Hooman Sharifi Oslo

Lingering of an earlier event

The choreographer Hooman Sharifi, of Iranian descent, tells of a country in which time has no special meaning. A country that has not yet taken place, that has yet to come, but that was seemingly always there. Because there is no time in this country, and so because there are innumerable possibilities of action, life, creation, its inhabitants can live together without ever agreeing – for every problem there will be a solution some time. It is a country in which people can live together because they refuse all change. A country with no prayer houses and with a national anthem with no words. A country without its own flag that might be waved. One day this country is attacked by a neighbouring state – and fear spreads in the population. Lingering of an earlier event tells the story of a country that tries not to go to war.

Hooman Sharifi’s plays are of tremendous physical power. As spontaneous as they sometimes appear to be, their intensity is the result of meticulous consideration and choreography, a movement between theatre, dance and visual art. For Sharifi, like hardly any other contemporary choreographer, the motto is “art is politics” – and politics, to him, means social perception and commitment not by means of superficial analysis or easy-to-read representation of supposedly political topics. Instead he goes deeper, searching for the emotions and structures behind group hierarchies, violence, power and abuse.

Born and raised in Iran, Sharifi is now a Norwegian Citizen. He arrived in Norway solitarily in 1989 at the age of 15. His experience in dance started with hip-hop and street-jazz. Later, at the age of 21, came the technical training of classical ballet and modern dance. In 1997 he was accepted to the 3-year course in choreography with the National College of Ballet and Dance in Oslo, from which he graduated in spring 2000. He has always had an interest in the “cross-work” of dance and theatre, and after graduating he has worked with dramatic as well as visual art. In 2000 he established Impure Company. The statement “art equals politics” where social awareness and commitment defines the word politics, marks the outset for Impure Company and signifies what art is and should be.

NXTSTP partners: Göteborgs Dans & Teater Festival (Göteborg), steirischer herbst (Graz)