Aimai-je un rêve Jeroen Verbruggen Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo
Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB
Aimai-je un rêve Jeroen Verbruggen Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo
Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB
Aimai-je un rêve Jeroen Verbruggen Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo
Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB
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Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB
Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB
Alexis Oliveira & Benjamin Stone ©AB

Aimai-je un rêve ?

Jeroen Verbruggen

Jeroen Verbruggen purposefully gave his piece a different title from the countless other tributes to Afternoon of a Faun. The choreographer chose one of the first lines from Mallarmé's famous poem, Aimai-je un rêve ? in order to highlight the introspective aspect of this ballet alongside the bestiality it is generally associated with.

This version of 'Faun' strays from the lines of thought present in the original, although the core theme remains that of eroticism. Where the Ballets Russes' iconic ballet dealt with the unapologetic lust inherent to this hybrid creature, Jeroen Verbruggen examines questions and doubts related to sexual identity. What is our sexual identity? What does our body truly desire, and what unknown experiences does it yearn for? This fresh take on the concept of a single gender led the choreographer to remove the nymphs, a feature of the original that provided too obvious an answer. In working on this production, Jeroen Verbruggen created roles that could be played by girls and boys interchangeably. Aimai-je un rêve ? is an intimate duet in which a faun and a person meet.

The ballet retains similarities with the original Faun, notably in the costumes designed in collaboration with stylist Charlie Le Mindu. White silicone markings are stuck to the mythological creature's skin in a nod to Léon Bakst's costume. These sheer markings are barely visible against the faun's skin, rendering the creature's identity ambiguous and uncertain. Like a waking dream, nothing in this ballet is truly tangible, with the set design creating an atmosphere of foggy reality, a misty platform for the choreographer's questioning: "Who is this faun, and what does it want with me...".


Choregraphy: Jeroen Verbruggen
Music: Claude Debussy
Costumes: Charlie Le Mindu
Lighting: Fabiana Piccioli
Duration: 12 min

With the participation of the Monte-Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Kazuki Yamada

Creation for Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo
Premiere on December 8th 2018, Salle Garnier Opéra de Monte-Carlo