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Shawbrook Residency - Veli Lehtovaara in association with Finnish Cultural Foundation

During the residency at Shawbrook, Veli will work on a creation under the title Forest of Harvested Time together with dancers Elias Girod, Kevin Fay and Inga Huld Hákonardóttir. In this creation we will focus attention on the concept of time to explore it from non-human and multi-species perspective. The work will be a deep dive into the forests as choreographic multi- species environments and ecologies where energy and information circulate between different forms of life. How are they organised within themselves and in relation to each other, how do they relate to space in different ways and how time passes in multiple paces among them? What kind of places in all their particularity and complexity forests are and what could we possibly learn from these living entities about coexistence and sustainability? This will be the first longer work period on the project and we will mainly focus on movement research, developing conceptual framework and articulating practices, which we will apply later in the creation.

Veli is a Choreographer, dancer and performer. Lives and works in Helsinki.Lehtovaara holds a BA in dance and MA in choreography from Theatre Academy – University of the Arts Helsinki. He has also graduated from P.A.R.T.S., Brussels and studied in MA program of Philosophy in the University of Jyväskylä, Finland. Lehtovaara often works in a collaborative manner and combines elements from multiple disciplines in his choreographic practice. His creations vary from stage work to film and performance- installations. Lehtovaara’s stage and film work has been touring successfully in Europe and also in North- and South-America on venues and festivals such as: Sadler’s Wells (London), Festival d’Automne (Paris), Festival d’Avignon, NEXT Arts Festival (Belgium), Springdance Festival (Utrecht), Dança em Foco (Brasil), Joyce SoHo (New York). Lehtovaara has worked in close collaboration with Zodiak -Center for New Dance (Helsinki) for several years and he is associated artist of Kunstenwerkplaats Pianofabriek (Brussels) since 2016. Lehtovaara was one of the focus artists of Departures and Arrivals [DNA] –network for the years 2014-2018. Lehtovaara has also worked widely as a performer in the field of dance and experimental theatre. Years 2015-17 he worked as a dancer for Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker / Rosas. Currently Lehtovaara is conducting a research on ecological questions from the perspective of choreographic thinking and corporeality.