dance & aesthetics, mostly
Recently I was very privileged to attend the inaugural Aerowaves Spring Forward dance platform, ‘Plesna Vesna’, in Ljubljana. As well as watching a marathon 20 performances in two-and-a-half days, I was fortunate to be able to talk with many wise and experienced dance producers, presenters and makers, and to listen and learn from them. Read more of this post
Siobhan Davies and Matthias Sperling’s To Hand and Stephanie Schober’s Traffic both take a broadly experimental, ‘research-based’ approach to dance making, but the resulting works are very different. Davies and Sperling’s collaboration was shown in the Whitechapel Gallery, in the space housing Claire Barclay’s surreal and somewhat eerie sculptural installation Shadow Spans. On the day I was there, Sperling spent an hour crawling round the room balancing on upturned plastic measuring jugs, weaving in and out of Barclay’s sculptures while trying not to let his wiry frame touch the floor. He later returned and repeated the same activity for another hour. For about the first ten minutes it was fascinating to watch, prompting thoughts about space as a problem to be solved, and the body as a tool the mind uses in solving it. After that it became a bit like watching someone trying to do a sudoku puzzle. And that someone won’t let you help. Read more of this post
For a while I was beginning to wonder if I’d already grown too old for new music. Over the past few months, however, I’ve had my ears opened to a whole world of beguiling, engaging music I never knew existed. This music is often categorised under labels such as ‘microsound’, ‘modern classical’, or ‘post-ambient’, though I must admit I have no idea what any of those terms actually mean; typically it is open in its form (as opposed to the rigid verse-chorus structure of most pop music) and tends to use natural acoustic sounds that are then heavily processed, often beyond recognition.
In a couple of previous posts I mentioned that I’m producing a dance triple bill. The event is called Thinking, Feeling, Doing, and will be happening on Thursday 3rd March at The Gulbenkian in Canterbury, Kent. Hagit Yakira will be showing her new work Sunday Morning, and Maaikor Dance will perform several short pieces from their ‘dance-poem anthology’ responding to different landscapes. Katia Lom’s Elvis I Love You, an intelligent and moving piece featuring two versions of a classic Elvis song and audio interviews with the King, rounds off the evening.
It’s going to be a great night of engaging and thought-provoking dance, so if you can make it to Canterbury you shouldn’t miss it! For London folks it’s only an hour away from St Pancras.
See you there!
Resolution! 2011: De Preter & Svensson, Inverted Dance, Hagit Yakira
The Place, London
Friday 18th February 2011
Happiness. Sometimes you find yourself in the middle of a moment, either extraordinary or mundane – swimming in the sea, dancing in a club, even watching a ballet – and you’re hit by the realisation that you’re happy. Time shifts down a gear, slows to a crawl, as if your body was trying to make this moment last as long as possible, to squeeze every last drop out each and every movement, sound, and image. At times like these you understand why you’re always rushing to keep up with the world as it flashes by, unable to pause, to let things be for a while. It’s because most of the time, happiness seems fugitive. Read more of this post