“The prospect of seeing a modern dance company from Portugal is like opening a gift from a distant relative। What will it contain? Portugal lies outside the mainstream of European culture। Other than Great Britain, which shares a strong kinship with the U।S., Germany and France are the most visible exponents of modern dance form. Merce Cunningham has been the basis for much of French modern dance; the Germans have their own expressionist heritage. Spain and Belgium have been drawing notice. But Portugal is largely unknown.“ – said dance critic Larry Campbell in one of his reviews. Nevertheless, the Company Paulo Ribeiro (Companhia Paolo Ribeiro) is well-known outside Portugal. During its fifteen years’ activity, it has conquered an important position among the most recognized Portuguese companies of contemporary dance, having a regular presence in the main national stages, as well as through all Europe, Brazil and United Sates. The story of Companhia Paolo Ribeiro started in 1995, when, after having worked with some of the most prestigious European dance companies, a Portuguese choreographer Paolo Ribeiro established his own dance company. Prior to consolidating his career as a choreographer, Lisbon-born Paulo Ribeiro enjoyed a successful career as a professional dancer with various French and Belgian companies. His first experience as a professional choreographer was in Paris in 1984, with Stridanse, a company he co-founded. He later took part in various competitions in the French capital, and in 1984 was received the Humour Award, whilst in 1995 he was the runner up in the Contemporary Dance category of the international choreography competition 'Prix Volinine'. After his return to Portugal, in 1988, he started collaborating with the Lisbon Dance Company and with Ballet Gulbenkian. With the solo Modo de utilização, interpreted by him, he comes to represent Portugal in the Europália 91 Festival, in Brussels. From 1991 his career as a choreographer acquired an international scope, with the creation of works for renowned companies, such as Nederlands Dans Theater II or Centre Chorégraphique de Nevers. Working with his own company allowed P.Ribeiro to develop more effectively his personal language as a choreographer. One of the main scores of the creator has always been the making dance into an art that appeals to everyone, irrespective of each individual’s particular tastes. By now, the company has already created twenty eight productions, which interested the public as well as the critics. With the global audience of about 80.000 people, Companhia Paolo Ribeiro received some of the most important national and foreign awards: “Circulação Nacional”, “Prix d’Auteur”, “New Coreography Award”, “Prix d’Interpretation Collective”. One of the most recent awards of the company is the PRIZE SPA, attributed in 2010 for the best choreography of the performance called “Landscapes - where black is color”. The excerpts of the performance could be seen by clicking this link:

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