Commissioned by the Venice Biennale in 2002, HUNT was Tero Saarinen’s first solo choreography in ten years. Unlike most interpreters of Igor Stravinsky‘s The Rite of Spring, Saarinen wanted to focus on the conflicts within an individual: between masculinity and femininity, good and evil, the fading of beauty…
“It was not my first choice, but I ended up using The Rite of Spring because Stravinsky’s music raises endlessly fascinating, fundamental human themes. He poses questions that I, too, want to deal with in my own works. Whose life is it? Who owns us? Who pulls our strings?
The Rite of Spring is the cruellest and most powerful of Stravinsky’s works. Its primitiveness is frightening yet fascinating in its apparent simplicity. For me, The Rite of Spring is above all music of the unconscious. It lures out humanity’s brutish, animal sides, just as the time when they are seeking to achieve a sacred state.
HUNT examines the duality of life: birth, death and the transience of corporeality. I wanted to dive into the mind and inner conflicts of a person being sacrificed and of the person who offers himself for sacrifice. This initial situation gave me as a performer a rare opportunity to look into myself, to freely mirror my own experiences, and even to visit the roots of my own dancehood.
While creating the piece I felt I still needed a power that would stand up to Stravinsky alongside with the choreography and the lighting design by Mikki Kunttu. That element ended up being multimedia artist Marita Liulia, who adds a live virtual level to the performance. The collaboration also added new themes, which to me, now seem more relevant than ever: the effects of the continuous flood of information and technological advances.”
– Tero Saarinen