In “Retrospectrum - 5 solos for 5 decades”, the 50-year-old choreographer, director and former ballet dancer Tomi Paasonen lets the kinetic and aesthetic archives of his own works flow through his own body. Never has he danced in one of his own pieces before. In 1997 an accident ended his dancing career abruptly. With this solo, he realizes something he has been avoiding for decades. Now it is time for his first solo piece.
For 9 moths, before stepping into the studio, he underwent a deep archival period of his almost 70 projects, created between 1991 and 2018. Now, incorporating elements of it back onto his own body, Retrospectrum refocuses a life's work into a new form. It’s a look back that moves forward and a retrospective that opens worlds resulting from a process of consolidation, distillation and self-embodiment.
As many of his works throughout the years are autobiographical to the performers he has chosen to work with, naturally he has put himself into his own ring of fire. Creating a deeply personal piece, this is a queer autobiography, that goes through the most important life stations using ideas, materials and methods drawn from his own body of work. From growing up as a queer boy in 70ies Finland to his career as a ballet dancer to travelling the world as a choreographer to the return to Finland to take care of the passing of his parents.
Tomi Paasonen’s work is characterized by always doing things that he has never done before. He has worked in a wide variety of contexts and has realized projects with dancers and artists from different disciplines as well as laymen, differently abled dancers and different kinds of minorities. Over the years, he has developed a diverse archive of choreographic and aesthetic working methods and approaches. After 5 years of working primarily as a curator and artistic director of a dance centre in Finland, he has returned to his home and life in Berlin.
Choreography, Dancing, Videos, Soundtrack - Tomi Paasonen
Lighting Design - Asier Solana
Set Assistant - Gabriel Walsh
Sound Assistant - Yuko Matsuyama
Costume Assistant - Anne Fidler
Credit Video: Colin Comfort
With Music by John Metcalfe, Bronski Beat, Mike Koloska, Dr Aaron Wolf Baum, The Space Lady, Kate Bush, Snorri Hallgrímsson, Til Kerlen
Production: Dockart Berlin
Funding: Berliner Senatsverwaltung für Kultur und Europa