Voguing with Beethoven
Short film by Emilie Norenberg
About the film
The film is about substituting isolation and rejection with freedom and acceptance, and the importance of acknowledging that you are exactly the way you should be.
In honour of Beethoven's 250th birthday, the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra has invited film director Emilie Norenberg to direct a short film in which the legacy of Beethoven is actualised through modern ways of expression.
Beethoven is often described as an outsider – a man that did not belong to traditional conceptions about how one should think and behave. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, he became one of the greatest classical composers in history. As a humanist, Beethoven was strongly devoted to equality and the right to freedom. These values are the fundament for Norenberg’s visual interpretation in which she has collaborated with voguers from the ballroom community in Oslo.
Voguing is a dance style that originated in New York throughout the 70s and 80s, particularly popular in the city’s Hispanic and LHBTQ communities. The dance emphasizes self-realization, pride and self-confidence. It is all about being yourself – or possibly someone completely different.
“I have always admired the ballroom culture and its way of channelling individuality and using vulnerability as a strength. The dance teaches you to embrace your true self and to showcase the aspects that make you unique. Its expression and message are in many ways equivalent to the values that preoccupied Beethoven’s life, namely equality and freedom. Our film is about substituting isolation and rejection with freedom and acceptance, and the importance of acknowledging that you are exactly the way you should be,” explains Norenberg about the film.