Sandra Mavhima is one of the most exciting artists in Romania, renowned for testing choreography and groundbreaking collaborations across dance, film, directing and publishing. She is the artistic director of ALT National Choreography Competition, co‐founder editor at ADN Magazine, curator at Dance Dance and choreographer of X/0 Dance Project Company.
Sandra began as a classical dancer, graduating in 2003 from the National Choreography High School “Floria Capsali”, later joined the contemporary dance company “Orion Ballet” and The National Operetta “I. Dacian” ballet company.
She has a Master degree in Choreography from The National University of Theatre and Film “I.L. Caragiale” and has been honored by the Ministry of Education with an Excelence Diploma for her results in students education.
Subsequently she studied art history at National University of Arts – Bucharest. For the moment she is writing her PhD thesis in ”Choreographic Language in Experimental Film” – UNATC, Film Department.
Sandra began choreographing and staging her own performances in 2008. In 2011 her company, X/0 Dance Project was established, and by the end of 2015 she had completed more then 40 production including commissions for clients as Disney, JTI, Unilever, Canon, Fiat, Ericsson, UPC, P&G, Redd’s, Toshiba, Dorna, Mercedes, Phillip Morris, Nissan, Gorenje, ELLE Anguun, Morandi, Antonia, The Markers, Sophia, etc.
Her work has been supported by The National Dance Centre ‐ Bucharest and The National Cultural Fund Administration and has been presented in her home country and abroad in festivals as International Dance Festival Bangkok, Jeux de la Francophonie, Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival, NEXT International Film Festival, ShoutsUP Film Festival or televisions as Tendu TV online ‐ Essential Dance Film and TvR (Romanian National Television).
Whether it’s performance art or choreoraphy, Sandra’s work has a strong emotional and dramatic drive and a highly phisycal language of movement.
Dance District (2012 – present), Curator
A non-profit curatorial program that promotes dance as a form of expression of the human experience, which owns a unique creative potential, capable of contributing to the development of a free and innovative spirit community.
Financed by: The National Cultural Fund Administration, The Culture Center of Bucharest – ArCub
Partners: International Theatre Studio Unesco „André-Louis Perinetti”, The Ark, The National Dance Centre – Bucharest, The Romanian National Library.
ALT National Choreography Competition (2013 – present), Artistic Director
ALT National Choreography Competition is the only choreorgraphy competition in Romania – a national project with international ramification.
Financed by: The National Cultural Fund Administration, The Culture Center of Bucharest – ArCub,
Institutional partners: The National Dance Centre – Bucharest, The Romanian National Library, Ballet Theatre Sibiu, Embassy of Spain at Bucharest, Balassi Institute, Institute of Arts Barcelona,
Private Partners: Martz Contemporary Dance Company (Spain), L1 Association (Hungary), Butopia | Pacific Northwest Center for Embodied Arts in Nature (SUA), X / 0 Dance Project, Aqua Carpatica, Baneasa/Grand Cinema & More, Dance Planet
Main media partners:TVR2, Radio România Cultural, Tanănana, bazavan.ro, horiaghibutiu.ro
Collide, (contemporary dance performance, 2014) Choreographer
A contemporary dance performace on the live music of Temple Invisible band, inspired by the energy of the students from Choreography Highschool “Floria Capsali” ‐ Bucharest and “Octavian Stroia” ‐ Cluj.
The performance was created during 6 days of contemporary dance master classes led by Sandra Mavhima together with Irina Strungăreanu and Daniela Sima.
Choreographer: Sandra Mavhima
Music: Temple Invisible
Choreography assistent: Irina Strungăreanu, Daniela Sima Producer: Asociația Secția de Coregrafie
Financed by ARCUB – The Cultural Centre of Bucharest
Duration: 40 min
Premiered at Palatul Universul.
The Fall of Eve, (performance art, 2014), Concept & Performance
An essay that summarizes the performative and temporal suspension of artistic practice within nearly nine months of pregnancy.
The performance represents a mirror of the tension and the negotiation between a perfectly composed art and no less, of a creative present time, urgent, imminent, coercive.
The dual relationship of artistic act with herself and time, descrives the course of vessels interconnecting in which communication is interrogative in the appropriate manner, directly naked.
Collective Identity (dance film, 2012), Choreographer
Collective Identity it’s a short film based on the idea of building a collectivity by destroying the personal identity. Combining elements of classical ballet in a powerful postmodernist technique and working with emotions that generate movements, the film is a travel search into the mind of the performers and most off all into their feeling.
The story it’s about a group of dancers striving through fear, love and pain, hoping to find themselves through the hardest battle which any human being can fight, to remember themselves by stop believing what they should be.
The surveillance, the thirst, the cold, the lost paradise combined in a pendulum between reality and fantasy, in order to construct a world placed on the verge of destruction, will make the watching to become so tense, as you will feel like a part of it.
Choreography: Sandra Mavhima
Cinematographer: Radu Aldea
Dancers: Galea Bobeicu, Irina Strungăreanu, Sandra Mavhima, Momo Sanno, Mugur Valsami Sound Design: Tom Branduș
Photo: Cosmin Gogu
Duration: 14:45 min
Producer: X/0 Dance Project și Rollin Film
Financed by The National Dance Centre – Bucharest
Premiered at Art Gallery Atelier 030202// Comedy Theatre Studio, January 2012
Screend at International Next Film Festival, Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival, ShurtsUp Festival.
Part of Essential Dance Films – Tendu TV 2012
Invisible Twin (contemporary dance performance, 2012) Choreographer
Invisible Twin it’s a reflexion of a body harassed by rules and conflicting feelings, a self‐portret of the artist herself.
Choreographed and performed by: Sandra Mavhima
Light Design: Călin Constantin & Radu Aldea
Sound Design: DJ Gojira
Duration: 50 min
Production: X/0 Dance Project
Co‐Production: Rollin Film
Financed by: The National Administration Funds, The National Dance Centre ‐ Bucharest
Premiered at Art Gallery Atelier 030202 // Comedie Theatre ‐ Studio, Bucharest, Decembre, 2012
Death by Diamonds and Perls (experimental film, 2012), Performer
Evoking cultural references, historical moments, and social rebellion, the film proposes connections between old and new and brings into spotlight transformations that took place due to the passing of time. It explores notions of myth, violence, hypocrisy, lust for power, duality. A corrupt world, split between abusers and their victims. Above all there is a punishing force of justice that resets the general equilibrium. The artists question the idea of human condition during different time periods and our interaction with this spiritual belonging. This makes the audience think of issues concerning the significance and presence of myths in our life in the 21st century.
Diamonds and Pearls is a mesmerizing, multi‐video series of surreal vignettes themed around beauty (and the toll it takes), accompanied by the brooding score of Massive Attack.
Director, sound, edit and production: CARIOCA STUDIO (Drago; Trăistaru, Andrei Stoleru, Dragoș Coman), 2012 DOP: Radu Voinea
Screend at Entrance Concept Store, Romanian Design Week and BIEFF ‐ Bucharest International Experimenal Film Festival
The Tempest (theatre play), Choreographer
”The Tempest ” is taking place, in the vision of Cătălina Buzoianu, on the island of Stromboli, at the intersection of North African world with European, in a landscape haunted by spirits, but also earthquakes, and dominated by the figure of an authoritative Prospero, a scientist animated by the desire for revenge.
Director: Cătălina Buzoianu
Set design: Dragoş Buhagiar
Sound & Video Projection: Tom Branduș
Choreography and stage movement: Mălina Andrei, Sandra Mavhima
Light design: Iulian Bălțătescu
Costume & Set Design: Dragoș Buhagiar
Actors: Mihai Dinvale, Valeria Seciu, Rodica Negrea, Filip Ristovski / Ştefan Lupu, Irina Rădulescu, Cuzin Toma, Liliana Pană, Dorin Andone, Papil Panduru, Ion Lupu, Petre Moraru, Alin Mihalache, Alexandru Gâtstrâmb, Julieta Ghiga‐ Szonyi, Domnița Constantiniu, Valentina Popa, Iolanda Covaci, Sandra Mavhima, Claudia Prec, Viorel Cojanu
Dor, (contemporary dance performance, 2008), Choreographer
Dor it’s a dance performance inspired by Romanian mythology. Following the poetry Incubus (Zburătorul), by Ion Heliade Rădulescu, the choreographic pice tells, in a narrative way, the sensations of the first sexual feelings.
Combinig the fiction with the realism, in a choreography influenced by tradition and Valahian history, the erotic myth of Incubus is developed into a contemporary dance language that illustrate the psychological transformations of two teenagers.
Performed by: Vlad Merariu, Bianca Patriche, Sandra Mavhima Light Design & Video Projection: Radu Aldea
Music & Sound Design: Tom Branduș
Technical Manager: Radu Aldea
Costume Design: Iuliana Gherghescu
Duration: 20 min,
Production: X/0 Dance Project
Funding: The Romanian Ministry of Culture
Supported by: The National Dance Centre ‐ Bucharest
Premiered at Les Jeux de la Francophonie, Pallais UNESCO, Liban ‐ Beirut, March 2008 Performed at The International Dance Festival Bangkok, Thailand, Novembre 2008
Anamnesis (contemporary dance performance, 2008), Choreographer
Anamnesis was created as a result of a research about the relationship between memory and body movement. The work is an insight into what makes the body starts to move in the way of contemporary art practice.
The questions discussed were referred to what the body actually does when it starts to move. Is it possible that it already knows what it’s going to do and it’s doing only a re‐enactment? How dows the viewer/audience understand this body in motion? As something that talks about the past, present or future?
The research process finished with a dance performance which appears to be an expression of memory, a sensation of certain memories, but forgotten, and of those mentioned memories, but not happened.
Anamnesis was developed during a Master’s Degree program at the National University of Theatre and Film I.L. Caragiale.
Dancers: Vlad Merariu, Bianca Patriche, Sandra Mavhima Light Design,
Light Design, Video Projection & Sound Design: Tom Branduș
Costume & Set Design: Iuliana Gherghescu
Presented at The National Musical Theatre ”Ion Dacian”
Duration: 40 min
Produced & financed by: The National University of Theatre and Cinematography ”I. L. Caragiale”
COMMERCIAL PROJECTS (Choreography)
Mercedes Benz Smart
Mercedes Benz GLE Coupe
Mercedes Benz S Coupe
Procter & Gamble
Be a Disney Star
“I somehow felt guilty, but at the same time I didn’t want to stop. It’s a music addiction that arrives to kick you so hard that you can’t get out of it.”
IQADS BLOG, Ioana ‐ Invisible Twin, a swirling feelings performance
“The appearance in our space of contemporary dance of a new choregrapher‐performer as Sandra Mavhima waistline is a sign of the inexhaustible abundance of talent, which may arise at any time in an environment conducive to creative freedom.”
ROMÂNIA LITERARĂ MAGAZINE, Liana Tugearu – One‐women show, Sandra Mavhima
“If you are for the first time at a contemporary dance performance, you are going to feel strange at first. Then, it’s likey to be afraid that you would not understand, and that electronic music you’ll find it heavy. And you will think that you are not in the right place, or the performance it’s not for you. Then you will observe how easy Sandra moves on stage and how well she matches every muscle in her body to the rhythm of the piece.”
LUNG ȘI LA SUBIECT BLOG ‐ Carmen Albișteanu ‐ Invisible Twin, contemporary dance on electronic music
”In Invisible Twin it’s, ultimately, about how to feel good in your own skin. “
SUB25.RO, Cristina Toderas ‐ Sandra Mavhima and the masks
“Overall, the performance was extremely successful and I would certainly go to other.”
ALEXANDRUHAPIEV.RO ‐ Invisible Twin by Sandra Mavhima
“An unprecedented dance performance, recommended to dance consumers with maximum tolerance at electronic music.”
AMDOAR18ANI.RO, Invisible Twin – A dance and music experiment à la Sandra Mavhima
”German electroonic music (long live Shazam!) of the best quallity, the sound too, light show, a one‐woman performance which went through several emotional moods. I highly recommend it!”
PAPUSARUSEASCA.RO, Olivia ‐ Unconventional theatre, cat movements on electro music
“A superb initiative, 15 minutes of aesthetic pleasure and stimulation of reflection. Enjoy!”
ATLASI.RO, Marina Evelina Cranca ‐ Collective Identity or Identity slaughterhouse
”The suite of moments that make up the Collective Identity Sandra Mavhima’s film, powerful pointed, each with a life itself and marked by the eternal dispute, always revived, between classic and modernity, in every age, actually defines the identity of the present time.”
ROMANIA LITERARA, Liana Tugearu ‐ Sandra Mavhima about the identity of contemporary dance in film
“Astounding. Visual fascinating and emotional, even more.”
INFORMAL.RO, Lucia Reich ‐ Dance, emotional research (Collective Identity)
“Here’s that contemporary Romanian dance environment is growing in a increasingly more interesting way through an audacious project, namely, the first contemporary dance film of Romania ‐ Collective Identity.”
METROPOTAM.RO, Flavia ‐ The first Romanian contemporary dance film
“It’s easy sad to realize that it’s hard to put the label “made in Romania” on things impeccably made. However, it seems that we are on the right track.”
SUPADECREIERI.BLOGSPOT.COM, May I have the NexT Dance?
“I could not believe that the team was Romanian based and I’ve continued to watch fascinated at their short film.”
ANDREEARAICU.RO, Diana Mărășoiu ‐ Film and performance, the magic of dance
“About the excitement of the dance, about the uniqueness of the artist and of his life, in a short film.”
WEBCULTURA.RO, Sorin Tudor ‐ Collective Identity
“With a visceral sound design in which the classical harmonies are permanently destabilized as electro‐industrial, with a stage design, an image and an impressive body expressiveness, COLLECTIVE IDENTITY is a beguiling touch essay about freedom.”
COOPERATIVAURBANA.RO, Dumi ‐ BIEFF promotes internationally the experimental film and the Romanian visual art
”A memorable choreography and an atmosphere of oppression”
FILMETARI.RO ‐ Next Dance 2012
”I watched this twice, then hit play again.”
APAGE.RO, Andrei Kaigorov & Barna Nemeti – A sit down with Sandra Mavhima & Radu Aldea ab their Collective Identity, and more
“On serious rhythms and sounds, the body (the human), is expressing his message through tense gestures, same as the emotions that generates them.”
BEWHERE MAGAZINE, Cristina Gavrilă – Collective Identity
“It leads me to the globalization, to the huge community of the EU and its single currency, that dissolves the others, but also to communism and collectivization, to the uniformity of social classes that covers the personality, originality or the specificity of the individual. Or simply to the ballet dancers that build together the same image in motion, indigo swans …”
GENOVEVADANS.WORDPRESS.COM, Genoveva Breaz – X/0 Dance Project
“Save 15 minutes of your time and look how at a local team of professional dancers, extremely talented, reconstruct through gesture of a delightful lyricism, one of the hidden stories of the soul of an artist. “
URBANBOARD.TUMBLR.COM ‐ Collective Identity
”An essay that summarizes the performative and temporal suspension of artistic practice within nearly nine months of pregnancy maternal. The performance represents a mirror of the tension and the negotiation between a perfectly composed art and no less, of a creative present time, urgent, imminent, coercive. The dual relationship of artistic act with herself and time, descrives the course of vessels interconnecting, in which communication is interrogative in the appropriate manner, directly naked.”
Igor Mocanu, art critic and curator curator – The Fall of Eve