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Watch Akram Khan and Israel Galván combine kathak and flamenco to forge a new dance style.

In 2014 The Space partnered with Sadler's Wells to co-produce a web documentary following Akram Khan and Israel Galván as they developed a new work. In Torobaka, they brought together their two worlds and disparate dance styles - kathak and flamenco.

Directed by Maxime Dos, the film followed the artists' collaboration in London, Barcelona and Grenoble. It combines conversations, rehearsal footage, excerpts from the performance and backstage moments, giving viewers an insight into Akram and Israel’s perspectives as they created a duel/duet in which their different cultures met and confronted one another.

Khan and Galván presented Torobaka for the first time in the UK at Sadler’s Wells in 2014, and the production toured around the world in 2015. The show took its name from a Maori-inspired phonetic poem by Tristan Tzara. The bull (toro) and the cow (vaca) are sacred animals in the dancers’ two traditions, and represent the coming together of dance styles. Rather than mimicking one another, Akram and Israel set out to create something new by better understanding each other’s approaches to their craft.

All photos © Jean Louis Fernandez.

Watch the documentary

About this Artist

The Torobaka web documentary was co-produced by Sadler's Wells and The Space.

Akram Khan is one of the most celebrated and respected dance artists working today. In just over a decade he has created an imaginative and relevant body of work, including productions such as DESH, Vertical Road, Gnosis and zero degrees, as well as the choreography for the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Israel Galván is a multi award-winning artist known for his innovative choreography and exquisite dancing technique, and has been at the forefront of contemporary flamenco for 20 years.

Maxime Dos is a French video artist and film-maker who directed the Torobaka web documentary. He has a MA in Audiovisual Communications from Avignon and has been working with the Akram Khan Company since 2012.

Project Partners

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