CocoonDance /Rafaële Giovanola
Rafaële Giovanola is a swiss choreographer and director, born in Baltimore, USA.
She studied at Marika Besobrasova in Monte Carlo. Following her first engagement as a soloist in Turin. After one season in Turin, Rafaële Giovanola was engaged by Egon Madsen for the Frankfurt Ballet. There, she danced the classical repertoire and co-operated with several modern choreographers like Jiri Kylian, Uwe Scholz and William Forsythe, the Frankfurt Ballet choreographer. Under his direction she stayed with the Frankfurt Ballet for eight years, being involved in all important productions. During her engagement in Frankfurt she met the guest-choreographers Daniel Larrieu, Stephen Petronio and Christoph Nel. Since 1990, when the Choreographic Theatre was founded, Rafaële Giovanola is a member of Pavel Mikulátik’s company. In 1995 Rafaële Giovanola was mentioned in the annual poll of critics of „ballett international/tanz aktuell“ in the category „exceptional dancing personalities“.
In March 2000 she grounded, together with Rainald Endraß the performative collective CocoonDance. An important mainstay is the Swiss canton of Valais, where the company has been co-produced since 2005 and has produced eight premieres to date. Since 2020 CocoonDance Artiste associé is at the Théâtre du Crochetan in Monthey. Since 2000, the company has produced about forty full-length productions which have toured five continents and been invited to showcase festivals in Germany and Switzerland.
The engine behind the 20 years of artistic development is improvisation, a strong dramaturgic approach and high emphasis on incessant teamwork. For years, CocoonDance has been consistently experimenting with new narrative techniques, artistic methods for contemporary dance. Their practice focuses on perception as a starting point for change in modern dance.
With their pieces CocoonDance breaks the conventional stage experience not only in terms of space, but also plays in a sophisticated way with our perception.