Jan Ritsema dances solo on live music performed by Takashi Yamane, Yutaka Oya, Geert Bièvre and George van Dam. The starting point was the quartet Quatuor pour la fin du temps by Olivier Messiaen. This quartet, written and first performed in the prison camp Stalag VIII-A in Görlitz, Silesia, 1940/1941, is an homage to the Apocalypse angel while he raises his hands on him, said: “From now on there is no time anymore. “(Revelation of John 10: 1-8).
But in a late stage of the pre-production the widow of Messiaen forbade the performance, as Messiaen had stated that this music could only be performed for a musical representation. Therefore Ritsema and the team of musicians chose alternative compositions, from Alban Berg, JS Bach, Anton Webern, Mahler and Charles Ives.
Jan Ritsema (born in the Netherlands in 1945) has directed for a wide variety of Dutch, and Belgian theatre companies like Toneelgroep Amsterdam, Het Werkteater, Het Nationale Toneel, Mug met de gouden Tand, ‘tBarre Land, Maatschappij Discordia, Het Kaaitheater and Dito Dito performances ranging from the established repertory (Marlowe, Mishima, Koltes, Shakespeare, Heiner Müller, Elfriede Jelinek, Rene Pollesch), through staged stories (James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, Henry James, Rainer Maria Rilke) to performances devised in collaboration with composers, dancers and artists. He founded the International Theatre Bookshop, in 1978, and published over 300 books about theatre dance and film. Since 1995, he has been working also as a dancer, with Xavier Le Roy, Jerome Bel, Boris Charmatz, Meg Stuart and others. He was from 1990 till 1995 professor at the Rijksacademie in Amsterdam. He has been a teacher at P.A.R.T.S., the contemporary dance school of Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, since its foundation in 1995. In 2006 Ritsema started PerformingArtsForum (PAF) in the north of France.