Alexander Vantournhout / CATABATICS

Open level

This workshop starts with a focus on the mobility of the 6 extremities: neck, tailbone, feet and hands. These are often the first points of contact with the floor so it is needed to have strong understanding of them. There are many things to consider before doing, for example, further stretching of the hamstrings, arches and folds.

We will start with improvisation on all fours. We will then work on different falling strategies (Ukemi) and basic “catabatics” which literally means “low(er)-(acro)batics”. These include acrobatics such as cartwheels, stepovers, rainbows, mini rodeo’s, around the clock wheels etc. These elements are all about coordination, rather than virtuosity, strength or flexibility. I will teach all the elements from the basics. Then we will move on to details and finally progress to more advanced forms of catabatics and acrobatics.

Participants, please be dressed with jogging pants and t-shirt, a long sleeves.

Workshop trailer is here.


Alexander Vantournhout (Belgium) studied single wheel, juggling and dance acrobatics at ESAC (Ecole Supérieure des Arts du Cirque, Brussel). From 2010 till 2012 he studied contemporary dance at P.A.R.T.S (School of Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker), created several dance pieces. He taught regularly at ESAC and ACAPA (Academy for Circus and Performance Art, Tilburg, NL) and was a guest lecturer at Codarts (NL), Verigo (IT), Plesni Center, Marbior (SL), Travno Center, Zagreb (HR), Circuscentrum, Concervatoire de Mons (BE), Concorde-Montreal (CA), Hong Kong Circus (CHN).

Alexander’s teaching is inspired by the Fighting Monkey practise, which he has been practising a decade now. There are two constant factors in the work: his search for creative and kinetic potential in physical limitation, and the relationship or boundaries between the performer and the object.

In 2018 Alexander Vantournhout presented his creation “Aneckxander” in New Baltic Dance festival in Vilnius (trailer here).