Sat 05.06.2010    09:00

Inside words >> Saturday, June 5th, 20h00, Round Hall

Last Winter was the rainiest in the history of Portugal and the most devastating one in my life. It was as if pain was sinking me and I had to force my way to the bottom. I would collect more pain, so that it would finish its work of dissolving me into nothingness. I lost 6kg plus half of my reality, half of my love, half of my work, half of my trust and half of myself. With the half of me that was left I had to re-make the Rui that would come out of it (if there should be any Rui coming out). I had to re-model Rui with the remains of the past one I left for good in Bucureşti.
In February, during the residence I did in Atelier Real (Lisboa), it was cold indoors and most of the time it was raining inside the building where I was working and eating (only the kitchen and my bedroom were safe from the flood). There was no comfort, but I got aware of a warm wave of gentleness and tenderness enveloping me, as if everybody around me was conspiring to rescue me from myself.
From Nuno Cabral, my incredibly wise Yoga teacher, to São, that rented me half of her labyrinthical house (somewhere in-between the suburbs, the country and the Atlantic), to my parents, to my old friends and those recently-made, ex-colleagues and the staff in Real-João Fiadeiro company office, each one of them was ‘giving a penny’ for me to pull myself together. I was collecting all these little fragments of sensibility and finally the light, the magical light, the multicoloured winter light of Portugal, started glueing me bit by bit.
Then Mihaela came, with the recordings from Bucureşti. I asked her to interview people that had seen the “Rui” improvisation series I did in Miercurea Lejeră, during 2008-09, and then we both saw the recollections of Carmen Coţofană, Florin Flueraş, Edi Gabia, Iuliana Stoianescu, Paul Dunca…
Like an intricated riddle, since then it became apparent what I was doing in Romania: building a myth, might it be of myself or for myself, and trying to recapture a youth, an artistical youth I never allowed myself to live, while a youngster. But watching those incredibly charming faces, and remembering all the others I met while living and working in Bucuresti, I understood, and accepted, the tale of fascination and illusion I had told to myself.
The day after Mihaela left, I went back to the studio and for one hour I cried in the same place I was interviewing her the day before. It was raining again, and again the water was dripping from the ceiling, creating pools of water in the areas left without buckets and tupperware boxes. Newspaper papers, wide sheets of paper, books where spread all over, remains, remains, remains and no life but my own empty cage.
My first solo is an attempt to bring to light (and hopefully to a colourfull light) all the things I tried to hide while living in Romania. Rui’s body is still the same, though a little older (I’m almost 39 now). Rui’s way of dealing with memory might be the same also. But the Rui that will show up inside words is a fiction. That Rui doesn’t exist, except onstage.

Rui Catalão


A former journalist and critic, Rui Catalão (b.1971, Portugal) worked with the choreographers João Fiadeiro, Miguel Pereira, Manuel Pelmus, Brynjar Bandlien, Madalina Dan, wrote scripts for the film directors João Pedro Rodrigues (To Die Like a Man) and Jorge Cramez (The Golden Helmet) and took part in Miguel Gomes movie "The face you deserve", as an actor. In 2003, he created the ‘live movie’ set concept, with which he made four pieces (the later one, “Atat de Frageda”, premiered in CNDB with romanian interprets). Established in Bucuresti during 2007-2009, he performed “Coada Soricelului” together with Mihaela Dancs, with whom he conceived “Follow that summer”, collaborating also in "First Steps" (Dancs / Carmen Cotofana). Back in Portugal he did "Untitled - still life", with Ana Borralho-Joao Galante and finished his first solo, "Inside words", developed from material tested and presented in “Miercurea Lejera”, the program that Edi Gabia and Maria Baroncea hold in CNDB.