Vartan Bassil is the mastermind behind dance group Flying Steps and also the key piece in the puzzle of Red Bull Flying Bach. Vartan looks back at the year just gone to bring us his highlights of 2011.
Our best show was in the Dusseldorf Concert Hall, because of its great acoustics, so we could get the feel of the live music better (the piano and the harpsichord), which is very important for our performance. And, also, the audience was with us right from the beginning.
The best audience was in Aschaffenburg in the Municipal Theatre, because it was a really intimate theatre and the audience was very close to the stage. Did you get to see the show from close up? We got a standing ovation that went on for several minutes and we had to keep doing encores because the audience wouldn’t let us go.
The best tour location was in Vienna, in the Opera House! It’s one of the most important theatres in Europe; I think any artist would love to appear on that stage!
The performance that we were most pleased with was in Vienna because we had two double performances in the Opera House. One show lasts 70 minutes and that’s very tiring so we didn’t know if we could manage a second show on the same day. It was a huge challenge but we nailed it!
'The biggest laugh was in Berlin - Lil-Rock didn't change quickly enough and came onstage with his pants open and his shoe laces undone'
There was a scary moment in Munich, in the Herkulessaal (The Hercules Concert Hall) when we were onstage and the dance floor was not properly secured and, in the middle of our performance, the floor suddenly slipped half a metre which gave us a huge shock. In between the dance pieces the crew had to pull the floor back into the right position and secure it – and the audience didn’t know anything had happened!
Undoubtedly, we’d most like to go back to Denmark, because it was our first international show. It was nerve-racking because we didn’t know how the Danish audience would react to the show. In fact, it exceeded our expectations – the venue was superb, the audience was great and we’ve been invited back again this year.
My personal highlight of the 2011 tour was in Bonn, in the old Chamber because this was the former Chamber of the German Federal Government, where Members of Parliament sat from 1992 to 1999 and I never dreamt that I would be performing there with my group.
The most exhausting was in Berlin, in the old transformer/power station, because we danced a total of 13 shows and it was pretty cold in the venue as well.
The biggest laugh was in Berlin in the old transformer/power station, because Lil-Rock almost made a late entrance. He had changed too early and then noticed that he’d got the wrong costume on. He had to change quickly and didn’t quite get it together so he went on stage with his pants open and his shoes laces undone. At first I didn’t know what had happened, but after our piece I got it and I nearly died laughing!