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dos joelhos para baixo
Starting off from a drawing produced at Primary School of Campo de Ourique in which the traces of pencil were deleted by an eraser, I noticed that erasing without leaving any trace was impossible. After this episode, I spent a year drawing. I used to select a moment on a day that has happened on a specific space and draw the course that other people and I had done in that place. Thus, in order to enable movement in the sheet of paper it was constantly necessary to erase ourselves and redraw us in other area of the sheet. I realized that the courses and movements of the people in the drawing could be reconstructed through the traces left from the act of erasing. I placed this question on the stage, transferring from the use of paper sheet as the support to the use of space as the support. I kept the paper sheet and worked it on studio making it interact with me. Out of these experiences, that were initially reduced to the transformation of a sheet of paper as a matter in other matters, it came out a series of actions with men and women in paper. These characters are exposed to a sequence of happenings that determine their ending or continuation in the piece. A city of paper slowly starts gaining form.

1st Prize Jovens Artistas Jovens


Creation and Interpretation | Márcia Lança
Artistic Collaboration | Iuri Albarran e Tiago Hespanha
Music and Sound Design | Nuno Morão
Drawings | Márcia Lança
Photography | Iuri Albarran
Artistic Residencies | Espaço do Tempo, Montemor-o-Novo and Atelier*, Lisbon
Production Director | Sérgio Parreira
Production and Tour Management | VAGAR

Duration | 30 minutes
Public | > 6 years / general

*This work has started in the context of the LAB 12.1 at Atelier, with the collaboration of Lénaïg Le Touze and the coaching of Claudia Triozzi, Pedro Costa and João Fiadeiro.
Thanks to
Ana Rita Costa, Andrea Brandão, António Lança, Bruno Caracol, Cláudia Dias, Cristina Cartaxo, Giacomo Scalisi, Lluis Ayet, Mafalda Oliveira, Marie Mignot, Meninos e Meninas do ATL da escola n°6 de Campo de Ourique, Natália Lança, Ninho de Víboras, Nicolas Duquerroy, Observatório Critico dos Jovens Artistas Jovens, Pedro Pires, Raphäel Michon, Sofia Campos, Tiago Lança


“The Winners
Márcia Lança, from Lisbon, won with «O traço e a ausência», a project of dance, that challenges the definition. Her proposition is pertinent and mature at the level of the rigueur and coherence of the interpretation, as well as on the gender of the show that is inserted on a clear contemporary current, more connected to the arts of handcraft and detail. A minuteness and sensibility work, of paper construction, with critical sense and humor.”

Galhoz, C. Retrato do artista enquanto jovem. Expresso. Lisboa. 14th October 06. Actual, p. 20/21.

“Miguel Bonneville and Márcia Lança are two of the names from the new generation of dance creators which move in territories difficult to classify. They hardly dance. The challenge to the spectator is to look at what they propose as singular artistic projects. It’s about the affirmation of a space and an artistic identity which translates the desire of communicating restlessness or to experiment the challenge of creative imagination. The result (the plays they present) might be materialized in different “media” or artistic languages and organizes itself from the combination of images, narrative fragments, arranged in a own personal logics which seldom compose a linear narrative – instead suggesting to the spectator to, departing from the way he relates to what is being presented, build it’s own story and be himself as well, to a certain extent, the author of the play.  (…) Márcia Lança (…) won the contest Jovens Artistas Jovens with her solo “dos joelhos para baixo” which she now presents in Covilhã, In this work she appeals to the children storytellers imaginary but displacing it to an adult imaginary with a delicious attention to details and some irony, from the execution of handcraft works. The major portion of the action consists on ripping paper dolls with which she constructs a world, a “town”, where «a series of actions with man and women built from paper take part»".

Galhoz, C. Novos Mundos. Expresso. Lisboa. 19th May 07. Actual, p. 36.

“First work of the Portuguese choreographer”
An oniric world made of paper signed by Márcia Lança
Spanning from the virtuous enchantment of new circus to the most intimate and refined performance, Márcia Lança revealed herself at the Vie Scena Contemporanea Festival trough her first as an author, as the creator of a onirical world made of paper..(…) Upon the premiere, it becomes the focus of attention of the Portuguese Theater Scene, when it was chosen to the final selection list of works at the “Jovens Artistas Jovens” competition. This award, promoted by Centro Cultural de Belém in Lisbon, its developed in order to provide technical and production support to emerging artists. Although being her first experience as an author, in her curriculum she already has collaborations with the most renowned Portuguese Choreographers, such as João Fiadeiro, recognized as the father of the new generation of Portuguese dancers. Another remarkable name is Cláudia Dias, whom in “Visita Guiada” presents a tour trough out memory lane and a auto biography of the city itself. With Cláudia Dias, Márcia Lança works in “Três Figuras do Excesso”. In “dos joelhos para baixo”, Márcia Lança let herself get influenced by a childhood memory: pencil strokes on a paper sheet and the impossibility of deleting them, and the need of sketching a route that remains clear. This graphical starting point transforms itself in a living shape, suspended between the body of the performer and the paper made structure. The show starts with a small paper figure but its only needed a simple glass of water or a small gash to destroy the universe that was create up to that point, and that multiplies itself in several shapes when transformed by the dancer hands as if it where extensions of a reality that despite all, remains fragile.

Bellini, B. e Oliva, L. Onirico mondo di carta firmato da Márcia Lança. Jornal do Vie Scena Contemporanea Festival. Modena. 15 October 07.

“The fragile destinaty of Man kind told by paper men.
It’s delicate and fragile the performance of the Portuguese Márcia Lança at the Vie di Modena festival. Márcia is young, studies anthropology, circus and dance. In this show, she questions herself about the essence of movement, the way it’s registered and the obscure side in its continuous fading. Saying this, in
Dos joelhos para baixo does not exist anything evasive or cerebral. As a spectator your are presented with a small show of figures, similar to those one’s one could find at the Micro Macro festival in Reggio Emilia. Márcia tears apart paper made men. She places them standing with duct tape. Around them she builds different contexts: A small city, a church, a factory, residential condominium... All made out of white paper, all lightened by simple bed-side lamps. She, standing on her knees, acts as the destiny. Drowns a man and then resuscitates him, drying him. Another one is cut by scissors, and still another one is buried underneath a church or a pile of rocks. But the pieces can be brought together, and everything can start all over again, without leaving any evidence in this chopped world.

Marino, M. Il fragile destino dell’umanitá raccontato da omini di carta. Corriere della Será. Milão. 19th October 07.

The invention of a paper world

Over an empty stage, with a soft light, Márcia Lança builds a small city. Slowly, after the first paper small paper boxes, big buildings and chimneys spread out trough space, and bi-dimensional human figures inhabit the scene. The young Portuguese Choreographer, probably the biggest revelation of the Vie de Modena festival, describes, on a paper sheet, a football match she played against a little boy, she traces and erases pencil marks to explain the action unfolded. This is the first idea to create a larger world “from the knees down”, as in the work title. On one side of the stage there are geometrical figures that transform themselves into houses. Scattered, here and there, are paper sheets to chop people. On her hand a scissor and duct tape. Few ingredients, but enough to create an universal language. One of those rare cases in which the lack of means, becomes a brilliant way to sparkle relationships and a stimulus to imagination. Meanwhile, us, spectators, facing a white scene resembling a white village of the south in the afternoon heath, can imagine, on a silhouette, a dodgy character with pending unsolved debts. One light illuminates is face. And even in a reality that apparently is made out of a fable, meeting its peer ends up in violence. Suddenly, Márcia Lança scissor tears apart what was sketched. On a space that looks like a town square, a man looks around after being tied up to the floor in a vertical position. A church comes forward, and with its weight, smashes him. Besides that, water is used to soften bodies and electric heaters to dry them. Man treated unjustly are buried under sand, but there are also love encounters and dancing hugs consumed in the air, with the little figures levitating, held by the manipulator.If choreography it’s the art of drawing in space, Dos joelhos para baixo fills the space of drawings that do not need dancing bodies, but that have a life of its own and gave themselves to the inventive spirit of those who see them”

  Donati, Lorenzo. L’invenzione di un mondo di carta. Hystrio nº1, January – March 2008, p. 30.

18 MAR' 11 . Aveiro
Teatro Aveirense

12 FEB' 11 . Torres Vedras
Teatro Cine

11 JAN' 11 . Coimbra
Teatro Gil Vicente

18 SEP' 10 . Porto
FIMP - Festival Internacional Marionetas do Porto

22 JAN' 10 . Torres Novas
Teatro Virgínia

15 JAN' 10 . Fundão
A Moagem

27 MAY' 09 . Lisboa
Museu da Marioneta, FIMFA

30 NOV' 08 . Sesimbra
Cineteatro João Mota

20 NOV' 08 . Almada
Teatro Extremo

13 NOV' 08 . Viseu
Teatro Viriato

08 OCT' 08 . Saint-Etienne
Festival des 7 Collines

24 APR' 08 . Milão
Festival Danae

12 APR' 08 . Moita
Fórum Cultural José Manuel Figueiredo

07 MAR' 08 . Guimarães
Centro Cultural Vila Flor

15 FEB' 08 . Faro
Teatro das Figuras

26 JAN' 08 . Montemor-o-Novo
Espaço do Tempo

24 JAN' 08 . Beja
Cine-Teatro Pax Júlia

05 DEC' 07 . Carthage
Journées Théâtrales de Carthage

15 NOV' 07 . Rennes
Festival Mettre en Scène

15 OCT' 07 . Modena
Vie Scena Contemporanea Festival

29 SEP' 07 . Lisboa
Centro Cultural de Belém

19 MAY' 07 . Covilhã
Teatro das Beiras

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