creates performances, among others “Sens-akcja”, presented in Poland and the USA. He is an author of publications (including the only thematic monograph on the Polish market: Taneczny umysł. Teatr ruchu i tańca w perspektywie neurokognitywistycznej) and a participant in projects (Poland, France, United Kingdom) exploring the possibility of applying cognitive sciences and neurosciences to studies on dance.

Karol Franczak – sociologist and cultural expert, Assistant Professor at the Institute of Sociology at the University of Łódź. Karol studies the issues of power and communication, sociology of culture, and contemporary art. He is author of a book about rebellious Austrian writers Kalający własne gniazdo. Artyści i obrachunek z przeszłością (Universitas). He contributes to academic papers and to social and cultural magazines such as Odra and Tygodnik Powszechny.

Artistic and curatorial concept: Edyta Kozak

Guest artists: Rafał Dziemidok, Dr Wojciech Klimczyk, Ramona Nagabczyńska, Tomasz Ciesielski

Discussion moderator: Karol Franczak

Organizer: Fundacja Ciało/Umysł

Production management: Agnieszka Kiewicz

Co-organizer: Komuna// Warszawa

Project co-financed by: The Municipal City of Warsaw, APAP as part of the Creative Europe EU program.