bio michel alex
Born in Paris - France (1970)
(2000 to PRESENT DATE)
He's one of the three co-founders of the following venues:
The Alternative Cultural Center
Customised rehersal studios
360º transdisciplinary studio
The Black Box project evolved as the STRANGE Gallery
Multipurpose Exhibit Venue
Import & Export of arts
Custom Café Theater
Le Cabaret Rock
Bohemian Stage & Diner
Project UR "Upcycle-Recycle"
Artistic Experimentation Studios
Residencies for Artists & Students
Arts General Council / Direcção Geral das Artes (Portugal)
In 2021, his mise en scéne for the "Going Crazy" show, co-directed with Custom Circus, won the acceptance of the portuguese DGA - Ministry of Culture
In 2021, by invitation from KASAPT and Maison de l'Europe, he became an Erasmus + tutor for the following courses fields: Arts, Culture, Shows, Events, Contents and Entertainment.
Representing until now countries like France, Germany, Nederlands, Portugal and Spain,
In 2021 his long term membership within the Custom Circus company was awarded by the innovating and entrepeneurship international platform "Innovate World"
ERIH - European Route of Industrial Heritage
In 2019 his long term contribution for Nirvana Studios development, granted for that same project the ERIH oficial membership
National Museums Network - RNM (Rede Nacional de Museus - Portugal)
In 2018 within the visual arts fields, his co-artistic relationship with Custom Circus integrated the oficial national circuit of the prestigious RNM. whitch enabled them towards the celebration of protocols with important museums, such as the Museu Nacional dos Coches and the Museu nacional Ferroviário.
Since 2015 the two cultural entities he co-founded (Custom Circus and Nirvana Studios) have been affiliated to the City Hall Cultural Council of Oeiras Municipality..
Ministry of Culture - Portugal
Since 2006 he has been an internship's active tutor for several academic institutions in the cultural fields related courses, working for: Escola Superior de Turismo do Estoril; Instituto Superior Técnico; ETIC; Restart, Vale do Rio and several professional schools in the metropolitan Lisbon area.
ARTISTIC or CONCEPTUAL GROUPS and ORGANIZATIONS
He's one of the three co founders of the following projects:
Transdisciplinary Theater Company and Visual Arts
Artists Collective, Producers and Entertainment Technicians
He's the consultant of Escola Flamenca Alejandra Gutkin (escolaflamenca.com)
He's one of the STRANGE Gallery curators, which harbors several touring projects and creators from around the world
He's co founder and coordinator of the Wild in the Photo movement, a conceptual photographic manifesto in process
Worked at Nivana Productions since 1996 as a méteur en scéne designing exclusive shows for international corporates, working with several artistic companies. He closes this cycle after designing also oficial events for intensive periods like the Expo 98 and the Euro 2004, At the end of 2004 he signs exclusivity with Custom Circus, directing the following shows for this company:
A Saga da Roda (The Wheel Saga)
Lua Cheia (Full Moon)
Teatro Sobre Rodas (Theater on Wheels)
Prisioneiros do Blues (Prisoners of the Blues)
Performers do Fogo (Fire Performers)
Le Cabaret Rock
A Viagem (The Journey)
Herdeiros do Apokalipse - Apokalipse Heirs
ACTING and PERFORMANCE
As an actor and musician he surpassed well over two thousand hours on stage with more than one thousand shows for Custom Circus alone, embodying his multipolar character Michel Gigolo, which shelters in it's madness other characters like Tralala Millionaire, 1ManBlues, among others.
The major part of this path is narrated on his novel "A Fantástica Maldição Gutkin"
Publisher Edições: Verbi Gratia 2020
He's one of the three co-authors of the following work:
Band Box Corridors , Nº01, Nº02, Nº03 - Rock Art
(2006, 2008, 2009)
Artexpress Mural - Wall of Fame
Custom Café Theater - Collection & Gallery
Herdeiros do Apokalipse - Roadshow Exhibition
Octopus - Cybernetic Contraption
Nirvana Studios Tour - Outdoor & Digital Gallery
Mund Unid - Exhibition
Absurdium - Exhibition
Limbus Infinitus - 1.0 and 2.0 versions
Loco´motive - Performative Instalation
The Paradoxal Collection - Tour
Museu Nacional dos Coches (colecção residente)
Museu Nacional Ferroviário - Entroncamento (colecção residente)
Art Collection available at www.customcircus.com/art
*Also check "Scenographic Instalations" and "Conceptual & Upcycling Architecture"
Signs the authorship of the following books:
"A Saga da Roda"
(1988, 2004, 2019) Editorial Divergência
"Herdeiros do Apokalipse"
(2016) Edições do Pelouro da Cultura da Câmara Municipal de Oeiras.
Winner of the great prize Adamastor (2021)
(2006, 2019) Editorial Divergência
Linked to the genesis of Nirvana Studios thru ERIH - European Route of Industrial Heritage
(2012, 2019) Editorial Divergência
"A Fantástica Maldição Gutkin"
With the IFICT curatorship - Instituto de Formação, Investigação Cultural e Teatral
(2020) Edições Verbi Gratia
Affiliated with the FMNF - Fundação do Museu Nacional Ferroviário
(2020) by Editorial Divergência
With an oficial preface from the Fundação Marquês de Pombal
(2021) by Editorial Divergência
Collaborations on other books:
"Nirvana Studios Tour Ebook "
"Adolfo Gutkin, A Utopia Multicultural e Rebelde"
(2019) Edições Giostro - Brasil
(2019) under his alter ego Michel Gigolo. Editorial Divergência
Records the following original soundtracks albums with the Custom Circus band in the same years of the related shows:
Le Cabaret Rock
Les Voyages de L'emotion
Discography and credits available at www.customcircus.com/music
*CONCEPTUAL and UPCYCLING ARCHITECTURE
He's one of the three creators of these projects:
Global project of the architectural, scenery and thematic aesthetics for the Alternative Cultural Center
Band Boxes Studios
Dynamic Containers Studios for Performers
Custom Café Theater
Le Cabaret Rock
Residencies for Artists and Students
EVENTS and CULTURAL PLATFORMS
He's co founder of these projects:
Festival Nirvana Studios - Open Day
OBS - Oeiras Band Sessions
Oeiras Fora da Caixa
Cultural Online News Channel
*PERMANENT SCENOGRAPHIC INSTALLATIONS*
Backstage Army Truck
On the Road Again
A post apocaliptic performative artistic set based on a 99 tons, 1904 locomotive
Other installations can be seen at www.nirvana.pt/mapa
*MOBILE SCENOGRAPHIC INSTALLATIONS
Arena Lua Cheia - Full Moon Arena
Airstream Caravans Nº01, Nº02, Nº03, Nº04, Nº05
Raver Trucks Nº01, Nº2
Mad Cars Nº01, Nº02, Nº03, Nº04, Nº05
Psygon Hot Rod
Classic Trucks Electric Trios Nº01, Nº02, Nº03, Nº04
Old Buses Nº01, Nº02, Nº03
Make a Promise
More Scenographic Instalations can be seen at www.customcircus.com/art
(1990 – 2000)
Features in some comercial videos
In Lisbon attends Law course at Faculdade Moderna with two interruptions between 1990 to 1993, one due to the call by the French Army during the Gulf War which he declined prefering servicing 9 months in the Portuguese Army allowed by his second citizenship; and the definitive other due to his passion for performative arts
Was assistant at IFICT- Instituto de Formação e Investigação Cultural e Teatral (Theatral and Cultural Institute of Training and Investigation) from 1991 to 1992 and a Pyrotechnic FX freelancer roadie on several tours such as U2 and Dire Straits within the same period.
Also in 1992, invited by the Argentine director Adolfo Gutkin, he would be again in contact with the Archaos company but this time as a scout for Eutaxia - Assessoria Cultural for the Italy-Spain-Portugal Archaos tour, but due to that French company's demise in the same year, the tour was canceled and he joined the same Eutaxia's production structure for the tours of Spanish companies La Fura Dels Baus and Els Comediants
As an assistent and ad hoc disciple, his professional relationship with the director and meteur en scéne Adolfo Gutkin spaned from 1992 to 1999 as a member of the artistic production teams for over one hundred shows from the following companies:
Ana La China (ES)
Argentinian National Company
Arturo Toscanini (IT)
Ballet Bolshoi (RUS)
Bederen Bat (ES)
Beijin Opera (CHN)
Bulgarian National Opera
Chick Corea (USA)
Christophe Berthonneau (FR)
Companhia IFICT (PT)
Els Comediants (ES)
Gelabert Azzopardi (ES)
Groupe F (FR)
Jacka Maré Spino (FR)
Jêrome Deschamps (FR)
Karmen Larumbe (ARG)
Kiev's Ópera (RUS)
Kirov's Ballet (RUS)
La Fura Dels Baus (ES)
La Cuadra de Sevilla (ES)
Marcel Marceau (FR)
Michael Nyman (UK)
Minsk Ballet (RUS)
National Chinese Circus
Pirotecnia Minhota (PT)
Pirotecnia Oleirense (PT)
Plan K (BE)
Plasticiens Volants (FR)
Pupi & Fresedde (IT)
Russian Cossacks (RUS)
Semola Teatre (ES)
Ta Fantastika (CZ)
Tarbes Orchestra (FR)
Teatro do Ornitorrinco (BR)
Theatre du Mouvement (FR)
Transe Express (FR)
Turbo Unit (UK)
UR Teatre (ES)
Vol Ras (ES)
XPTO Company (BR)
In 1994 he’s a member of the artistic production team for Lisboa'94-Capital of Culture in the avant guarde theater department, also colaborating with Eutaxia-Assessoria Cultural.
In 1996 he co-founds Nirvana Productions where he starts his theater direction carreer, mostly aimed for international corporative events and multimedia happenings for movies and music record launches, from studios such as Polygram, BMG, Sony, Warner, Universal among others.
In Nirvana Productions and Eutaxia (just in 1996 edition) he co-creates and co-produces at former Aquaparque do Restelo, the two editions of GML-Grande Meeting de Lisboa 1996 and 1997, which was the first Portuguese event dedicated to the whole Road Culture, its arts and emerging subcultures.
In 1997 he’s co-author of the Portuguese Phonographic Association’s Digital Award
During Expo98 Lisbon he’s field artistic manager in the areas of Outdoor Theater and Performances, colaborating also with Eutaxia-Assessoria Cultural
(1980 - 1990)
Starts juvenile acting in Paris at the théatre Amateur de la colonie Porte de Versailles and later on attends within summer camps workshops of multidisciplinary performance, nouveau cirque and visual arts with the street artists of Le Centre Pompidou and the Colonie d’Issy les Moulineaux, where one of the monitors who belongued to the Archaos troupe took him to entourages of other companies for some set ups in Paris.
Learns piano and Blues harmonica and plays in underground garage bands
In high school attends Art, Design and Sports courses on and off between France and Portugal
Very influenced by industrial post punk, French interventive and avant guarde theater and nouveau cirque which explodes in that period, he writes the novel A Saga da Roda (The Wheel Saga) in 1988, which would later be in the origin of Custom Circus
Was one of the assistants of the Portuguese sculptor Luis Valadares from 1989 to 1990
Conceived in 1970 by existentialist parents and a hippie big sister as spiritual guide, he lived a Tom Sawyer free childhood divided between the Seine waterfront and the Estoril coast. Thanks to its parent’s job at hotel events and Paris theaters, he was an adorable child imposing on ocasion his annoying presence to such artists as Bob Dylan, Elizabeth Taylor or Salvador Dali.
With the family also belonging to the opening night claques of mythical theaters like Moulin Rouge, Olympia, Folies Bergeres, Crazy Horse, Calcutá, Lido, L’ópera e Le Chatelet, he also grew up surrounded by scenery, projectors, young ballerinas and decadent musicians. Through an adolescence connected to the 1980’s underground his many influences were dangerous cocktails of Cabaret, Punk, Goth, Blues, Psychobilly, Archaos anarchic shows, Russian Theater and Hells Angels parties in a condensate of Edith Piaf, Ramones, Joy Division, Muddy Waters, Cramps, Mad Max, Easy Rider and Stanislavsky.
Constantly defied and tormented by a restless soul he also experienced, outside show business, several professions and life styles, being an entrepreneur, artisanship, translator, fairground vendor, antiquarian, advertiser, sailor, trucker, activist, free surfer and conciliated an alternative life as a 1% biker in the Road Runners from 1994 to 2002, the year he also became a father and his responsability broaden to more directions.