Sans Souci Festival of Dance Cinema,

Sans Souci at Arvada Center 2022
Arvada Center Black Box

If you’re new to dance film, this is the screening for you! In our second collaboration with the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, we’re highlighting selections from our 19th annual festival season. Featuring documentaries, music videos, and short dance films, this lineup hails from the Australia, Czech Republic, Germany, Nigeria, Russia, Spain, and the U.K., and has a little something for everyone.
The program will include some styles you know and love — ballet, hip hop, and contemporary dance — and some styles you may not be as familiar with — aerial, artistic pole, and so much more. With viewers who have never experienced a dance cinema screening in mind, we’ve curated this particular program with as much variety as possible, illustrating the diversity, depth, and artistry of the films in the genre.

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Frame from Blue Monday

Blue Monday, 2019, Spain, 6 min

Directed by Andrew Margetson
Choreography and dancing by Agnes Sales Martin and Hector Plaza Hernandez
Blue Monday tells the story of a relationship - mutual support, aggression, shifting power and resolution all play their part in a compellingly original piece created in one fluid shot in a sunny dance studio in Barcelona.

Guest, 2021, Czech Republic, 10 min

Directed by Regina Hofmanova
Produced by Regina Hofmanova, Barbora Červenková
Choreography by Regina Hofmanova
Dancing by Ivona Szantova, Daniele Iemolo
Edited by Šárka Sklenářová
Director of Photography by Radek Loukota
Design and Costumes by Renata Weidlichová
When a guest is enthusiastically welcomed into her host's immaculate home, she is inspired to reciprocate with an unexpected introduction to her own world. The result is a surreal and often absurd navigation through familiarity and estrangement, observed through mannerisms and habits, which serve as a metaphor for the fabric connecting and dividing individuals.

A Lucky Generation, 2020, Nigeria, 4 min

Directed by Oluwaseun Godwin Usman
Featuring Busayo Olowu
"A Lucky Generation" is a dance expression that highlights the effects of change, modernization and identity crisis within the Nigerian society, with Lagos as a visual reference point. It starts with a brief narrative extracted from A Lucky Generation in the book, "There was a Country" by Chinua Achebe. Afterwards, we see our Subject interact with various environments within Lagos state, Nigeria. Our Subject's face is barely visible from the beginning. The mask and skeletal costume are all symbols representing mystery, conflict (internal and external) and eventually, rediscovery and renewal. The film ends with the Subject revealing his face, suggesting that he has found himself, but yet isn't satisfied with the results. It now poses a question as to whether he embarks on another journey to understand this Self or he allows the society dictate for him.
Frame from The Swan at the Mouth of the River

The Swan at the Mouth of the River, 2021, Israel, 21 min

Produced and Directed by Daphna Mero
Choreography and dancing by Bernd R Burgmaier
At the age of 41, Bernd Burgmaier wears his pointe shoes to dance his favorite female role, "The Dying Swan" one last time. After a fulfilling dancing career in Les Ballets Trockadero, he leaves the stage, finds love, and settles in Tel-Aviv. A docu-dance that challenges the binary perceptions of life and gender.
Frame from Inexistent Word

Inexistent Word, 2021, Russian Federation, 7 min

Produced and Directed by Vera Kachinskaya
Choreography and dancing by Vera Kachinskaya
A lonely naked man is fast asleep, surrounded by the sounds of his dreams. The protagonist wakes up in an unfamiliar area, there is no one around. The Voice appeals to him, it's a mother's voice, which accompanies him and brings him to conversation. When the man is ready to answer, the Voice breaks off. The dance sets in.

Do You Mind Can I Ask What Happened (To Your Legs?), 2022, United Kingdom, 16 min

Directed by Simon Fildes, Abby Warrilow, Lewis Gourlay
Produced by Victoria Watson, Carys Evans
Choreography by Abby Warrilow
Dancing by Calum Barbour, Tess Letham
Writer by Simon Fildes
"'Do You Mind Can I Ask What Happened (To Your Legs?)' is a semi-narrative moving image work that reflects on what it’s like to experience having a progressive degenerative condition and is the late Simon Fildes' most tender and compelling work. The film is a love story with a twist, set in the beautiful landscape surrounding the Scottish highland Village of Achiltibuie. Part drama, part screendance, the film draws upon the filmmakers’ deep rooted passion for movement both physically and in-camera.

Sound of Movement, 2021, Germany, 3 min

Produced and Directed by Daniela Meise
Choreography by Minh-Thu Nguyen
Synopsis coming soon.
Frame from The Wilyabrup Project

The Wilyabrup Project, 2021, Australia, 6 min

Directed by Brenna Day, Steven Aliyan
Produced by Brenna Day
Featuring Brenna Day and Bonnie Blewitt
Above the waves, beneath the sky, against the rock. Moving against a staggering vertical cliff face, suspended above wild crashing ocean, two artists dance with the roaring wind and each-other in a celebration of human connection, our experience of nature and the vast wilderness that is the Wilyabrup sea cliffs. A choreographed performance of two bodies in gravity-defying motion tethered to the rockface, this vertical dance frames the artform against truly wild nature that shows the beauty, fragility and resilience of the human body and the environment. Filmed on Wadandi land in the south west of Western Australia.