heart drive

Through multiple stages, Heart Drive invites you to reflect, unburden and accept instincts and impulses. Where the physical experience of the body and sensations can exist without boundaries, and the acknowledgement of our nature is present. By exploring the primal drive we carry to love, hold, and connect. 

Our sexual nature is a fundamental energy we possess to create, nurture and shape the world. It enables us to create bonds by entertaining our fantasies of love, commitment, and sense of pleasure while forming our experience, social status and desirability. These notions are often shamed, boxed in or even taken advantage of, yet they ultimately ensure our very survival.

As if driven by a predatory force the dancers push forwards into the space, with a sense of discovery and an unseen connection in their individuality. Through this sense of anticipation, the dancers meet in lost moments – as if mating rituals test their boundaries by encountering each other in brief moments of time. It’s tribal and every growing rhythm and  sensation pushes the work forwards, resulting in a ritualistic unity where endurance reaches a climax to ultimately find sweet release and comfort. Where harmony, tenderness and care are ever present and the memory of love lingers in the body.

‘Heart Drive’ was created on Ballet BC, under the artistic direction of Medhi Walerski and premiered in Vancouver, Canada. It is a special collaboration and co-production with Tero Saarinen Company in Helsinki – and will be restaged and reworked on a specially selected group of artists there. 


More about Ballet BC…

More about Tero Saarinen Company…


Choreography / Concept / Direction: Imre van Opstal & Marne van Opstal

Music: Amos Ben-Tal (new composition)

Set Design: Tom Visser, Imre van Opstal & Marne van Opstal

Costume Design: Imre van Opstal & Marne van Opstal in consultation with Kate Burrows

Light Design: Tom Visser

Performers: Vivian Ruiz, Jacob Williams, Orlando Harbutt, Chloe Albaret, Kiana Jung, Michael Garcia, Sarah Pippin, Rae Srivastava

Duration: 32 minutes

Premiere: Ballet BC, 2022


‘Dancers move ferally, often on all fours, gyrating their hips, lunging low to the floor; they slip through each other’s open legs and pull each other hungrily. The van Opstals’ movement language is distinct and a bit surreal, full of distorted bends, ever-flexed feet, and broken-doll disruptions. The partnering is an innovative highlight, with spectacular, sultry work from Kiana Jung with Michael Garcia, Pippin with Srivastava, and guest artist Chloé Albaret with emerging artist Orlando Harbutt. Men pull the women over their heads, legs opening into erotic open Vs; one turns his partner, straight upside down with her head on the floor, like a slow drill.’

‘Haunting and dreamlike, feeling a bit like Bosch by way of The Matrix, Heart Drive is a strange and alluring taste of the European vanguard. The crowd on opening night was up for the challenge, giving it a loud standing O.’ – Stir