Performance — 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27 Jan 2019, 2, 3 Feb 2019

The Stedelijk Museum is pleased to present Michele Rizzo’s performance HIGHER xtn. as part of the exhibition ‘Freedom of Movement’.
free of charge (performance only)
Entrance hall
12 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
13 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
19 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
20 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
26 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
27 Jan 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
2 Feb 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
3 Feb 2019, 3 pm until 3.40 pm
Not necessary

Newly reconfigured for the Stedelijk, HIGHER xtn. is an adaptation of Rizzo’s 2015 performance HIGHER, which explores how nightclubs offer dancers a space for self-expression and communion. Drawing from the work of theorists Julia Kristeva, Boris Groys, and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Rizzo considers how dance can facilitate states of flow, totality, and transcendence, and acknowledges the connection between dance and para-religious practices. He is particularly interested in the cathartic and transformative power of techno music, whose repetitive rhythms can temporarily blur the perceived boundaries of the body. HIGHER xtn. is also attentive to the important role that nightclubs play as gathering spaces for marginalized groups, and to how clubs fosters public intimacy while providing individuals an environment in which to explore their identities.

Michele Rizzo, 'HIGHER xtn.', 2018, courtesy de kunstenaar © Alwin Poiana
Michele Rizzo, 'HIGHER xtn.', 2018, courtesy de kunstenaar © Alwin Poiana

In HIGHER xtn., dancers negotiate the boundaries between the self and the collective. While performing minimal, repetitive movements, individual dancers make their way through the galleries, ultimately convening in the Stedelijk’s Audizaal. Then, pairs of dancers begin to perform in sync until the entire group is eventually dancing in unison. As the repetition of the choreography reconfigures the group into a single body, Lorenzo Senni’s hypnotic electronic soundtrack intensifies in tandem with the dancers’ movements.

During its run at the Stedelijk Museum, HIGHER xtn. will add more dancers with each performance, beginning with two and ending with fifteen, including students from the School for New Dance Development of Amsterdam (SNDO). When it is not being performed live, a video of the original 2015 performance of HIGHER can be seen in the exhibition space.

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Production performances: DANSCO / Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
With thanks to: SNDO / ICK Amsterdam / Mondriaan Fonds / Prins Bernhard Cultuur Fonds


Michele Rizzo (b. 1984, Italy) is a choreographer and visual artist whose work explores processes of transformation and transcendence. Trained in visual arts as well as dance, Rizzo studied at the Sandberg Instituut in Amsterdam and at the School for New Dance Development in Amsterdam, where he often teaches choreography and movement research. He has participated in residencies at the International Choreographic Arts Centre in Amsterdam, Q21 Museum Quarter in Vienna, and Live Works Centrale Fies in Trento. His work has been presented and performed at venues and festivals including URB Festival, Helsinki; Rencontres Chorégraphiques Internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis; La Briqueterie, Paris; Santarcangelo Festival, Rimini; Short Theater, Rome; Festival DDD, Porto; CAMPO, Ghent; Triennale Teatro dell’Arte, Milan; and Actoral, Montreal.