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Clébio Oliveira: "I communicate through my ideas"

Clébio Oliveira: "I communicate through my ideas"

Clébio Oliveira is a Brazilian dancer, choreographer and contemporary dance teacher. He lives in Berlin since 2008. Clébio won a lot of international prices like the “American National Choreographic Competition” or the “Troféu Culture Award”. Today, Clébio Oliveira is our player of the week!



CCB Magazine: Hello Clébio, who are you and what do you do?

Clébio Oliveira: Hello, I’m Clébio Oliveira. I’m Brazilian. I lived in Rio de Janeiro between 1998 and 2007. I’m dancer, choreographer and contemporary dance teacher. I’m living in Berlin since 2008.

CCB Magazine: How did you get to this?

Clébio Oliveira: I started dance when I was 17 years through folk dance and ballroom dance. After that I got interested in discovering different possibilities about dance and I was always wondering until where this curiosity will take me. Because of dance I traveled already around the world, performing in many different places. So I was graduated by the dance university, UniverCidade da Cidade, in Rio de Janeiro. In 2007 during a tour with the Deborah Colker Dance Company in Germany I decided to try to live in Germany. For some reasons I thought that it will be a nice place to live, to develop my work and to try to become happy.

CCB Magazine: You’ve already achieved a lot in your life: In May 2011 you won the “American National Choreographic Competition” of the Hubbard Street Dance Company Chicago. In August 2012 you awarded by the Magazine TANZ – the most important Dance Magazine in Europe – as “Hoffnungsträger” as a choreographer. In 2012 and 2013 you received the Troféu Culture Award (Natal – RN) for the choreography ”Rio Cor de Rosa“ and ”Strictly No Elephants“. What does it mean to you? What is special about your work and what makes the difference compared to other professional fields and creative branches? 

It's not a good way when choreographers find their own "body language" and become a kind of slave of the own work

Clébio Oliveira: It’s a little bit difficult to answer this question, because normally it’s easier that other persons talk about my work then I do. However, in my work as choreographer I always try to be “attentive to the signs“. And what does it mean? I have the impression that most of the choreographers around the world after while start to do always the same thing in terms of body expression. It seems that when they find their own “body language" they became a kind of slave of their own work… Since 2000 I have been working as choreographer and I was always trying to find a symbiosis between contemporary dance and folk dance. But after a while I came to the point that in my work the body is of course something very important, because I communicate through it, but more important than my body is the idea which guides me through my body. Another important fact about my work is to get inspired by the dancers I’m working with. I like when the dancers influence me in their own way of moving, because I create the choreography also especially for the bodies of my dancers. I also think that the kind of approach I use in my work is something unusual, but in the same time interesting.

CCB Magazine: What do you want to reach or move with your work?

Clébio Oliveira: I don´t think my pieces change the community, but I believe that my pieces can make the communities understand each other better.

CCB Magazine: You are in Berlin since 2008. In Berlin you realized many projects in companies like GRIPS Theater or DOCK 11. What does it mean to you and your work?

Clébio Oliveira: Berlin is a good place to live, because it’s still quite cheap. There are a lot of artists from around the world living here and it’s interesting to have the possibility to get to know several people from different cultures. Personally, sometimes it’s difficult to live here, because you don't always get regular supported by the Senat of Berlin or other institutions, which provide money to support art and culture for new projects. It’s very hard because there are so many freelancers in Berlin and they all want to realize their projects. 

I don´t think my pieces change the community. But I believe that my pieces can make the communities understand each other better

CCB Magazine: If you would have one wish free: How should Berlin develop in the future?

Clébio Oliveira: My wish is, that there is more money for the free scene in Berlin and that this money will be distributed more equally among the freelance artists in Berlin.

CCB Magazine: Clébio, what do you plan for your future?

Clébio Oliveira: As a freelancing choreographer the most difficult thing is the lack of time to develop an idea. Most of the time, I only have 4 months to develop my work. In short time I don´t have time for “mistakes”. And most of the times I don't have time to try different possibilities for the same idea, for example. I need to be fast and smart. When I come to my rehearsal I need to have two different possibilities in my mind – for the same idea. Because if one of them doesn’t work I have another one. My dream would be to have the possibility to get a residence as a choreographer or to have my own company where I could explore my ideas especially with more flexibility in the time management.

CCB Magazine: Clébio, thank you and stay in touch.


Profile of Clébio Oliveira on Creative City Berlin 

Category: New Player

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