Elisabeth Borgermans

2023 – now

Elisabeth Borgermans (Maastricht, 1982) studied Language and Literature at the KULeuven. After graduation, she started at the Fontys Dance Academy in Tilburg. She completed her dance training at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp. In Elisabeth’s work, the body is anything but silent. Literature, philosophy, music – and now cinema – are her points of departure. The body is a vehicle: all available tools of the body are deployed in search of a reformulation – of the world around us, of the medium of dance itself perhaps.
From 2023 Elisabeth will be a core creator at DansBrabant.

The collaboration between Elisabeth and DansBrabant started back in 2016 with the solo To Paint is to Love Again, the research project A Dance Allegory (2019) and her latest solo Zäsur (2021). Heleen Volman, former artistic director of DansBrabant on the occasion of working on A Dance Allegory: “(…) Zigzagging between the extremes of nonchalant precision and reckless abandon, Elisabeth made me curious about every next movement, every next glance, every next breath. In a conversation we had earlier, we talked about the necessity of “putting yourself on the line,” and what that might be. It was obvious that she had found that.”

Where Elisabeth previously focused on art historical perspectives, pop music, black metal, 19th-century poetry and German Romanticism, she now focuses on politically engaged cinema. Fassbinder, Passolini, Schroeter. Three post-war gay filmmakers who each aimed to activate political awareness and identity consciousness with their own clear aesthetic and editing technique. What can a choreographer learn from them? Under the (working) title Douleur et Rébellion, Elisabeth searches for ways to make dance political.

Elisabeth: “Fassbinder says: ‘Liebe ist kalter als der Tod’. I say: only an ice-cold, crystal-clear aesthetic form endures to be the prerequisite for political thought and action, however raw, cool and hard it may be. ”

DansBrabant says: The rücksichtlosheit with which Elisabeth tackles a plan, gets out on the floor, enters into conversation with you, is enviable and inspiring. Elisabeth knows how to approach word, drift, head, body in one straight line – and to hit them hard.