The dancing tree
Gilda Lazar doesn’t need a long introduction. In short she is now Director of Corporate Affairs & Communication at JTI Romania, Moldova and Bulgaria, associate professor at University of Bucharest where she teaches a course on CSR and Corporate Affairs, and President of the “Friends of the Opera”. She had the pleasure to talk about art discovered in a “different” city.
A few days ago in Chisinau, a random encounter brought another: JTI Meetings at the second edition in Moldova ( the 14th, in Romania), invited on the scene of the National Theatre Mihai Eminescu, “Gigi Caciuleanu Romania Dance Company ” who performed the show D’ale noastre based on texts of the great IL. Caragiale. The premiere took place in Bucharest last year, so I did not watch the show for the first time. After Bucharest, the company started European tour: Paris, Brussels, London, and Sofia under the title Ta Ra Ta Tam. At the end of November, Ta Ra Ta Tam can be seen in Lisbon, with the support of the Romanian Cultural Institute. I also knew Gigi Căciuleanu for a while. The first “meeting” with the choreographer was occasioned by JTI Meetings edition 2011, when he brought to Bucharest Noche Bach, with the National Ballet of Chile. Here’s what Gigi Caciuleanu says about D’ale noastre “I internationalized IL Caragiale, I translated it into my language, the language movement, of surrealism, of modernity. Coane Joitici can be seen anywhere and children like Mr. Goe are in many families , Cațavencu is universal. What is interesting in this show highlights not what characterizes the Romanian society but the universal habits.
What better could happen to me? In the morning of the 4th of November, when Gigi Căciuleanu and his dancers headed to the place that Gigi always wore in the suitcase, the place of his roots Mășcăuți village, I had no idea that the road will not be an easy journey. I found, in Criuleni district, honest, warm and modest people, pure as from another world, amazed by the joy and the luck of welcoming the artist. People in Mășcăuți, teachers and pupils from the local high school named after his great-grandfather, Ion Sârbu – the first Moldavian poet who wrote fables in Romanian with Cyrillic characters greeted Gigi with bread and salt. And the surprises followed: they recited poems but not the poetry of Gigi’s grandfather, but Gigi ‘s own poems; we watched a film in which he and Miriam Raducanu danced retrieval and separation, they asked questions, they wanted to hear stories of his childhood, to know about his memories, joys, pains, faith. They wanted to keep as much as they could from what Gigi Căciuleanu represented for their land . The choreographer entered with emotion in Mășcăuți church, founded by his grand grandfather Alexandru Sârbu; then stopped to Sarbu family mansion and recollected at the graves of the Sarbu nobles. In the court of the mansion , Gigi stopped near a tree with a straight trunk and twisted branches: “I am feeling a lot of emotions; I know this tree from my grandparents’ stories, I’ve always heard about it, that it dances, it is moved by the wind and history. My grandmother always told me about the tranquility, that we now also feel standing next to it.”
Some time ago, when asked about where his roots are, Gigi Căciuleanu responded: “in my suitcase. I feel at home every time I get on stage. The important things are the branches of a tree, the ones which rise to the sky, because I can take the roots with me wherever I go.”
Following the meeting with the places and people of Mășcăuți, Căciuleanu will henceforth take them in his suitcase everywhere in the world. And for us who have had the joy of accompanying him in his emotional journey, we will always have memories of this part of haven and of the purity of the people belonging to a world beyond.
Gigi Căciuleanu next show in Chișinău is OuiBaDa, “so that it is known here as well, that we said: ‘Yes, we can’, before Obama.” And I would warmly recommend you to see it; if possible in Chisinau, rather than anywhere else.