Simon Mayer, the young Austrian prodigy everyone is talking about, presents his international hit Sons of Sissy at Usine C for two evenings only, April 10 and 11. Subverting the conventions of folklore, this group performance reinvents traditional masculinity and the relationship to homeland. In a show combining audacity, humour and intelligence, the dancers joyfully prance around the stage to the beat of live music. An absolute must-see!
With Sons of Sissy, Simon Mayer offers a work at the intersection of liberating ritual and alpine folklore. In his first work performed in North America, the prolific young dancer and choreographer transports the audience to a village square somewhere in the Tyrolean Alps. Gradually, he drags us into a Schulplattler with his band, peeling back the rural varnish and revealing its heritage in the form of emancipation. The four performers offer reinterpretations of traditional symbols and shake off conventions accompanied by the rhythm of live music. The title “Sissy” could refer to the Austrian empress or the popular insult meaning “scared” or “effeminate”, but whatever the case, Sons of Sissy plays with these referents using humour and boldness, in the process casting a different perspective on tradition and what it means in relation to a country.
“Simon Mayer turns his duets into an exploration of gender by daring to propose a masculine pas de deux, a giant leap forward and a finale stripped bare.”
– Les Inrockuptibles, 2018
Dancer, choreographer, performer and musician, Simon Mayer grew up on a farm in Austria and studied at the Vienna State Opera Ballet School and later at P.A.R.T.S. (Performing Arts and Research Studios) in Brussels. He danced for Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, Wim Vandekeybus and Zita Swoon before starting to develop his own creations. Several of his solos, duos and group works, including o feather of lead (2008), dancing with the soundhobbyist (2011, avec Zita Swoon), Monkeymind (2013), SunBengSitting (2014), Sons of Sissy (2015) and Oh Magic (2017) have achieved international success. His works interweave elements of contemporary dance, Austrian folk dance, electronic music and traditional yodelling.
In 2009, he founded his own band, Rising Halfmoon, as a singer, songwriter and guitarist. His album Monkeymind was released in 2014, followed by SunBengSitting and Sons of Sissy.
In addition to his performances and music career, Simon Mayer was artist-in-residence at Théâtre de L’L in Brussels in 2010-2011 and organizes the Spiel international art festival, which he founded along with his company. He also teaches contemporary, traditional and community dance as well as vocal technique as a guest teacher at the Music and Arts University of Vienna and various international festivals.
Simon Mayer received the outstanding artist award from the Austrian Chancellery in 2017.
CREATIVE AND PRODUCTION TEAM
Idea, choreography, performance, music Simon Mayer Co-creator, performance, music Matteo Haitzmann, Patric Redl, Manuel Wagner Special instruments Hans Tschiritsch Stage and costume design Andrea Simeon Lighting design HannesRuschbaschan, Martin Walitza Artistic consultant Frans Poelstra Tour technical director Jan Maria Lukas Lighting design on tour Sveta Schwin Production Sophie Schmeiser, Elisabeth Hirner Touring production Hiros & Kopf Hoch. Co-production Kopf hoch, brut Wien, Gessnerallee Zurich, zeitraumexit Mannheim, Tanz ist Dornbirn.With the support of the City of Vienna’s Department of Cultural Affairs, The Arts Division and the Culture Division of the Federal Chancellery of Austria, Kulturland Oberösterreich, Vlaamse Gemeenschap, Kunstenwerplaats Pianofabriek, Wp Zimmer Antwerp, Im_flieger, Kunst-Und Kulturverein Spiel
Presented by Usine C, with the support of the Austrian Embassy, the Federal Chancellery of Austria and the Canada Council for the Arts
Dance + Music | Austria | 60 min
1345 Avenue Lalonde, Montréal, QC H2L 5A9
General 38$ / Senior 34$ / Reduced 32$