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Javier López Piñón

Born in Barcelona, lives in Holland, where he graduated in stage-direction at the Amsterdam Theatre School. He has staged both opera and spoken theatre with the major companies and festivals in Holland and abroad (France, UK, Germany, Italy, early music festivals of Utrecht, San Antonio-Texas, Ambronay, St Petersburg a.o.) and he has collaborated with conductors like Kenneth Montgomery (a.o. Cosí fan tutte, L'Elisir d'amore and Trovatore for Opera Northern Ireland) and William Christie (M.A. Charpentier / David & Jonathas, Lully / Thésée, Campra / L'Europe Galante) and Richard Eagarr (Alcina). Also, he is actively involved in the creation of new opera works and has staged a number of world premières of new works by young Dutch and foreign composers. As a specialist in 17th and 18th-century acting techniques, he gives masterclasses at the Amsterdam Drama School, the Utrecht Early Music Festival and with Dutch theatre companies. He teaches at both the Dutch National Opera Academy (the opera department of the Royal Conservatoire and the Amsterdam Conservatoire) and the Theatre School in Amsterdam. Since 1999 he has established intensive contacts with colleagues in West and South Africa. In 2005, he has directed at the Ecole Internationale de Théâtre du Bénin in Cotonou Madame Paradji, with a libretto by José Pliya and music by Angélique Kidjo, followed by repeated projects and leading to his participation in the educational council of the school. His continuing interest in theatre training in West Africa has established relationships with other schools and institutions in the region, notably the Ecole Nationale de Théâtre et Dance in Abidjan. Recently, he staged epic drama based on Ramayana (2009) and Soundjata (2010) in the municipal park in Hollands capital using a range of actors, musicians, dancers, puppeteers and visual artists. In 2013, he semi-staged a production of West Side Story for the 125 anniversary of the famous Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw.

From january-july 2014- he fulfilled ad interim the position of artistic director of the Theatre Directing department of Amsterdam Theaterschool, where he graduated himself in 1980. End of the 2015-16 season he retired from his teaching jobs. He has finished as head of drama at the Dutch National Opera Academy with a new production from Hanna Kulenty’s Mother of Black-Winged Dreams.

In October 2016 Javier got invited to talk at a conference on the subject of Theatre Pedagogy at the Real Escuela de Arte Dramatico in Madrid. August 2017 he finished his Master studies at Utrecht University with a very well received thesis entitled: Borrowers and Lenders: Exploring Contemporary Intercultural Theatre in Francophone West Africa. Anyone interested in the thesis: drop him a note through the contact provided. June 2021, he graduated summa cum laude at Ghent University as Master in African Studies with the well-received thesis entitled Come you Spirits, Unsex me Here: Contemporary Theatre and African Ceremonies as a Playground for Alternatieve Masculinities. Both his previous and this thesis together might form the base of a future PhD, research. Anyone interested in the new thesis is welcome to drop him a message.

In May 2022 he received in Lomé (Togo)an award from the Festival International de Théâtre et Arts Plastiques and the Togolese Ministry of Culture and Tourism for his efforts to promote African culture. From 2023 onwards he will be teaching at the recently founded Ecole Supérieure des Arts de la Scène.

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