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From human bodies, the strengths and fragilities of our nature sound out. AToU amplifies the echoes of these sounds, and provides a space for each person to examine their own intimacy and rediscover the richness and possibilities that can be found in these vibrations,
Assisted by a hands-on team, Anan Atoyama stages a complex, instinctive and sensitive humanity, where beauty doesn't amount to simple flattery. This Japanese choreographer draws upon the traditions of her native land to access an energy that she reshapes with poetry and modernity, displaying her taste for different cultures from around the world and the intersection between different artistic mediums (music, architecture, digital art, etc.…).
In residence since 2012 in Vaulx-en-Velin, a generous and dynamic city that suits them well, the company has produced several pieceworks, including WelCOME in 2012, SHiNMu in 2013 and Mille Oasis in 2014.
Alongside their artistic research, AToU passionately and rigorously engages in multiple dance projects jointly with audiences who do not have easy access to the richness of dance. This richness often goes unrecognized, but for those who cultivate it, it reveals the inexhaustible fruitfulness of our primordial energy.
Nothing predisposed Anan Atoyama and Marc Ribault to meet. They come from diametrically opposed walks of life; their backgrounds differed in regards to geography, culture and even in terms of their paths as dancers and choreographers.
Anan Atoyama was born in Fukuoka, Japan. After a childhood and adolescence nourished by classical dance, she left the archipelago to study psychology in the United States. It was during these years that she discovered the richness of modern dance and, seized again by movement, she settled down in New York for three years. While there, she studied the approaches of Martha Graham, Trisha Brown and Merce Cunnighams and participated in various choreographic projects.
In 2004, Anan Atoyama worked for a production put on by the Klänge Theater in Germany before committing to two years as a choreographer and professor of dance in the Regional Conservatories of Music and Dance of Mahdia and Monastir (Tunisia). During these two years, she also taught at the ATAS school for the deaf and mute in Madhia. In 2007, back in her native country, she participated in the "Toyota Choreography Awards" as an interpreter. This same year, she presented her solo "Dai-chi" during the "Dance Hakushu" dance festival organized by Min Tanaka, the famous Buto dancer.
In 2008, the young choreographer moved to Lyon and began to work for AToU. Concurrently with her productions, Anan also puts on other international projects. In 2009, she created an experimental performance with artists and residents from Chiuda Dario, Nicaragua. In 2010, she was invited to Italy by “Manifatture Knos” as part of an artistic residence, as well as to Poland by the Lodz festival to lead a one-week workshop there.
In 2012, she collaborated with experimental musician Keiji Haino, serving as a live dancer at A Vaux Jazz Festival. The same year, she worked as a choreographer for the cities of Saint Foy-les-Lyon and Vaulx-en-Velin the Parade of the Dance Biennial of Lyon, while AToU was chosen to become the resident company at the Charlie Chaplin Cultural Center the same year.
From then on, Anan has divided her energy between her workshops aimed at Vaulx en Velin’s population, her collaborative projects with French and Japanese artists and her creations for AToU, including WelCOME in 2012, SHiNMu in 2013 and Mille Oasis in 2014.
Marc Ribault, born in France, discovered his calling to be a dancer at the age of 21. He had never taken a dance lesson, didn’t come from a family of dancers, and was occupied with studying history when he became acquainted with the art of movement. From then on, he never stopped dancing, dancing, and dancing some more. His feet landed on CND’s dance floor for his "first time." His intuitions were confirmed, and from that point on he did not let go of the warm-up bar. Two years after his first dance steps, he received a Fulbright grant to study in New York at the Alvin Ailey School. After two years of studying Graham and African techniques, he became associated with the Merce Cunningham School where he met Anan Atoyama.
Returning in France in 2005 after a short time with the Bill T. Jones company, Marc danced for several troupes, notably Michel Hallet Eghayan’s, and obtained his teaching diploma, delivering many courses. As he became more and more sensitive to the approach of AToU, he interpreted a role in Raga in 2011, and then joined Anan during the Biennial Parade’s 2012 rehearsals, together with dancers possessing mental and visual disabilities.