Idan Cohen is a passionate Opera Director and Choreographer. He holds a BA in Choreography from the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance and an MA in Dance- Choreography. Idan was born and raised in Israel, Kibbutz Mizra. The socialist community of Kibbutz had a deep effect on his artistic life and work.
Idan was trained as a classical piano player and was awarded scholarship programs and grants for international master workshops from the age of 8. He went on to receive a scholarship to study theater and fine arts at the Art Colony in Israel’s Negev desert and graduated with honors. At the age of 20, he was admitted to a video-dance project by a Bat-Sheva Dance Company dancer, Lara Bersak. In 1998, he danced for 7 seasons with the world-renowned K.C.D.C (Founder Yehudit Arnon, Artistic Director Rami Beer).
Since 2005, he’s been creating, performing and teaching successfully as an international award-winning director & dance artist.
I Capuleti e i Montecchi is a brave new Dance-Opera production, based on the same Italian sources as Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
The overarching goal for this version is to speak of current happenings in today’s world and bring imagery of immigration, extreme urban conditions and the horrors of war within today’s human condition.
Through cultural and political references that create unsettling and provoking images, the Opera raises the question: Can the love between these young souls even stand the chance to cope, hold, and stand in front of the weight of the world?
In this Opera, the Capuleti and Montecchi are rival political factions, and not “two households, both alike in dignity,” as described by Shakespeare.
Typical to a Bel Canto Opera of that time, the part of Romeo is written for a mezzo soprano and the part of Juliet for a soprano. Thus, in this opera, both Romeo and Juliet are performed by women.
In creating I Capuleti e i Montecchi as a Dance Opera, award-winning Israeli director and choreographer Idan Cohen, presents the Italian opera as a highly contemporary, relevant and political production that puts the human body at the center of the drama.
Through Cohen’s vision and guidance, the opera singers will push their boundaries as the world of opera fuses with contemporary performance art.
Both singers and dancers will merge and expand their movement vocabulary and performance abilities, with a deep understanding of the music both in its context, history and performance possibilities.
Music: Vincenzo Bellini.
Libretto: Felice Romani
Director and Choreographer: Idan Cohen
Costumes and Set Design: Suzanne Palmer Dougan
Rehearsal Directors: Melannie Berson, Noa Shiloh
Idan Cohen returns to Amherst for Innovative Production – MA Jewish Ledger
Drawing upon punk and pop culture, choreographer Idan Cohen’s latest work incorporates images that reflect personal and social identities of masculinity, femininity and all that lies between. – Ori J. Lenkinski / Jerusalem Post, December 2013
The musical score, which comprises several of Mozart’s solo piano sonatas, might have tempted other choreographers to slavishly mimic its rhythm. But Cohen, a trained classical pianist, knew better. His movement was musical, but in surprising ways, with certain steps amplifying notes that might otherwise not have felt important. – Sarah Halzack / Washington Post, February 2013
Several years before Swan Lake was hurled back into the popular culture spotlight with the Oscar-winning film Black Swan, Israeli choreographer Idan Cohen delved into the monumental work to create his own, reinterpreting it for contemporary times. – Gili Malinski/Jerusalem Post, October 2011
This is an unmistakably 21st-century Swan Lake, but the connections to the popular 18th-century version run deep. – Deborah Friedes Galili/Dance in Israel, August 2009
Cohen’s 21st-century version emphasizes the story’s shades of gray by exploring the emotions and personal struggles that the characters face rather than focusing on the story itself. It was a raw, gritty, and sometimes violent exploration of the self, rooted in the trio of women’s relentless commitment to the movement. – Evan Namerow/The Brooklyn Rail, May 2010
This juxtaposition of old and new made Idan Cohen’s Swan Lake perfect for Williamsburg. This enclave of “hipsterdom” stylizes in the now, yet with a clear reverence and celebration of what has come before. Cohen’s Swan Lake was on the same page; his was not an adaptation or even a re-make of the classical Swan Lake. Instead, the important messages and lessons from the old were taken through a transformation into something new and applicable for today. – Heather Desaulniers/Dance Commentary, April 2010
Israeli choreographer Idan Cohen’s recent production of Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s classic ballet Swan Lake is a decidedly modernistic treatment, sleek and brief in comparison to typical versions, brash in its imagery and more abstract in the flow of the storyline. Despite its artistic distinction, and perhaps because of it, Cohen’s version of Swan Lake has enjoyed enormous success in Israel and Europe. – Smith College/Grecourt Gate News, February 2010