Shechter, Hofesh

Hofesh Shechter, OBE, is an Israeli choreographer, dancer and composer active in London, UK, since 2002. In 2008, he formed the Hofesh Shechter Dance Company and is now regarded as one of the foremost theatremakers active in the UK. He trained as a dancer in Israel with the Bathsheva Dance Company, while still conscripted to the Israeli army, an experience that he has descfribed as formative. After studying music in Paris, he moved to London in 2002 to work with the Jasmin Vardimon Company. After his debut as a choreographer, Fragments, in 2003, further major producutions included Cult (2004) that won the Audience Choice Award at the Place Prize, and Uprising in 2006. In Your Rooms, which he expanded in 2007 to work for the three venues The Place, the Southbank Centre, and Sadler’s Wells, won the Critics Circle Award at the South Bank Show Award for Best Modern Choreographer. Major productions trhat followed include The Art of Not Looking Back in 2009, Political Mother (2010), Political Mother: The Choreographer’s Cut (2011), Sun (2013), and barbarians (2015). While Shechter was an Associate Artist at Sadler’s Wells, the Hofesh Shechter Company conceived the touring show Grand Finale in 2017, which was nominated for an Olivier Award (2018) and Helpmann Award (2019) for Best Dance Production and won a Dora Award for Outstanding Touring Production (2019). His work has also been presentd globally, by companies such as the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the Royal Ballet, Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater and the Paris Opera Ballet, and Gauthier Dance at the Theaterhaus Stuttgart. In 2018, BBC Two showed the Company’s award-winning dance film, Hofesh Shechter’s Clowns as part of the Performance Live umbrella.

His style as a dancer and choreographer has been described as raw, energetic, even animalistic, suggesting a controlled chaos. The roles of percussive, rhythmic music and visceral, cinematic mise-en-scène have also been noted.