Um Corpo que Dança

By Marco Martins

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Marco Martins’ documentary is a proposed history of the body based on the history of one of the greatest Portuguese dance companies of the 20th century, as it examines how dance developed in Portugal hand in hand with the country’s political, economic and sociocultural history.  

Um Corpo que Dança [A Body that Dances], Ballet Gulbenkian 1965-2005 is the story of the experience of a new body in transformation, freeing itself from fascism, and of a changing society opening up to the outside world. Via unseen archival images and interviews with various creators and dancers, we accompany the history of Ballet Gulbenkian, through the movements and words of its protagonists, from its creation in the early 1960s to its extinction in 2005.

Included in the dance not dance programme, this screening takes place on the same day as the presentation of Ritmo/Violento [Rhythm/Violent], a performance by André Cabral with the Portuguese Higher School of Dance (ESD), based on Ritmo Violento, created by Norman Dixon and performed by the Experimental Ballet Group in 1961.

Marco Martins (1972, Lisbon) is a director and stage manager who, in 2005, won the Prix Regard Jeune at the Directors' Fortnight at the Cannes Film Festival for his film Alice. Also noteworthy is the video installation Twenty-One-Twelve – The Day the World Didn’t End, co-curated with Michelangelo Pistolletto and exhibited at the Louvre Museum. He also founded the Arena Ensemble theatre company with Beatriz Batarda in 2007.

dance not dance

This event is included in the (re)performances, films and talks series which constitutes the first part of dance not dance – archaeologies of the new dance in Portugal. More info.



Marco Martins

Assistant director

Rita Quelhas

Image research and assistance

Lígia Resende

Photography research

Sara Coelho


Rita Quelhas and Catarina Lino

Sound design and mixing

Miguel Martins

Color correction

Mário Gaspar

Original score

Filipe Raposo


Marco Martins


Paulo Sabino


Marta Martins

Project coordinator

Patrícia Faria


Filipa Reis


With the collaboration of Ana Bigotte Vieira, João dos Santos Martins, Luiz Antunes and Maria José Fazenda

An initiative of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.

A film by Marco Martins produced by Vende-se Filmes with the co-production of RTP.

The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation reserves the right to collect and keep records of images, sounds and voice for the diffusion and preservation of the memory of its cultural and artistic activity. For further information, please contact us through the Information Request form.


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