Swiss Performing Arts Award 2021
Nicole Seiler was born in Zurich in 1970 and studied at the Scuola Teatro Dimitri, the Vlaamse Dansacademie in Bruges, Belgium, and the Rudra Béjart School Lausanne. She founded her “Compagnie Nicole Seiler” in Lausanne in 2002. Her innovative, interdisciplinary works include multimedia pieces such as films, installations and site-specific creations in which she explores the connections between bodies, images and sounds. She has danced in many productions by companies such as Cie. Buissonnière (Philippe Lizon), Teatro Malandro (Omar Porras), Alias Compagnie (Guilherme Botelho), Cie. Philippe Saire and with Massimo Furlan. Cie. Nicole Seiler receives regular funding from the City of Lausanne, the Canton of Vaud, Pro Helvetia, the Loterie Romande and other foundations. In 2009 Nicole Seiler received the culture prize in dance from the Fondation Vaudoise pour la Culture.
Nicole Seiler has always been interested in exploring choreography and video, and since 2010 she has been focusing intensively on the relationship between image and sound. Her earliest works include the “Madame K” dance performances (2004) and their male counterpart “Lui” (2005), in which she used video projections. “Living Room Dancers” (2008), a project in which dance enthusiasts perform their dance style in a living room, with audiences equipped with MP3 players and opera glasses sharing in an otherwise private situation, has been produced in more than 25 cities on three continents and was archived online in 2020 at www.living-room-dancers.com. The 2015 documentary performance “The Wanderers Peace” led in 2020 to the documentary film “Trixie”, with Bastien Genoux. “Palimpsest” (2018), for example, is an audio walk that can be experienced at various locations using an app. “Wouah!” (2020) saw Nicole Seiler create her first piece for children aged four and over, which made a guest appearance at the Swiss Theatre Encounter 2021.
Nicole Seiler’s artistic career is rare in its consistency and tenacity. Over the course of her projects, she serves up one surprise after another, varying the articulation between the body and the image, the voice, the writing and the sound, in a work that is as radical as it is meticulous. Part play of real and virtual, part fundamental dance, part theatre of the absurd in microcosm blending recent memory and distant recollection, stories both big and small, her work is subtle yet strong: as she weaves the steps of the living with the trails of ghosts, she conjures up the dimension of the universal.
Danielle Chaperon, Chair of the Theatre Jury
Isabelle Fuchs, member of the Dance Jury