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la Biennale di Venezia
Main Visual Sezione Danza EN (new)



Virgilio Sieni
Since the ‘80s Virgilio Sieni (Florence, 1957) has been a leading figure in Italian contemporary dance: today he is a renowned choreographer and dancer at an international level, “Among the very few who, through movement, can give birth to works still talking about the “human”, about its weakness and frailty” (Goffredo Fofi) and whose “works are presented as a thought in the form of dance and on dance” (Roberto Giambrone).
Sieni trained in classic and contemporary dance in Amsterdam, New York and Tokyo, but his education also includes studies in the visual arts, architecture and the martial arts. In 1983, he founded the Parco Butterfly company, which in 1992 became the Compagnia Virgilio Sieni; with it - among other numerous awards - he won three UBU prizes in 2000, 2003 and 2011, the year when he also obtained the award of “Lo Straniero” magazine. As a guest choreographer, he has created ballets for leading Italian opera and theatre companies: Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Teatro Comunale in Florence - Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Teatro Massimo in Palermo, Teatro San Carlo in Naples, and Teatro dell'Opera in Rome.

Among his most important works are Osso, La natura della cose, adapted from Lucretius’ De rerum natura, for which he collaborated with philosopher Giorgio Agamben for the drama; Solo Goldberg Improvisation, Tristi tropici, freely adapted from the book Tristes Tropiques by Claude Lévi-Strauss, and his latest theatre performance De anima, inspired by Aristotle. For the creation of his works Sieni has often collaborated with illustrious visual artists, musicians and composers, such as Alexander Balanescu, Ennio Morricone, Steve Lacy, Francesco Giomi/Tempo Reale, Evan Parker, Stefano Scodanibbio, Grazia Toderi, Liliana Moro, Maurizio Nannucci, and Flavio Favelli.

With his company, Sieni not only creates theatre performances, but also offers a research and study program, aimed at the dissemination of contemporary choreographic language through residence, production and training projects. Virgilio Sieni has directed in Florence CANGO Cantieri Goldonetta since 2003, and the Accademia sull’Arte del Gesto since 2007, aimed at the transmission of artistic practice and at establishing a new relationship between training and production. It addresses professional and non-professional dancers, starting from childhood to the elderly and the visually impaired.