Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui met Gregory Maqoma in 2001 at PARTS, the dance school of Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, where dancer Shanell Winlock from Johannesburg, also studied. Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, Gregory Maqoma and Shanell Winlock had long dreamed of a joint creation.
Cherkaoui has choreographed Bound for the two dancers. Bound is a pas de deux that examines the link, attachment, the node, the one that is formed and the one that comes undone. As the boxes in Sutra or the frames in Babel(words), Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui built the choreography around a single element. Both scenic objects and gestural partners, the ropes are wrapped around the body, stand like trees from which gallows are hanging or draw Japanese gardens on the floor. Drawing on the three collaborators’ cultural backgrounds, Bound explores the ways in which we are bound to each other, our heritage, and our desires. The piece focuses on the movements of linking body parts, which can be limiting but also create potential for both dancers to find an articulation together. The characters on stage attempt to move in different directions but are bound to each other either physically, emotionally or through history.
Bound is presented together with the duet Southern Comfort, created by Gregory Maqoma and Shanell Winlock in 2001. Both duets are accompanied live by three musicians Stefan Knapik (cello), Soumik Datta (sarod) and Manjunath B Chandramouli (percussion), drawing on European and South Asian traditions.