Ján Ševčík

Choreographer, dancer, director, pedagogue Ján Ševčík (1977, Bratislava) was born in an artistic family, and dance and theatre environment became an everyday part of his life. His mother, sister, and uncle were soloists for the Slovak State Traditional Dance Company (SĽUK) for many years. His father, Milan Ševčík, was not only an eminent soloist and later a dance pedagogue, but also the director of one of dance groups in SĽUK.

Ján Ševčík studied choreography at the Music and Dance Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava. In 2016, he completed his doctoral study, in which he researched the theme of dance and film as two dynamic types of media – till this day a rather under-researched topic in Slovakia. Among other things, the dissertation addressed the elements and explored the potential of the creative process behind the making of dance movies, while also examining the interaction between the two media. Ševčík took an interest in the prospects of making and developing this young art form in Slovakia.

He worked as a dancer in the artistic ensemble Lúčnica, the Bratislava Dance Theatre, the New Stage Theatre, and Ján Ďurovčík’s company. Between 2001 and 2011, he worked as a soloist and choreographer at the Het Internationaal Danstheater (IDT) in Amsterdam in the Netherlands. There he also had the first opportunity to develop his talent as a choreographer. In 2002, he staged a short dance composition entitled The Road, in 2003 the production Beat (part of the RHYTMmmm programme), and in 2004 Bunkoš (part of the DANCE 4EVER programme).

In 2009, Ševčík worked with the Dutch IDT company in Amsterdam to present his Academy of Performing Arts diploma thesis entitled Bridges. In the same year, he did the choreographies for The Rite (part of the SPIRIT programme), The Mask and Adelaars/Eagles (part of the Stampende stilte programme) for the Het Internationaal Danstheater. The production Adelaars/Eagles represented IDT at the annual prestigious charity event Dans Benefiet Gala 2011 in Arnhem, the Netherlands. This showcase of dance performances regularly hosts the best dance art produced during the theatre season in the Netherlands. Adelaars/Eagles allowed Ševčík to start his artistic collaboration with the renowned Dutch ensemble Introdans which included the show in its repertory. For this unique Dutch company, Ševčík did the choreography for their production Less during the same theatre season.

In Slovakia, he worked for the SĽUK ensemble, where he staged the small dance performance called I Said You! (2009). He was one of the choreographers who participated in the creation of the programme for SĽUK’s Dance in the Shards (2012), as well as in the programme Criss-Cross (2013). In Slovakia, he did the choreography for the 2010 composition of contemporary choreography art of the Ballet of the Slovak National Theatre entitled Made in Slovakia (Jaroslav Ivanenko Birthday, Šárka Ondrišová 4MEN, Ján Ševčík Drafted!, Igor Holováč Angels above the City). In the same year, he created another choreography for SĽUK – the dance production Chorea SlovacaDance Etudes for SĽUK.

At present, he continues to work as a choreographer and collaborates occasionally with SĽUK, Ballet of the Slovak National Theatre, and the Dutch companies Introdans and deWereldDansFabriek. His work is marked by a strong bond with his folkloric roots, especially folk dance, which was for him a kind of gateway to the world of dance and theatre. His interest in the medium of dance film, as well as adapting dance productions for the film format, has so far been recognised by numerous awards at international festivals, dance film shows and competitions.

Since December 2011, he has held the position of the choreographer and artistic director of the dance section of the Slovak State Traditional Dance Company (SĽUK).