A laboratory exploring the relation of the performing body and the scenographic construction. The lab is in English and it is free of charge.

WHERE: Studio ALTA in Invalidovna, Prague (CZ)

WHEN: 1 – 7.7.2021 | 10-18h daily

When applying for the laboratory (1-7.7) please note that in case of a mutual interest in a future collaboration on the project, the next research period will be the 13-21.10.

Deadline for applications: 1st of June, 2021

WHO: Initiated by the scenographer and choreographer Marie Gourdain (FR/CZ) and the physical theatre director and performer Felix Baumann (DE); in collaboration with Studio Alta in Invalidovna Prague (CZ). As part of their newest creation project “SEISMIC” (2021/22) they are looking for performers who are interested in working on the proposed concept and ready to share their own ideas and practises within a research based laboratory. Including a possible future collaboration on the final creation and premiere of the piece in 2022.

WHAT:  “Experimentation as a method!”

The laboratory is aimed as an international and interdisciplinary exchange platform, designed for dancers, actors and contemporary circus performers, who are interested to experiment on the boundaries of dance, physical theatre and stage design composition. The main focus of the lab will be the exploration of the body and its relation to the scenographic material – a movement oriented research of different stage props, their physicality, dynamic and function.  Looking for the dance and the imagery which is provoked in the dialogue of body and material and the poetic metaphors, which can be found in the space between. Within we will explore different qualities of movement and the choreographical concept of the piece in its becoming.

ABOUT SEISMIC (2021/22) – A physical theatre and dance project

“It’s like playing a game. Maybe if they would stop playing, it would finally all end!”

SEISMIC (2021/22) is a two-year project on the boundaries between contemporary dance, physical theatre and stage design initiated by the newly-formed pairing of the choreographer and scenographer Marie Gourdain (FR/CZ), and the director and performer Felix Baumann (DE/CZ). In 2021 the project will kick off with a research on the relation between the performing body and the scenographic construction at the heart of the project.

For their newest work, the author duo has chosen the setting of an extremely unstable and shaky stage that reverberates to the movements of the dancers. The floor, made of simple structural elements, allows the actions of one performer to impact the other bodies in the space. The instability of the platform and its constant shaking will modify the essence of the performers’ movements and challenge their way of moving through the space. Based on the relationship between the body and the scenographic materials, Gourdain and Baumann will define a specific dance vocabulary and the core of the dramaturgical concept of the piece. To enrich the research, the figure of the clown will be used as a choreographic tool with the intention of creating an absurd imaginary in which humorous and tragicomic situations can emerge.

The aim is to promote a constant movement on stage, which, once begun, never stops throughout the entire performance, a movement that will connect all levels of the performance – where everything is subtended by the same mechanism, the same principle that swings and shakes, provoking an unstoppable chain reaction, a seismic event, a dance in a shaking world. Where did it start? How will it stop?

To apply, please send your CV and a short letter of motivation (5 sentences) in english. Indicate what is your background and interest connected to the topic: “the relation of the performing body and the scenographic material”. When applying for the laboratory (1-7.7) please note that in case of a mutual interest in a future collaboration on the project, the next research period will be the 13-21.10.

Via mail to by June 1st the latest.

Costs for participants: participation is free; accomodation and travel has to be covered by the participant.

Covid regulations: Please note that due to the current situation with Covid19, a negative test result (antigen test) is required to participate in the laboratory.

For further information, please don´t hesitate to contact us.


Marie Gourdain (FR/CZ) | Scenographer, Choreographer | tYhle.cz

“The theme is the set. It’s the principal work tool, the starting point of the whole piece, the starting point of the choreographic gesture.”

Marie Gourdain is a French choreographer, scenographer and visual artist whose artistic activities have mainly been developed in Prague since 2010, though she also works on various projects more widely in Europe. Her work merges her formation in the visual arts with contemporary dance, drawing on the elements of graphic and sculptural composition (lines and shapes, form, proportion, space, scale, repetition and rhythm) and the detailed analysis of movement. The result is a complex choreographic work that represents a meeting point between a very visual, shaped and focused approach to the body, a blend of different forms of expression and corporal presence, and comprehensive research into the manipulation of stage props and the use of constructions on stage, while also leaving broad scope for intuition, improvisation and humour.

Marie studied animation cinema at ENSAD Paris (École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs) and the VŠUP in Prague. She received the Frédéric de Carfort Prize (2011) and the ENSAD Sculpture Prize (2009) for her work in sculpture.

In the Czech Republic, from 2010 to 2014 she worked in the field of animation cinema before returning to the theatre and dance. As a set designer, she has worked for many choreographers, such as Karine Ponties (2017), Rita Gobi (2018), Andrea Miltnerová, Barbora Látalová, Zdenka Svíteková (2016), Lucia Kašiarová (2014), andon Site Specific projects for the KorresponDance festival (Dominique Boivin, Jean Gaudin, Pierre Nadaud,2014–2018).

In parallel, in 2015 she joined the French-Czech physical theatre and dance collective tYhle and began her choreographic work.

In 2020 Marie received the first International Caroline-Neuber-Scholarship awarded by the City of Leipzig.

In 2020 Marie also attended a training course for choreographers called Edition Speciale #4 at the National Centre for Dance (CN D) in Paris. Following which she recently created a new company in France called Matière Mobile.

Felix Baumann (DE) | Physical Theatre Director, Performer |

“Play with everything – the clown as a creative principle in the choreographic process of physical theatre, dance and stage design composition”

Felix Baumann (DE) has been working as independent dance and theatre maker in collaboration with various international companies and organisations over the past 5 years (2016-2020). Amongst others with the Accademia Teatro Dimitri (CH), the cultural centre Švestkový Dvr / Plum Yard (CZ), the theatre company Divadlo Continuo (CZ), the cultural centre for performing arts Studio Alta Prague (CZ), the physical theatre collective Tyhle (CZ), and the centre for circus and dance Katapult Berlin (DE). During this time he was developing his research and art practise dedicated to an interdisciplinary and experimental approach merging various disciplines such as physical theatre, dance, circus and stage design composition – aspiring an original tragicomic style, by using the tool of the body in action to express the absurdities of daily life. Since 2020, after working as professional freelance artist in several international creations abroad, Baumann is aiming to center his work back into the region of his origins – inter alia by founding his own association – the freelance company “Von B bis Z” (Baumann & Zöller GbR) based in Baden-Württemberg (DE). The company is planned as platform for his past and future projects in the context of dance, theatre and circus, such as the performances: “The WARdrobe” (2018/19), “Mahaba” (2019) & “How things go” (2019/20), the workshop concept “7 Weights” (2017-21) and the “Laboratory of Fools” (2020-21). For this endeavor Baumann is supported by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and Media in the program NEUSTART KULTUR, aid program DIS-TANZEN of the Dachverband Tanz Deutschland (2020/21).

Produced by:
Matière Mobile
Von B bis Z

Co-produced by:
Studio ALTA
Tanec Praha / Ponec – divadlo pro tanec
LOFFT das theater

REZI.DANCE, Komařice
Schloss Bröllin

With the financial support of:
Ministerstvo kultury České republiky
Statutární město Brno
Hlavní město Praha