Curtain drawn for the Neopost French-speaking dance firm –

Curtain drawn for the Neopost French-speaking dance firm –

Following an accusation of sexual harassment, Geneva choreographer Foofwa d’Imobilité, Swiss Prize for Excellent Dancer 2013, dissolved his firm and canceled his excursions. Explanations.

The discover bars the house web page of the corporate’s web site: “(…) Foofwa and the committee of the Affiliation Cie Neopost Foofwa have determined, by mutual settlement and with remorse, to stop the exercise of the corporate and to dissolve the affiliation.” This announcement places an finish to twenty years of actions carried out by a outstanding determine in modern dance in French-speaking Switzerland.

Prix ​​de Lausanne in 1987, dancer within the New York firm of Merce Cunningham then unbiased choreographer rewarded with a Swiss Prize for “distinctive dancer” in 2013, the Genevan Foofwa d’Imobilité hangs up. The rationale: conditions of discomfort felt by a dancer in her working relationship with the choreographer and director of the corporate.

The world of French-speaking dance is affected by the #MeToo wave and the current consciousness of performing arts artists on points of ethical or sexual harassment. On this context, after the corporate Alias ​​of the choreographer Guilherme Botelho in 2021 and the audit carried out on the Béjart Ballet Lausanne and its inventive path this similar yr 2021, it’s the second Swiss dance firm to stop its actions. Nonetheless, these three circumstances aren’t of the identical diploma of seriousness.

An inappropriate gesture and phrases

What are we speaking about on this case? In response to our data, the events involved have signed, with the assist of the Syndicat suisse romand du spectacle (SSRS), an settlement involving confidentiality. The RTS due to this fact has no information of the precise particulars which fall inside the personal sphere of the 2 individuals involved. It will be an inappropriate gesture, phrases and appears. The information wouldn’t be comparable in seriousness with the conviction of the Geneva choreographer Guilherme Botelho for “sexual touching”.

>> To learn additionally: Geneva launches an investigation into sexual harassment inside the firm Alias

In 2019, the information had been first mediated internally by this firm, which solely has three individuals a yr. In December 2021, the dancer, nonetheless, felt the necessity to increase the problem to the committee of the affiliation overseeing the corporate. A survey was then commissioned by the committee of the Neopost affiliation originally of this yr with an exterior individual specialised within the administration of conflicts at work within the performing arts.

To make sure that this isn’t a recurring downside, a dozen individuals who have labored with the corporate, together with the dancer, had been interviewed. In response to the affiliation’s committee, the investigation dominated out any felony dimension, assimilated these acts of sexual harassment to “clumsiness” relatively than abuse and didn’t reveal any systematic dysfunction inside the firm.

Rumors and stigma

Upon receipt of the conclusions of the investigation, the corporate’s committee notified the granting authorities (Metropolis of Geneva, State of Geneva, Professional Helvetia) in addition to the skilled and union our bodies, whereas on the similar time the choreographer suspended his varied mandates . In settlement with the sponsors, the steadiness of the grant already distributed was used to make sure the salaries of the dancer, supported by the committee in her resolution to depart the Neopost firm, in addition to the third member of the corporate, not involved. straight by the information, however impacted by the cancellations of the deliberate reveals.

In response to the corporate’s press launch, “rumors and stigma have sophisticated relationships with professionals and the general public, jeopardizing the corporate’s future.” Weakened, the latter determined to scuttle herself.

Zero tolerance

The committee says it adopted a transparent line: “Zero tolerance and speedy remedy of any report of ethical or sexual harassment”. He specifies that he “sought a proportionality of the sanctions with the information as they’ve been established and certified.” The RTS couldn’t acquire data on the sanctions.

At present, the previous dancer from the Neopost firm is main a dance mission within the public area towards harassment, a mission initiated by the choreographer on the event of the ladies’s strike. As for Foowfa d’Imobilité, he created a solo efficiency in homage to his deceased mom, additionally a dancer emeritus, as a part of the plastic arts exhibition “Open Finish 2” on the Cimetière des Rois in Geneva. The choreographer can be ending by December the archiving of an organization that may have left its mark on the French-speaking scene and contributed to the worldwide renown of Swiss modern dance.

It needs to be famous that the Metropolis and State of Geneva will converse in November on the outcomes of a survey carried out within the dance and theater circles. A memorandum ought to particularly make it doable to refine the ideas of sexual harassment and the measures to be taken in all proportionality in keeping with the diploma of seriousness of the potential circumstances of harassment.

Thierry Sartoretti/mh

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