Jurij Konjar

dancer, choreographer, improviser

Jurij Konjar

At an early age Jurij Konjar (1978, Ljubljana) trained judo and dancesport and took singing lessons. After receiving his first technical training in contemporary dance in Ljubljana, he decided to study at P.A.R.T.S. in Brussels. He later worked with and for Les Ballets C de la B (Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui Company), Robert Olivan, Boris Charmatz, Martin Kilvady, Maja Delak, Janez Janša and many others.

He has created many acclaimed performances, such as Catharsis for Beginners (2004, Dance Theatre Ljubljana), for which he received an Audience Award at Gibanica (Moving Cake) Biennial of Slovenian Contemporary Dance Art; Ulysses (2004, Exodos Institute), Goldberg Variations (2010), For Julian Mer-Khamis (2013), Still (2014) and more recently, collaborative improvised events Monday at Eight (2017) with dancer and choreographer Andreja Rauch Podrzavnik and improvised cycle Ventilator (2020, Sploh Institute) with Katja Legin. In 2021, he created the solo show B.O – Biodegradables (DUM Association of Artists).

In-depth observation of Steve Paxton’s Goldberg Variations video, with conversations that sprouted from it, triggered the development of his personal improvisation practice. Since 2010 Konjar has been collaborating closely and regularly with choreographer and dancer Steve Paxton in the reconstructions of his famous Goldberg Variations (2010), Bound (2013) and in the opera Quicksand (2016). In 2011 Contact Quarterly, co-edited by Lisa Nelson, published his observations and writings in a booklet titled Goldberg Observations.
From 2011 to 2013 Jurij taught and performed in Palestine. Between 2012 and 2014, he was resident artist at Modul Dance Network, in the frame of which he developed Still, a two-year project with partners from 7 European countries and a number of collaborators (Franck Beaubois, Catherine Jauniaux, Jaka Šimenc, Martin Kilvady and others), focused on exploring instant composition, scores and improvisation. Between 2015 and 2016 he performed Goldberg Variations and Still in the USA, Europe and Slovenia and taught improvisation workshops in Athens, Paris, Nantes, Strasbourg and Slovenia. In 2015 he received the Ksenija Hribar Award by Slovenian Contemporary Dance Association for his dance achievements.

In 2013 he organised and hosted the first Habitat, a shared working space in Barcelona, and continues to host them yearly at different international venues. He has also initiated The Walkaround (2018); Your Improv Evening (2018); CIRP – Contact Improvisation as a Research Paradygm (CDCN, Paris); Improvisational Summer School (2019, Nice, France); Go Score Lab practice (part of Tuning Scores by Lisa Nelson) etc, while being active in mixed ability education & art project Skok čez Luno / Dance ouf of Line (2019-2021). He performs and teaches at different international contact improvisation festivals (among others in Germany, Switzerland, France, Finland). He currently resides in Ljubljana.


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