Kilma Hilwa / Zait Zaytoun

Marah Haj

"I created these two short pieces during my last year of the Bachelor programme in Dance, trying to answer the question: What is the placement of one’s mother tongue – when it’s not English – within artistic practices that evolve in surroundings where no one speaks it?"

About Kilma Hilwa: how can language be used for something other than communication? How do we respond to a language that is “foreign” from us?

Based on recordings in Arabic, the 4 non-Arabic speaking dancers create a relationship between them and what they hear according to their own imagination. This piece is an attempt to create a relationship that goes beyond the superficiality of the first impressions that are automatically built between us and what is “strange” from us, and to really start listening to what it’s trying to tell us.
Concept and coaching: Marah Haj – Performance: Emma Dieltiens, Maisie Woodford, Jeran Entwistle, Mira Slootmaekers.

About Zait Zaytoun: Being Arabic - the mother tongue of me and Mokhallad - absent from our current daily life in Belgium, we decided to bring it with us on stage. After deciding our simple dialogue that deals with the topic of Arabic names, we chose consciously to not offer subtitles during the performance. Instead, we approached the language as a correlation between words and actions. The conversation between those two elements creates a certain musicality, a certain tempo that helps the watcher to keep on following. You are also invited to read the paper of the English translation of our dialogue.
Concept and choreography: Marah Haj - in collaboration with Mokhallad Rasem - Performance: Marah Haj and Mohanad Askoul - Music: Alf Leila We Leila by Umm Kulthum - Sound design: Raphael Malfliet

Dates & tickets