GHOST TRIO A - corps furtifs


Presence and absence, empty spaces and in-between worlds! The CocoonDance company presents during the Beethoven Fest in Bonn the first part of its new dance production “GHOST TRIO A - corps furtifs”, which is based on Beethoven's Piano Trio in D major, Op. 70 No. 1 -- the so-called "Ghost Trio".  Inspired by Samuel Beckett's "Ghost Trio", a late television play written by the author in 1975, the dancers approach the unspeakable by relentlessly using their bodies as a medium.


The performance with three dancers and a pianist is built upon specific theatre dispositive to  examine the dimensions of space, music (sound) and time in order to answer the following questions: Are you there, even if I don’t  see you? If I can neither hear you nor feel you? The effects that music and cinema can conjure through editing become a challenge in the purely physical world. On stage, everything is taken off the bodies of the bodies which contributes to their identification as human beings and bodies. This leads to an exciting “hide-and-seek” game with the spectators who are looking for certainty and orientation. As soon as the audience manages to fill in the blanks, something else confusing shows up. That’s the task of the ghosts!


As ghosts of the past Beethoven and Beckett are both welcomed guests, but they both appear to us in a re-interpreted way as fragments of memories. Of the trio, for example, only the pianist is visible.  The string players stay in their intermediate world - not visible, but present.


For further information  


CocoonDance: GHOST TRIO A - corps furtifs

World Premiere: September 17, 2017, at 8.30 p.m.

Additional Performance: September 16, 2017, at  8.30 p.m.

Location: “Geneva Hall”, World Conference Center Bonn - in conjunction with the 2017 Beethovenfest


By and with: Álvaro Esteban, Daniel Morales, Werner Nigg // Choreography, direction: Rafaële Giovanola // Dramaturgy, concept: Rainald Endraß // Live-Electronic, composition: Jörg Ritzenhoff // PianoBeatrice Berrut // Light design: Tobias Heide // Costumes: Annika Ley // Advice: Space, light: Boris Kahnert // Choreographic Assistance: Leonardo Rodrigues // Movement research: Fa-Hsuan Chen, András Déri, Martina De Dominicis, Greta Salgado, Susanne Schneider, Marie Viennot // Management: Mechtild Tellmann


Funded by Kunststiftung NRW, Ministerium für Kultur und Wissenschaft des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen, Bundesstadt Bonn and Théâtre-ProVS, Le Conseil de la Culture Etat du Valais, La Loterie Romande.

Trailer by Michael Maurissens/ Carré Blanc Productions



"In order to make the misalliance of music, choreography and dance at the same time visible, audible and comprehensible, the production created a magnificent spatial environment which, through its free arrangement, opened for the spectator multifaceted perspectives, at times even catapulting the audience right into the dance action. (...)

But it also created a splendid framework for the dance itself: three smaller spectator blocks offered either a lateral or a frontal view into the room, in front of each a screen to which, filmed with night vision camera, only the silhouettes and shadows of the dancers are transmitted and they thereby seem to be floating in an unreal translucent transparency through the room. However, if your view wanders beyond the screen, you can watch the three dancers performing real-life in the room. As in a picture puzzle, the spectator can thus create his own astonishing moments, and his own reality. (...)

In that environment, Rafaële Giovanola's choreography lets the dancers oscillating between reality and fiction, fluctuating and floating through the movements. Sometimes the dancers seem to be irresistibly drawn to each other, and then they are again  hastily diverging each other’s way. Just a moment ago real and present, they’re losing their physicality on the screen and seem to dissolve, but where? Already in the next moment, just barely escaping from the view of the night vision camera, they are re-emerging alive with new movements and a new idea of life. (...)

One cannot display more vividly the separation from one's own corporeality. As it is often the case with the dance productions of CocoonDance, the spectator must find himself either a steady hold or a vanishing point from the reality. (...) Dancing as a pure form of representation is far exceeded in this concept, but the dance is assigned to perform existential tasks of life analysis and coping with life itself. Here we can also see the point of contacts with Samuel Beckett's play "Ghost Trio" which inspired this exceptionally touching production. A strong piece."

(Klaus Keil,, night review)


"Once again an exciting play with the perception, which is often the subject of exploration in the productions by choreographer Rafaële Giovanola and dramaturge Rainald Endraß, the two founders and directors of CocoonDance. (...) In this piece, which as a further reference is inspired by Samuel Beckett's cinematic Beethoven tribute "Ghost Trio" from the 1970s, the horror becomes a driving moment.  The is almost physically palpable when one of the dancers crosses the room completely unclothed, shivering and gasping: he is the personified naked fear. A deeply impressive evening (...) ".

(Bernhard Hartmann, Bonner General-Anzeiger)


"At the forefront of the production is the "ghostly" of the title, understood as the complex of the unexpectedly apparent, only shadowy localizable, the lack of trust in one’s own judgement, the puzzling strangeness of perception and encounter. (...)

This (piece) is choreographically exciting and ingeniously structured. (Choreography: Rafaële Giovanola) The changing movements seem to be triggered by the changes in the music, the time factor or changes in the lighting. The dance aspect in the usual sense remains deliberately to be left out. Giovanola relies entirely on scenic effects, gymnastic elements or the direct physical expression. This can also turn out grossly as in the last scene in which one of the dancers is naked, seemingly freezing and violently trembling, exhaustingly tripping through the room and disappearing into the darkness. A spirit that became alive or an alien in the stage of mutation. "Ghost Trio A - corps furtifs" is mysterious and fascinating at the same time. "

(Jürgen Bieler, Bonner Rundschau)