Great success of Czech dance

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This year, the Aerowaves European platform of young choreographers voted three Czech works to the shortlist of 20 of the most interesting creative works! Congratulations to Sabina Bočková and Johanna Pocková / PocketArt for The Lion's Den, Cécile Da Costa for the personal solo Roselyne and Tereza Lenerová Hradilková for the fascinating dialogue with the musician Floex in the production of Don't Stop.

"It is a historic success in the competition of 35 European countries," says Yvona Kreuzmannová, director and founder of Tanec Praha. "Never in the 25 years of Aerowaves' existence have three works from the Czech Republic made the shortlist at the same time."

The Aerowaves platform is celebrating 25 years since its founding at The Place theatre in London. Every year at the end of October, always in a different city, experts from various European countries meet to watch dozens of videos of shorter works (15 – ­­­­40 minutes) from the workshop of so-called "emerging artists", i.e. creators standing at the beginning of their international career. At an intensive three-day meeting, they watch samples of dozens of other works as selected by representatives of individual countries, but also smaller working groups, thanks to which all submitted works will always be viewed by 3 – 7 experts.

The Aerowaves platform is about discovering new talent. It represents a great chance for them to perform on the international scene, which has been helped for 10 years by the Spring Forward festival, which is also held in a different city each time (2016 Tanec Praha in Plzen). Every year, from hundreds of registered videos, experts select 20 works that have the potential to gain international attention. Special attention is paid to them on the website, they are presented by Aerowaves partners with the support of the Creative Europe program, and have the chance to be presented live at the Spring Forward festival, which brings together over 200 presenters and journalists from around the world.

In the past, Czech dance has been shortlisted approximately once in 3 – 4 years, but in the last decade its reputation has begun to rise significantly; two Czech works have been selected twice among the TOP20 – most recently last year, when Viktor Černický succeeded with PLI and Markéta Stránská with LeŤ. This year's meeting in Athens will go down in history not only with its atypical format (due to COVID restrictions, only a 10-member jury met and more than 30 other experts actively discussed and watched videos via Zoom), but mainly thanks to its results.

Twenty21, i.e. a selection of 20 top works for 2021, includes three works from the Czech Republic, thanks to the unquestionable quality, diversity and original concept of each author. Two authentic female solos by Tereza Lenerová Hradilková (Don't Stop) and Cécile Da Costa (Roselyne) and one appealing duet by Sabina Bočková and Johana Pocková / PocketArt (The Lion's Den) are selected representatives of the Czech Republic who withstood tough competition from more than 600 entries from 35 European countries. The Czech Republic had a total of 13 registered works, which is a very solid number.

"There is hardly a better way to draw attention to the extraordinary potential that Czech dance and movement art represents for the Czech Republic," Kreuzmannová said. "I was proud of our artists and passed to them congratulations from the other members of the jury with a beautiful vision that I believe we will open a real House of Dance in our country in a few years and create solid conditions for the further professional growth of all these talents."