Le Maillot – One Size Fits All
In this project, a group of performers with diverse artistic practices – ranging from dance, photography, fashion, video, athletics, and all sharing football as a common passion – come together to explore the football jersey and its infinite cultural and physical significance. Departing from the simple action of shirt pulling, common in football as a method of maintaining contact with an opponent, not letting an opponent get away, and typically seen as an aggressive act, they attempt to push this action to its limits, debunking its aggressive, competitive quality to arrive at something new.
In doing so the jerseys begin to take on a new significance. The histories and cultural implications of every piece of material transcend the initial association of simply being a football jersey. They are countries, they are clubs, they are cities, villages, sponsors, oil companies, memories and fashion; the performers, their models and providers of haute couture. But who is able to provide haute couture?
This production started through a meeting between Ahilan Ratnamohan, Sergio Belo Fanck, Alimu Mahammad, Lia Conceiçao and Issouf Ilboudo. While they came together to explore football movements, the thing which stood out most was a shared interest in fashion or design from completely different perspectives. Afterwards and due to the life trajectories of each one, the group of performers evolved and this production is built now around the practices of Ahilan Ratnamohan, Boubacar Barry, Issouf Ilboudo, Lia Conceiçao, Lisa Maes, Lucie Anakete, Mahy Nambiar and Oumar Diallo.
Artist and director: Ahilan Ratnamohan
Assistant: Mahy Nambiar
Athletes and Performers: Ahilan Ratnamohan, Boubacar Barry, Issouf Ilboudo, Lia Conceiçao, Lisa Maes, Lucie Anakete, Mahy Nambiar en Oumar Diallo.
Dramaturgie: Petar Sarjanović
Costume-Dramaturgie: Anne-Catherine Kunz
With the support of: Kangouroe-BXL
FR 26 NOVEMBER 2021/VR 26 NOVEMBER 2021
- Ahilan Ratnamohan
Ahilan Ratnamohan is a performance-maker working with non-classically trained performers to create cross-disciplinary pieces. He is inspired above all by sport and language-learning processes. In his early twenties Ahil attempted to make a career as a professional footballer spending time in the Netherlands, Germany and Sweden. He began concentrating on contemporary performance in 2007, collaborating with a range of companies in Sydney, most extensively with Urban Theatre Projects, Branch Nebula and Martin del Amo.
Since 2012 he has been based in Antwerp, where he began to lead his own projects. His work is disparate and straddles many different themes and aesthetics. In the last 10 years his work has developed into three trajectories; the choreographic investigation of football; language learning as performance and; his collaboration with the Star Boy Collective, the performance troupe which grew organically out of his first production, Michael Essien I want to play as you... Since 2020 Ahilan is a member of the collectively, autonomous production house Robin vzw.
- Barry Boubacar
Barry Boubacar is a basketball player. When he was asked to join this dance project that explores the movements of football, he did not hesitate to join ‘Le Maillot – One Size Fits All’, driven by a passion for sport in all its forms.
- Issouf Ilboudo
Issouf Ilboudo is part of the Globe Aroma community as an artist and it was only natural that he joined the project and met Ahilan Ratnamohan. He immediately found it interesting to mix football and dance. For him, football and dance are almost similar, but what motivates him most is the creativity: “I live the creativity”.
- Lucie Anakete
When Lucie Anakete was asked to be part of the ‘Le Maillot – One Size Fits All’ project, she wondered what it was all about, but her passion for football convinced her to take an interest in the project and to come to a rehearsal. Lucie wants to find out what is behind football and what can be created without a ball.
- Oumar Diallo
Oumar Diallo is an artist and dancer. He is interested in movement practices and creation. Oumar recently participated in a ‘clapping’ project also inspired by football. He joined the project ‘Le Maillot – One Size Fits All’ in order to discover another technical approach to dance and to feed his personal practice.
- Mahy Nambiar
Mahy Nambiar is a Futsal player and played in London with Kent United. He played one season in the top division. He sees Futsal as a passion, which he loves to do. Now based in Brussels for work, he wants to continue playing.
- Lisa Maes
Lisa Maes started playing football at the age of 10 in a mixed team. At the age of 15, she joined a women’s team as she could no longer play in the mixed team. Two years ago, Lisa stopped playing football as she could not combine it with her film/documentary studies. The co-creation project ‘Le Maillot – One Size Fits All’, allowed her to regain the feeling and energy of the sport. However, the performance compared to her years of practice is very physical and explores the upper body. She sees her participation in the project as essential for gender balance. She now wants to play again but less intensively as football is stress-free and provides an opportunity to be outside and see friends.