Little by little, from scene to scene, the teenagers toughen up. They call out to the adults, directly. Oh, it is not a generational war. Fifty years after, May 68 doesn’t just happen. The actors are on the friendly side. But they walk on the edge. They talk to us face to face. End up shouting loudly. As if they were drunk on a necessary challenge. They cut. They strip. They undermine. In the end there aren’t a lot of questions to ask: why do the adults accept their own silence? And “the feeling of missing their life”? Unable to grab their “right to choose to be someone else”.
It is simple. But implacable. Destabilizing. “We are not alone. We are just without you.”, notice the young people. The leaflet mentioned “choreographic field”? Indeed. There is barely some dance acknowledged as such in Cheptel (Herd). Much more precious: there is a complete presence; to settle down, wait, sneak in and dare to speak in a certain way, point out our escape from the stage, to tell us that the “day of the choice” has come.
It’s a dance critic who writes these lines and who wonders after every Michel Schweizer’s show, how young people like the ones on stage, when they go through the path of dance at school – with its curriculum, ministerial instruction, New dance references, gym teachers, recycled artists – come out dull and lifeless. Where their applied gestures illustrate how a big part of dance – including contemporary dance – is only the discipline of the body and personality restriction.