History

The contemporary Brazilian dance company Grupo Corpo, founded by Paulo Pederneiras in 1975, in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, debuted its first work, Maria Maria, the very next year. Featuring original music by Milton Nascimento, a script by Fernando Brandt and choreography by the Argentine Oscar Araiz, the ballet would go on to spend six years on stage and tour fourteen countries. But even though the piece was an immediate critical, popular and commercial success, the group´s distinctive artistic identity, its long-term popularity and its artistic achievements have been the fruits of a long, arduous journey. As a result, the group started operating in its own premises as of 1978.

While the success of Maria Maria was still reverberating throughout Brazil and in various European and Latin American countries, Grupo Corpo (literally Body Group in English) never stopped working, staging no less than six productions between 1976 and 1982. In the first phase of the group´s existence, the influence of Araiz, who in 1980 would write O Último Trem, was evident in varying degrees in the dance troupe´s work. However, the company´s distinctive features and personality were chiefly molded by Paulo Pederneiras, the man responsible for sets and lighting the group´s performances and its artistic direction and the dancer Rodrigo Pederneiras, who left the stage in 1981 to assume the role of full-time choreographer.

In 1985, the company launched what would be its second great success: Prelúdios, a theatrical piece incorporating twenty-four Chopin preludes interpreted by pianist Nelson Freire. It was the group´s first collaboration with Freusa Zechmeister, who remains the company´s costume designer. The show debuted to public and critical acclaim at the First International Dance Festival of Rio de Janeiro and would cement the group´s reputation in the world of contemporary Brazilian dance.

Grupo Corpo then entered a new phase, establishing its own unique theatrical language and choreography. Starting with an erudite repertoire featuring the works of Richard Strauss, Heitor Villa-Lobos and Edward Elgar, among others, the company began combining classical technique with a contemporary re-reading of popular Brazilian dance forms. This would become the group´s trademark.

In 1989, the creative nucleus of the company gained another important collaborator in artist Fernando Velloso. Alongside Zechmeister and Paulo Pederneiras, Velloso helped establish the group´s visual identity, acting as set designer until 2002, when Paulo Pederneiras took over the responsibility.

In the same year the group debuted Missa do Orfanato, a complex theatrical reading of Mozart´s Missa Solemnis k.139. Almost operatic in dimensions, this ballet became such an esthetic triumph that, nearly two decades later, it remains in the company´s repertoire.

The group underwent a radical transformation three years later with the production of 21, a ballet which confirmed the uniqueness of Rodrigo Pederneiras´s choreography and the unmistakable persona of the dance troupe. Utilizing the singular sounds of Brazilian instrumental group Uakti, as well as ten themes composed by Marco Antônio Guimarães, 21 leaves behind the group´s preoccupation with technical form and sees it taking apart melodies and rhythms in order to explore their underlying ideas. The decision to once again use specifically composed scores – a mark of the group´s first three shows in the 1970s – allowed it to further explore the language of popular Brazilian dance. As the critic Rui Fontana Lopes put it, the group had finally found "the most precise translation of the word ballet into the mother tongue."

In the work that followed, Nazareth, Rodrigo Pederneiras´s fascination with traversing the worlds of both popular and erudite music found a perfect opportunity for fuller expression. Inspired by the verbal games of Brazilian literary icon Machado de Assis (1839-1908) and by the works of Ernesto Nazareth (1863-1934), a seminal figure in the formation of Brazilian popular music, the work was scored by composer and literary theorist José Miguel Wisnik. Though built on a solid, classical foundation, the production brought together in good-humored fashion the light-hearted and sensual elements inherent Brazilian popular dances.

The partnership of Grupo Corpo with contemporary authors has been such a success that scores composed especially for the company have become the norm, and each score has inspired a new creation. An exception came in 2004 with the production of Lecuona, a work that drew on thirteen love songs by the Cuban composer Ernesto Lecuona (1895-1963) and in which Rodrigo Pederneiras demonstrated his gift for the creation of pas- de- deux.

Beginning in the mid-1990s, nearly two decades after its inception, Grupo Corpo intensified its international touring. Between 1996 and 1999, it was the resident dance company of the Maison de la Danse in Lyon, France. Several of the group´s creations (Bach, Parabelo and Benguelê) were first staged in Europe over this period.

Today, having created 35 choreographies and more than 2,300 pieces, the Brazilian dance company maintains ten ballets in its repertoire and gives 80 performances a year in places as distinctive as Iceland and South Korea, the United States and Lebanon, Canada, Italy, Singapore, the Netherlands, Israel, France, Japan and Mexico.

The minimalism of Philip Glass (Sete ou Oito Peças para um Ballet); the vigorous pop and urban sounds of Arnaldo Antunes (O Corpo); the primordial experimentalism of Tom Zé (Santagustin and, with Wisnik, Parabelo); the African sensibility of João Bosco (Benguelê); the metaphysical verse of Luís de Camões and Gregório de Mattos; the light touch of Caetano Veloso and Wisnik (Onqotô); the rootsy modernity of Lenine (Breu); the poetry of polarities (Ímã): Grupo Corpo has drawn on all of these elements and more to produce shows of a very diverse character – cerebral, cosmopolitan, primitive, existential, tough – while always keeping in sight the company´s distinctive traits.

GRUPO CORPO ON THE ROAD

ARGENTINA   Buenos Aires   La Plata   AUSTRALIA   Perth   AUSTRIA   Innsbruck   Graz   Saint Pölten   BELGIUM   Antwerp   Bruges   Brussels   Gent   Turnhout   BRAZIL   Aracaju   Atibaia   Belém   Belo Horizonte   Blumenau   Brasília   Caxias do Sul   Coronel Fabriciano   Curitiba   Florianópolis   Fortaleza   Goiânia   Governador Valadares   Ilhéus   Ipatinga   Itabira   João Pessoa   Joinville   Juiz de Fora   Londrina   Maceió   Manaus   Mariana   Montes Claros   Natal   Ouro Preto   Paulínia   Pelotas   Ponta Grossa   Porto Alegre   Recife   Ribeirão Preto   Rio de Janeiro   Sabará   Salvador   Santos   São João del Rei   São Luis   São Paulo   Teresina   Timóteo   Uberaba   Uberlândia   Vitória   CANADA   Assomption   Baie-Comeau   Banff   Montreal   Ottawa   Quebec   Sherbrooke   Vancouver   Vernon   Toronto   CHILE   Santiago de Chile   CHINA   Macao   COLOMBIA   Bogota   Cali   COSTA RICA   San Jose   ECUADOR   Guayacquil   Quito   ENGLAND   Birmingham   Bradford   Brighton   Epson   High Wycombe   Hull   London   Manchester    Nottingham   Paignton   Plymouth   Salford   Sheffield   Skegness   Southampton   FINLAND   Kuopio   FRANCE   Aix-en-Provence   Albi   Alès  Annecy   Annemasse   Arcachon   Bayonne   Belfort  Biarritz   Cannes   Chambéry   Dijon   Gap   Grenoble   La Rochelle   Le Creusot   Lyon   Martigues   Massy   Montpellier  Mulhouse   Nanterre   Narbonne   Paris   Perpignan   Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines   Sète   Sochaux   Roubaix   Rueil-Malmaison   Tarbes   Toulouse   Valence   Valenciennes   GERMANY   Aschaffenburg   Baden-Baden   Bonn   Essen   Frankfurt   Friedrichshafen   Fulda   Fürth   Hannover   Heilbronn   Karlsruhe   Leverkunsen   Ludwigsburg   Ludwigshafen   Neuss   Recklinghausen   Remscheid   Schweinfurt   Velbert   Weimar   Wiesbaden   Wolfsburg   GREECE   Athens   HUNGARY   Budapest   ICELAND   Reykjavik   IRELAND   Belfast   ISRAEL   Jerusalem   Tel Aviv   ITALY   Bologna   Brescia   Cremona   Ferrara   Milan   Modena   Reggio Emilia   Spoleto   Turin   Viareggio   Vicenza   JAPAN   Tokyo   LEBANON   Baalbeck   LUXEMBOURG   Luxembourg   Wiltz   MEXICO   Mexico City   Guadalajara   Guanajuato    Monterey    Puebla    Zacatecas   NETHERLANDS   Den Haag   NEW ZEALAND   Wellington   PORTUGAL   Lisbon   Porto   PUERTO RICO   San Juan   RUSSIA   Moscow   SCOTLAND   Edinburgh   SINGAPORE   Singapore   SLOVENIA   Ljubljana   SOUTH KOREA   Seoul    SPAIN   Barcelona   Bilbao   Gijon   Granada   Las Palmas   Madri   Oviedo   Palma de Mallorca   San Sebastian   Santander   Valencia   Valladolid   SWITZERLAND   Baden   Basel   Fribourg  Lugano   Monthey   Schaffhausen  Winterthur   Zug   Zurich   TAIWAN   Taipei   THAILAND   Bangkok   URUGUAY   Montevideo   USA   Amherst   Anchorage   Ann Arbor   Austin   Beckett   Boston   Chicago   Cleveland   Colorado Springs   Columbus   Dallas   Davis   Elmira   Fairfax   Fayetteville   Houston   Humboldt   Iowa City  Key West   Long Beach   Los Angeles   Miami   Minneapolis   Nashville   New Orleans   Newark   Nova York   Oswego   Palo Alto   Park City   Philadelphia   Pittsburgh   Portland   Purchase   Richmond   Riverside   Saint Louis   San Diego   Santa Barbara  Seattle   Stanford   Tucson   Washington   West Palm Beach   VENEZUELA   Caracas   WALES   Cardiff

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Sponsorship Belo Horizonte
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Amigos do Corpo



ADRIANA ALMEIDA DO CARMO, ADRIANA ALVARES BATISTA, ALBERTO ORTENBLAD FILHO, ALESSANDRA CRISTINA PIMENTA, ALEXANDRE DA SILVA BORGES, ALEXANDRE MARQUES FERRARA, ALOISIO FEDERMAN CAIXETA, ANA CAROLINA BHERING DE CARVALHO COSTA, ANA CLAUDIA GAMA, ANA MARIA PORTUGAL MAIA SALIBA, ANDERSON FERREIRA SERRA, ANDRÉ PEREIRA GARCIA RAMOS, ANDRÉ WILLE ROSÁRIO, ANDREA DE CAMPOS VASCONCELLOS, ANDREIA ANGEL DE MORAES DOMINGUEZ, ANNA DA SOLEDADE VIEIRA, ANTÔNIO BATISTA DA SILVA JÚNIOR, BARBARA FERREIRA PIRES, BEATRIZ BRITO RIBEIRO DE OLIVEIRA, CAMILLO DE ALCÂNTARA CÉSAR, CARLOS ALBERTO ARRUDA DE OLIVEIRA, CARLOS ROBERTO VASCONCELOS NOVAIS, CAROLINE DE OLIVEIRA NERY, CÉLIA MARIA MEDEIROS DA ROCHA PAES, CÉLIO AUGUSTO MARTINS LIMA, CÍCERO ALBERTO MAFRA, CLAUDIA FIRMINO BARROS SANTOS, CLAUDIA MARIA QUIROGA DA CUNHA, CLAUDIA MARIA VILAS FREIRE, DALVA PEREIRA MACHADO, DEISE ESTEFÂNIA DE SOUZA DUTRA, DENISE STARLING ARAÚJO DE FREITAS, DORA MARIA BARBOSA TORRES BUCEK, ELINE COELHO GOES, ELIZABETH GAELZER JEOLÁS VALADARES, ELIZABETH MACHADO DE OLIVEIRA, ELLEN KATHRIN PFEFFER, EMERSON DE ALMEIDA, ERICO MEDEIROS JACOBINA AIRES, FERNANDA SIQUEIRA DE QUEIROZ VARELLA, FERNANDA TAVARES RIBEIRO DE OLIVEIRA, FERNANDO SOARES BRAGANCA, FLÁVIA CAMBRAIA MARINHO QUEIROZ, GILBERTO HOCHMAN, GREICE BALTIERI, GUILHERME ARANTES ROSA MACIEL, GUILHERME BRITO RIBEIRO DE OLIVEIRA, GUSTAVO DE CASTRO MAGALHÃES, HELSON ANSELMO DUARTE, IZABEL CORREA DE OLIVEIRA, IZABELA KARENNINA TRAVIZANI MAFFRA, JACQUELINE FINKELSTEIN, JOANA PAULA PRIMEIRA DE RESENDE PINTO, JOÃO MARCO MACIEL DA SILVA, JOÃO PEDRO GAVA ROTTA, JOSÉ ALBERTO NEMER, JOSÉ MARTINS QUINTÃO, JOSÉ ROBERTO ALMEIDA FEITOSA, JÚNIA MARIA VILAS FREIRE, KÊNIA MARIA CUNHA MARQUES GROSSI, LEANDRO JOSE VILAS BOAS, LEONARDO MOREIRA RESENDE, LEONARDO NASCIMENTO LACERDA, LETICIA RODRIGUES DE ALENCAR, LILIAN JACOTO, LUCIANA SARMENTO DRUMOND, LÚCIO ANTÔNIO CHAMON JUNIOR, LUISA FREIRE PEDERNEIRAS BARBOSA, LUIZ CARLOS GENOVES JÚNIOR, LUIZ HENRIQUE SOUZA LIMA DE VASCONCELLOS, LUIZA MARIA EKMAN SCHENBERG, LUZIA HELENA DA CUNHA, MAGDA FRANCISCA GONÇALVES ROCHA, MAIRA OLIVEIRA CAIAFA, MAIURA FREITAS PEIXOTO, MARCELO AUGUSTO DE ALMEIDA BRITO, MARCO AURÉLIO CROCCO AFONSO, MARCOS GOMES DE AMORIM, MARIA AUXILIADORA GOMES DE REZENDE, MARIA CLARA ABATI GREGGIO, MARIA CLARA DUARTE TEIXEIRA, MARIA DE FÁTIMA MARTINS HORTA, MARIA DE LOURDES BARRETO CARNEIRO, MARIA DO CARMO DOS SANTOS MACEDO, MARIA ELISA BAPTISTA, MARIA EUGÊNIA DA ROCHA, MARIA HERMÍNIA DE ALMEIDA, MARIA INÊS TAVARES PINTO COELHO, MARIA IZABEL MACEDO DE LIMA, MARIA LUCIA MACHADO VIANA, MARIA LUIZA VASCONCELOS NASCIMENTO, MARILIA COSTA E SILVA, MARKO UHLIG, MARTA VIEIRA BOGEA, MARTHA REGINA COELHO TEIXEIRA LASSANCE, MARZULO PAGANI VIVACQUA, MIGUEL ANGELO CAMPOS RIBEIRO, MIRIAM GANDELMAN, MIRIAM LINS DE MACEDO, MIRIAM OLIVEIRA E ROCHA, NELSON BAISI CERQUEIRA, NILCE ALVES DOS SANTOS, NILSON FONSECA AMARAL, NIVALDO DOS SANTOS FERREIRA, PEDRO MARCOS OLIVEIRA BELLO, RAFAEL GERALDO DE QUEIROZ SOUZA, RAVEL CARLOS DE MIRANDA PIMENTA, REGINA CÉLIA SOARES CLARO, RENATA DA SILVA JAFFAR, RENATO FERREIRA FRANCO, RONAN JACKSON SILVA, SANDRA DE ANDRADE PACHECO, SANDRA MARIA DA MATA AZEREDO, SÉRGIO CARVALHO BANDEIRA DE MELLO, SERGIO HONORIO DE FREITAS, SHEILA REGINA MURGEL VELOSO, SIMONE COSTA NUNES, SUSANA ISABEL VIDAL SEMEDO, TOMAS FISCHER, VANIA LUCIA DE LIMA ANDRADE, VÂNIA MINTZ, VANILDA DA ANUNCIAÇÃO FERREIRA CARDOSO, VERA LÚCIA LAGE DE OLIVEIRA, WAGNER FURTADO VELOSO, WALDETE SANTOS DA INVENÇÃO, WALTER MARINHO DE OLIVEIRA, YARA ALVARENGA DRUMOND