EN ROUTE - GO TO
Kenneth Myers Centre, Shortland Street, Auckland
02/06/2012 - 03/06/2012
En Route To Success
The Producing Project presents: En Route – a three part performance journey debuting original work from New Zealand’s freshest choreographers. The En Route series meets you in the sombre depths of our final hours and moves you towards the celebration of a new life (holding your hand through all the ups and downs that lie in between).
After the highly successful Live Series (2011), The Producing Project continues to provide a platform for young producers to hone their skills in a practical environment. The Producing Project is Auckland’s answer to the lack of producers to facilitate dance and theatre in Auckland. Its participants present a series of performances that not only provide hands on learning for the producing team, but an invaluable platform for emerging dance artists in New Zealand to put their work on show.
Go To June 2nd–‐ 7pm, June 3rd–‐2pm & 7pm – Kenneth Myers Centre, 74 Shortland St, Auckland
In To July 14th–‐7pm, July 15th–‐2pm&7pm – Musgrove Studio, 8 Alfred St, Auckland
Come To Sep 1st–‐7pm Sep 2nd–‐2pm & 7pm – Fale Pasifika, 20 Wynyard St
The Producing Project looks forward to presenting a series that will challenge, amaze and excite you about the bright future of New Zealand Dance. Tickets $15/10 or $35/$25 for the season. Season tickets only available until June 1st. Season ticket holders go in the draw to win a double pass to Atamira Dance Company or The New Zealand Dance Companies premiere season!
The Producing Project is an artist run production and curatorial collective facilitated by DANZ, Dance Studies at the National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries and The University of Auckland. The Producing Project is Juanita Jellyman, Tracy Templeton, Bre Gentry, Emma Payne, Diego Torres Sarroi, Jasmine Donald, Sheridan Read, Karen Ruske, Rosa Provost, and Efim Bychkunov.
Sean Curham on Lighting design and Head of tech Efim Bychkunov.
Dances bring building alive with theatrical ambience
Review by Jenny Stevenson 03rd Jun 2012
The En Route series presents an interesting premise: a group of trainee-producers call for expressions of interest to perform, based on thematic criteria, from dance individuals and groups and then curate the works into three performances, in three different venues. Following the opening night performance there is also constructive feedback for both choreographers and producers from a panel of three industry experts.
The first of this series, Go To, explores themes of “finality, ending, moving-on and fare-welling” and is presented as ambulatory theatre with the audience members invited to view works in the various rooms of the magnificent Kenneth Myers Centre in Shortland St. Once a radio and television recording studio the building is alive with theatrical ambience and provides many interesting and varied settings for the works.
The Producer/Curators couch the performances in terms of “a journey”: moving from light into darkness; from above to below; and from the open space of the art gallery, into the specifically designed black-box space in the bowels of the building. The dance works all share a heightened reality and unashamed theatricality in their presentation, largely achieved through the atmosphere–inducing lighting design created by Sean Curham.
Immediately on entering the building the audience is confronted with live art in the art gallery: the work Body as Art, choreographed by Tracy Templeton. Inspired by the death mask, the work sees the two dancers, Febe Holmes and Jess Quaid hold positions, semi naked save for blocks of white face-paint and white gauze shapes plastered to their bodies. The dancers’ faces are set with tight unmoving features, their movements reflecting the strictures of the leaden limbs of death.
A short film The Land of Nod by Rosa Provost, is a recording of an insomniac couple on their bed, a depiction of the real problems suffered by Christchurch residents seeking elusive sleep, in the aftermath of the earthquakes and aftershocks. The film is projected in a small space against a metaphorical background of a crack in the wall. The audience can see immediately that something is amiss by the female and male lying on the “wrong sides” of the bed, respectively. The relentless tossing and turnings are speeded up to choreograph the shapes – the movement being created by the mechanism of film.
Make Me a Bed of Yellow by Tracy Trinder, by contrast is a choreography of stillness: an exquisite Orphelia-like depiction of a woman, performed by Rosie Philpott, lying on bed of flowers and leaves, lit by shafts of light, her hair streaming out like tendrils of vegetation and the music and spoken word competing for attention. The audience is cloistered around her staring down like voyeurs at the dancer’s still form. A potent image of beauty-in-death with the audiences shared focus creating a strong energy.
Shani Dickins explores the rituals of death in Would You Lend Me Your Skin? – danced by corpse-like dancers dressed in bright-coloured clothes, brazenly waltzing in a blaze of light, in a large room. The dancers confront each other in partnering and folk-dance formations and then the mood becomes sombre as heads bowed they huddle in formation and darkness, to the sound of dropping objects. The dance that follows is stately, lacking the wild abandon of the opening, with the dancers gripping the top of their heads as though to slow the decay of death.
The audience then symbolically descends to the “black box” – read “coffin” – of the basement, to be greeted by Paul Willams playing cello in a dimly-lit sepulchral setting, an enormous shadow of his moving arm being cast onto the folds of the curtained-wall. The work Grand, choreographed by Georgia J.M. Giesen shows a couple, Giesen and Kristian Larsen, dressed in sombre attire gradually move into a lighted square of light, stepping forward and then back in the manner of pilgrims journeying to a holy place. The man departs and the woman’s rictus-like composure gradually cracks, leaving her to grapple with her grief. She removes her dress and heels and allows herself to both wallow in and confront her pain, clothed in a flesh-coloured slip. The ending shows no resolution but perhaps some ability to face the sorrow.
Brigitte Knight’s work Don’t Go has a large cast of dancers: the women clothed in white long-tutu skirts and bodice tops, the men in black trousers. The performance depicts the struggle of letting go of loved-ones, through partnering and group formations, with a lovely solo by Becca Oram seeking to shake off those who would detain her. The choreographic material is accentuated through repetitions by the ensemble and a continuum of movement, as well as murky moving images projected onto the curtained wall.
The final work Of Going a short film choreographed and performed by Zahra Killeen-Chance is a subtle distillation of movement – a deconstruction of a gestural vocabulary – achieved through the hand or back-view of the shoulders moving in and out of frame and being positioned in relation to a wicker stool. In the context of the whole presentation it could represent the fleeting remembered gestures of a loved-one, but it also stands on its own as a work of choreographic fragmentation through film.
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