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1000 WORDS: MICHAEL CLARK

During the premiere of his new show at the Hebbel Theater in Berlin this August, choreographer Michael Clark himself appeared only briefly, wielding a janitor's broom to sweep his company of dancers offstage. This came as something of a surprise since Clark’s personal charisma as a performer has always underpinned his status as one of contemporary dance’s true stars. He looks like a hybrid of Charlie Chaplin and Lauren Bacall with the physique and control of an Olympic gymnast. After training in traditional Scottish dance and ballet, Clark achieved instant celebrity on the launch of his own company in 1984 for bringing to the etiolated world of dance the energy and attitude of the postpunk club scene. Favoring as musical foil the harsh, discordant sound and bitterly humorous lyrics of the Manchester-based band The Fall, Clark's dance was full of joy and insouciance, grace and cheek, surging

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