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Citrancs, 2004.

Gábor Pete

   My short dance cv: I was born in Szeged, Hungary, in 1976. Besides dancing, I am a mathematician (researcher and professor). After some childhood experience in folk dance and karate I began dance in August 1999, at an intensive workshop by Katalin Balla, which experience immediately led me to start doing contemporary dance and improvisation seriously. Since then, I am learning through workshops and performances; working with Katalin and her students, and with David Zambrano have been the most influential. I also worked a lot with Gyula Berger and Ákos Hargitay (L1 danceLab), and the workshops of Hanna Barbara, Karl Frost, Julyen Hamilton, Ferenc Kálmán, Daniel Lepkoff, Steve Paxton, Sten Rudstrom, and Min Tanaka were extremely inspiring and helpful.

   I feel improvisation to be the best technique to widen and deepen my body language and my perception and thinking about life and theater. In theater I like to watch and show and share the ways of creating structures, the decisions that lead to one chosen possibility out of many.

   Click here for an explanation (sorry, not yet) about improvisation and mathematics: What is the connection, and why are they so important (at least to me)? Here is a site-specific improvisation research series I tried to run in Berkeley: Improvised place & improvised time. And here is my sister's (Nóra Pete) Függőkert (Hanging Garden) dance project in Budapest, and a photo where my wife Katalin Pálinkás is dancing. Below is the detailed history of my dance activity, with some photos from performances.

Budapest, Western Railway Station, 1999.
Participation in performances:

October 16-17, 1999, Western Railway Station, Budapest: Szeged Express: Nine, seven. Site-specific performance in the spaces of the railway station and on the train leaving for Szeged. Part of the series of performances organized by the Workshop Foundation to popularize dance. T.u.v.(g.)produkció, choreography and direction by Katalin Balla.

May 23, 2000, Brno: Fruit Castle, at the International Festival 'Pod Sklem' of Contemporary Dance. T.u.v.(g.)produkció and Group Hétfo, choreography and direction by Katalin Balla, based on work with the dancers.

Aug. 3, 2000, Pepsi Island Festival, Cökxpôn Ambient Garden, Budapest: Crab soup, Gyula Berger and Friends Dance Company, choreography and direction by Gyula Berger. Four movements, improvisation by Gyula Berger, Celesta Haraszti, Zizi Mészáros, Gábor Pete; music by Burton Beerman.

Aug. 8, 2000, Pepsi Island Festival, Cökxpôn Ambient Garden, and Dance- and Theatre Tent, Budapest: Matrix project No1 and No2, Cie 2in1 Ákos &Mimi and their Guests (Zsófi Fóti, Eszter Gál, Ákos Hargitay, Ferenc Kálmán, Michaela Pein, Gábor Pete, Vicky Shick), structured improvisations.

Two days in Venice, 2001.

November 3, 2000, Theatre Szkéné, Budapest: At once - but dance! Improvisation by Eszter Gál, Ákos Hargitay, Michaela Pein, Gábor Pete.

November 11, 2000, Cökxpôn Ambient Festival, Trafó (House of Contemporary Art), Budapest: Cellar dream. Gyula Berger and Friends Dance Company, choreography by the company, direction by Gyula Berger.

November 24, 2000, Banán Klub, Budapest; March 17, 2001, Hajdúböszörmény; June 6-7, 2001, Theatre Bárka, Budapest: Two days in Venice. T.u.v.(g.)produkció, choreography by Katalin Balla and the dancers (Gábor Pete and Gyöngyi Vad), direction by Katalin Balla.

December 3, 2000, "Impulzus 2000" Conference on Dance Therapies, Budapest: Improvisation by Group Hétfo.

March 11, 2001, Theatre MU, Budapest: Little Rose. Gyula Berger and his Friends Dance Company, choreography by the company, direction by Gyula Berger.

February 10, 2002, International House at UC Berkeley: Circles. Solo improvisation.
Circles, Berkeley, 2002

April 13, 2002, International House at UC Berkeley, A fruit with nails. Solo improvisation.

July 25, Aug 8, Aug 22, 2003, Danswerkplaats Amsterdam: Informal showings of the Rabbit Project, by David Zambrano and 18 dancers from 12 countries, and Jennifer Monson as a guest.

January 16, 2004, 5th Solo Festival, Theater MU, Budapest: Citrancs (A name for a grapefruit). Structured solo improvisation. Photos at

July 20 and 24, 2004, Verbier Academy and Festival, FestOFF:  Teleportation. Site-specific perfomance with 5 dancers and 2 musicians in TeleVerbier ski-lift terminal.

January 13, 2005, Theater MU, Budapest, and May 3, 2005. Trafó, Budapest, 4th Duo Festival: Testvér és hézag (Brother and sister and gap). Duett with my sister Nóra Pete. Thanks to Katalin Balla. Lights by Károly Mahr. Prize from the audience. Photos at

Continuous training and research:

1999 - 2001: Katalin Balla, Improvisation, contact improvisation, composition, weekly classes at Trafó (House of Contemporary Art), Budapest

1999 - 2000: Ferenc Kálmán, Improvisation and Body Mind Centering, weekly classes at Trafó

1999 - 2001: Gyula Berger, Creative modern dance, weekly classes at Trafó

Winter 1999/2000: Ákos Hargitay, performance-independent regular work

2000 - 2001: Gyula Berger, performance-independent regular work

Spring 2001: Weekly Improvisation Workshop with dancers and musicians.

2001 - 2002: Regular classes in Modern dance, Music resources for dancers, and Capoeira at the University of California, Berkeley

2001 - 2002: Monthly Master Class series in contemporary dance of Axis Dance Company, Oakland, CA

Fall 2002: Off the ground dances - aerial dance workshop, Jo Kreiter, San Francisco, CA

Summer 2003: The Rabbit Project - A six-week research project with David Zambrano and 18 dancers from 12 countries, with guest teachers Jennifer Monson (improvisation) and Tom Koch (Alexander technique)

Rabbit Project, 2003
Fall 2003: Aikido classes at Indiana University, Bloomington, IN

2003 - 2004: Contact improvisation jams in Seattle, WA, and Berkeley and San Francisco, CA. E.g., the Valencia Jam by Ali Woolwich.

Spring 2004: Mia Rovegno, Viewpoints, San Francisco, CA
Warm-up, Impulzus 2000.

One- and two-week workshops:

Aug 1999: Katalin Balla, Improvisation and composition
Oct 1999: Vertigo, Contemporary technique
Nov 2000: Vicky Shick, Composition
Jan 2000: Ákos Hargitay, Deep hop
March 2000: Katalin Balla, Foot-head - improvisation
May 2000: Éva Gálik, Limón
June 2000: Martin Keogh, Contact improvisation
Aug 2000 Tanzwochen 2000, Vienna:
         David Zambrano, Improvisation for performers, Flying low
         Frey Faust, Axis syllabus
Nov 2000:  Ferenc Kálmán, Body Mind Centering
Dec 2000 : Julyen Hamilton, Improvisation in performance
Jan 2001: Daniel Lepkoff, Improvisation
Feb 2001: Hanna Barbara, Plug in for excitement - improvisation and composition - workshop and audition
May 2001: Frey Faust, Axis syllabus
June 2001: Katalin Balla, Elements - improvisation
Dec 2001: Márta Ladjánszki, Contemporary technique
Jan 2002: Daniel Lepkoff and Oleg Soulimenko, ImprovisationBrother and sister and gap, 2005
Jan 2002, Amsterdam: Julyen Hamilton, Improvisation
June 2002: Ákos Hargitay, Free fall - contemporary technique
June 2002, Palic, Serbia: Min Tanaka, Body Weather (butoh)
July 2002, Lázárfalva, Transylvania: Katalin Balla, "Contact" improvisation
Aug 2002, Tanzwochen 2002, Vienna: David Zambrano, A dance web - a Pro Series project
Jan 2003: Katalin Balla, Voice and improvisation; Contact improvisation
Jan 2003: La Compagnie du Solitaire, Improvisation
Jan 2003: Attila Csabai, The Xabay method
June 2003: Katalin Balla, Improvisation
Sept 2003: Katalin Balla, Improvisation with classical music
Feb 2004, Berkeley: Karl Frost, Contact improvisation
March 2004, San Francisco: Sten Rudstrom, Wild in tandem
July 2004, Verbier, Switzerland: Steve Paxton, Material for the spine
Aug 2004: Katalin Balla, Sounding space - improvisation for musicians and dancers
June 2005: Katalin Balla, choreography
Aug 2005: Katalin Balla, Roasted duck  - choreography
Oct 2005, Berkeley: Karl Frost, Being there

(Workshops without named location took place in Budapest.)

I am grateful to these two beautiful studios in Budapest for giving me rehearsal space: the MMS Mozdulatművészeti Stúdió (Studio for the Art of Movement) and L1 danceLab.
Mozdulatmuveszeti Studio L1