Franca Ferrari

progetto contemporary dance

a second life

“dance is a
never-ending journey”

Her encounter with dance in 1971, gave rise to what she considers to be her second life since she feels that dance is a never-ending journey and therefore satisfies her need for change. Change which was absolutely vital in such a difficult moment of her life, but was to become the leitmotif of her work and train of thought.

Before coming across dance she worked in publishing (Linus and Garzanti) then she experimented living in Africa, in Mozambique.

She studied under two important dance masters: Rosalia Chladek and Dominique Dupuy. She also considers her father Urbano Ferrari, a physicist, to be one of her mentors. In fact when she announced to her family “I am going to France to study dance” her father answered “then I must absolutely give you a lesson in dynamics” thus laying the foundations for her vision of dance. This also influenced the teaching she received from her other two masters. Franca Ferrari’s teaching method is organised according to the dynamic approach so for her dance becomes the relationship between body and physical strength.

Her research and ideas are immortalised in
LESSICO DINAMICO Dynamic Dictionary a video-lexicon.

The Encyclopedia of women pays tribute to Franca Ferrari

Read The Story

Dance is an activity, a performative action, the result of a creative process.


Franca Ferrari coreographer

Dancer, teacher of contemporary dance and cultural operator




"Lessico dinamico"

Franca Ferrari's video-lexicon edited by Simona da Pozzo.
The video-lexicon project has a modular and procedural structure.
Begun in October 2013, it gives food for thought with the intention of communicating a point of view and gathering others.


Open the Project
Quotations from the videos
  • "The body is an intellect"
  • "Speaking of directions in space I intended energies"
  • "Words issuing from the body"
  • "Listening is behavioural"
  • "Learning to dance by entering into a world"
  • "Staying with what I know and what I will know"
FRANCA FERRARI through the years

choreographer, teacher of contemporary dance and cultural operator

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Cadeaux Mainòl

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Apart from various performances she produced two videos between 1990 to 2010 as Compagnia Cadeaux Mainòl: “Rewind remind and forward” (which won the 2nd prize in The electronic coreographer competition) and “Appunti” (Notes).

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In 2011 she founded the “Progetto D.Arte” Company, based on research into a new way of performing: creating “thematic modules of improvisation” to compose a coreographic structure.

Dance is an activity, a performative action, the result of a creative process. These are the linchpins of the Progetto D.Arte production.

“Scelta R.evocabile” (R.evocable Choice) (which won the Confine Corpo Prize (Body Limits) in the "Le Voci dell’Anima competition" (Voices of the Soul); “a(t)tratti” (a play on words: a tratti = in segments, attratti = attracted); “R.evocabile” (R.evocable) and the performative action “Sorgente” (Source). Many performances were created ad hoc for important Italian museums: (Museo del 900 di Milano – the Nineteenth Century Museum of Milan; Museo della Scienza e Tecnologia di Milano - the Museum of Science and Technology in Milan; GAMeC di Bergamo - Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art in Bergamo; MAMbo di Bologna - Museum of Modern Art of Bologna and, forthcoming, the Milan Triennal Museum in October 2016).

A new phase began in 2016 in which Franca Ferrari has two objectives: to perform abroad, firstly in China, and to work together with other dance companies in Italy.

Teacher – researcher

Her role as instructor is very important: she has been teaching since 1979. In 1981 she opened the Centre of contemporary dance C.I.M.D. in Milan. Between 1993 and 2003 the C.I.M.D. was one of the schools recognised by the French Ministry of Culture for preparation for the DE (Diplome d’Etat) for contemporary dance. It is in fact the Italian branch of the prestigious French school R.I.D.C. directed by Brigitte Hyon, with whom she has set up a valued partnership. Since 2004 Franca Ferrari has offered professional formation for contemporary dancers independent from institutions.

Cultural operator

Hers was the idea of the PIU’ CHE DANZA festival, in partnership with the CRT Triennale dell’Arte theatre in Milan directed by Franco Laera. The first edition was in 2014. This festival is dedicated to interpreting performances of contemporary creativity with special consideration of artists from Lombardy.

Public commitment to dance

She is attentive to cultural politics in her sector. She is president of the c-DAP Lombard Coordination of Contemporary Dance and Performing Arts. Between 2011 and 2014 she was part of the presidential team of Federdanza (national Agis).

Cadeaux Mainòl: Photo Courtesy © Daniel Soto | Lessico Dinamico: video-frame Courtesy © Simona da Pozzo.
Photos fullscreen & Portrait photography of Franca Ferrari & Photo Courtesy ©