Interview with Adrienn Hód
choreographer of Conditions of Being a Mortal

Do you notice a difference in audience between different countries and/or cities?
The reaction of the audience is related rather to different evenings and the given show and as most of our piece work with nudity, people can have different reactions. In Scandinavian or places where society is more acceptable towards nude bodies, it’s smoother, we seem to be more ordinary. But for example in the Balkan region, when we played another piece, which also contains nudity, some men took their wives outside the performance, then came back alone. There we really could see the strong and immediate reactions, which was also nice to see.

What is your opinion on the social relevance of theatre?
Theatre is a platform where taboo topics can be treated, which is sometimes difficult for people. Theatre is a place where we can re-live traumas, as well, and a source of inspiration, showing us new dimensions and ideas. Theatre is a game for grown-ups, fiction, a created dimension that provides us with a huge freedom; this freedom is where the ideas come from, so it’s very important for me. Theatre can also show general topics, it can react on the recent happenings in the world, can give a way to interpret these happenings. Theatre can talk a lot about a given culture, country, about the local people about their everyday life.

What drives you to be creative?
That’s a complex question! On one hand there’s this challenge that I should find something that is so important to me that I share with other people that I make an onstage “copy” and I give a form to it. I’m really interested in the mediator quality of moving bodies and the forms, the way it can transfer contents. Also there’s the existence behind creation, this is what I had learned, that’s what I know, that’s how I earn my life. This is true especially when my creative dynamic doesn’t correspond to the state funds open call regularity (one new production each year), but this is how I can keep a continuity and work.  And there are situations when creation is not a choice but there’s a mass inside that has to get out of me.

What role did theatre/dance have for you when you grew up?
I go to see other theatre and dance pieces quite often. I teach dance, I work as choreographer in commercials, in movies and theatre pieces. Besides, I do own creations. So theatre is my profession. I spend the most of my time on it and I love it.

If you hadn’t become an artist, what would have been your profession?
When I was a kid, I wanted to clean the streets as it has an immediate result. Then I wanted to be a landscape designer, designing gardens. Nowadays, maybe an assistant to the director, or sell pastries in a shop or in a market. And bartender at an open air pub, at the Caribbean see.

Where does your fascination for the human body and her way of moving come from?
As a child I used to dance to my dad’s classical disks and I was watching myself in the glass of the cupboard. I imagined a whole choreography around me, with parts when only the others dance around me. Then as a youngster, I got into an amateur ballet school, I liked the teacher’s dress and her ring, the mirrors, the music, the jumps and pirouettes and I was good at it. I enjoyed that it’s not the normal existence, I fly, I slide, I turn, I have very good experiences of dancing. I had dreams that I can keep turning on one foot without stopping, continuously. I like when bodies play with each other, like dogs in the grass, with no limit, they perceive everything through their bodies, they trust it, and it works, they fly. I like when the human body does the same, it sweats, it gets tired, it works with the others. It creates sensations we don’t understand, we cannot comprehend, it contains something understandable and the unknown, as well. It works in everyday life than it changes and gets something totally different.

The performance includes a lot of naked dancers. What does nudity on stage mean to you?
Naked bodies are more free, they don’t have a coded meaning on them and it’s more beautiful than covering them. Nudity is not a tool of provocation for me but the beauty.

Where do you get your inspiration from for your choreography?
From life, from the things around me, the way I perceive, it can be anything.

During your performance you use an almost complete classical composition. Could you explain this choice?
Originally I had Dante Symphony by Liszt, that was a bit short, than we talked a lot with my colleague, Zoltán Mizsei, composer and musician, I asked him to show me something related to love, to light, to celestial dimensions, so we got to Faust Symphony.

Which role plays the Faust story in your performance? Which aspects could the audience recognize during the show?
Faust is looking for happiness and satisfaction and he does anything for it. There’s a slight connection to this in the last part of the piece. We try to be something then we have to face a challenge, we try our best to resolve it, to accomplish, to get happiness and satisfaction, we get anxious. I see the connection at this point, at dissatisfaction.