Örjan Andersson on Goldberg Variations: ternary patterns for insomnia

Hear from Örjan Andersson, director of Andersson Dance on his collaboration with Scottish Ensemble.

25 January 2023

Örjan Andersson in rehearsals for Goldberg Variations

What first interested you about collaborating with Scottish Ensemble?  

I first went to London in 2015 and was stunned by their performance and also by their curiosity in working with other art forms such as dance. Scottish Ensemble had that energy to go outside their comfort zone which was very contagious for me.


Music and dance are closely connected art forms, were there any differences or similarities that stood out to you when working with musicians and dancers in this way?  

Of course, there is the difference between the trained body of a dancer and of the musicians but I usually give the same physical task to both the groups to solve. The end result will of course be different but not necessarily better for the dancer always. It can be very moving to see an “ordinary“ body moving in space and time.

Are there any stand-out moments from making or touring the show that always comes back to mind?

There are many stand-out moments in this show and I really like the work so I actually always have a very nice time watching it and so for me it’s the whole journey through the variations that speaks to me.

Of course, our first meeting in the studio with SE is a moment I never forget. Particularly the excitement in the group when I gave them the first task to solve physically. Great fun!


The Goldberg Variations are such well-known and loved pieces of music, how do you go about creating choreography for pieces like this?  

I try to come up with choreographic material that together with the music will create a new way of hearing the music. A lot of the time I can work without the music to create material and then add the music and hopefully a new way of interpreting the music will be born. You will hopefully hear the music differently as well.


What excites you about bringing this show back to Scotland after such a long time?  

I love Scotland and the kind people there. We had such a good first performance period there so I hope this will be repeated again. The work and performers have definitely matured in a good way so it’s also a better piece today.

Goldberg Variations- ternary patterns for insomnia, goes on tour in the UK from the 3rd till the 9th of March, with dates in Glasgow, Inverness, Dundee and Leeds.

Goldberg Variations

ternary patterns for insomnia

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