Ode To The Attempt / Sweat Baby Sweat

5.6.2014. / 19:30 / MSU

Ode To The Attempt

Jan Martens (BE)

Ode To The Attempt is a new solo that Martens created for himself. It is a featherlight and humorous deconstruction of the creative process. When creating an art work - whether it is a painting, a performance or whatever other medium - the artist goes through different stages. These stages become overwritten, because they are ‘inadequate’, it are layers that have become invisible in the final stage of the work.

Ode To The Attempt wants to give these stages that never saw daylight or would reach an audience a second life. Because maybe the imperfect has another quality, that can be as valuable as the final product.

In this new solo, Jan Martens thematizes again the imperfect, and this time not as an adjective (as in imperfect body) but as a state on itself, worth to be shared and to be seen.





Sweat Baby Sweat

Jan Martens / Frascati Producties (BE)


Sweat Baby Sweat is a new step into the investigation on the symbiosis of storytelling and abstraction, which started with the previous production a small guide on how to treat your lifetime companion.
Working together with a video designer and a composer, Sweat Baby Sweat becomes a work in which composed music and projected text take an important role next to the moving composition.

The departure point is again the most cliché theme ever: a relationship between a man and a woman. By adding love song lyrics and by moments even mellow music one would expect a very theatrical approach, but the contrary is true. 
The result is a one hour long performance in which a lifetime is passing.


Jan Martens (Belgium, 1984) studied at the Fontys dance academy in Tilburg and graduated at the Artesis Conservatory for Dance in Antwerp in 2006.
He performed in the work of amongst others: Koen De Preter, United-C, Mor Shani and Ann Van den Broek. In 2009 he started to develop his own choreographic work.

In a short time his work received critical and popular acclaim, which resulted in a growing number of shows performed mainly in the Netherlands and Belgium.

His first major work was i can ride a horse whilst juggling so marry me (United-C, 2010), a work which portrayed a generation of young women in a society dominated by social networks.
Since 2011 his work is produced by Frascati. There he created two ‘love duets’ in 2011, both investigating the cliché portrayal of a man – woman relationship: a small guide on how to treat your lifetime companion and sweat baby sweat. The first one is selected for Aerowaves, a European network supporting young choreographers. The work has been performed more than 40 times and is continuing to travel in and outside of Netherlands and Flanders next season, just like sweat baby sweat.

Next to these works he made guest choreographies for dansateliers, Meekers, and AHK. In March 2012 he created pretty perfect, a coproduction by dansateliers and Conny Janssen Danst. This work for six dancers will form the base for a new evening full work for next season. Also next season he will create together with director Peter Seynaeve a duet between a boy and a man that will come out in April 2013.

From 2013 onwards he will be artist in residence at ICK Amsterdam.

All Jan’s works explore the possibility of a perfect balance and symbiosis between storytelling and conceptualism. He is not trying to create a new movement language, but instead he molds and recycles existing idioms and places them in a different setting, so a new idea emerges. In his work the beauty of the incomplete human being stands up front, rather than to excel in choreographic complexity or physical virtuosity.