Thursday, August 6, 2015

Hello. It is with great pleasure and anticipation for being on site that I am greeting you for the first time. Thank you for having me! In preparation for this choreographic residency in September I have been meeting with some collaborators to begin the conceptual and material development for the choreographic work to be, Elemental Forms, and here I would like to share with you some of our current inspirations in thought and image. My sense is that this work wants to become a kind of embedding into site, space, and time. A way for the human body to become 'of' a space beyond being 'in' it and an attempt to experience the body in performance as a 'fixture' while shedding some potential expectation around what it means to be a dancing body in public performance. Some of the words I and my co-dancer and collaborator, Samantha Mohr, are bringing into our process are: fossils, mark-making, imprinting, embedding, reflection, fixtures, and shell formations.
When contemplating the notion of becoming a 'fixture' and also presenting a dance work, time becomes an interesting consideration. How do we define the durational boundaries of something that wants to be fixed? I feel that many of the choreographic gestures will not only engage the natural elements on site as well as the aesthetic architecture and its history, but will also take their time to resonate. I can see Elemental Forms becoming a durational work performed as an installation. What would it be like to take our time and sink into being there with each other, the site, and the public? We'll find out what this all means and what changes, falls away, or remains during our creative process, but I will continue these lines of inquiry as a way of approaching 'site-specific' dance-making at the Annenberg Community Beach House.
Lynn Ellen Bathke, collaborator and costume-designer extraordinaire, has already begun construction on what will be a series of garments that layer and peel away based on the ideas mentioned above. Her work also looks at the styles and fashions depicted in photographs within the Marion Davies Guest House. I could not be more excited to be working with her on this project! Here are some of Lynn's initial designs and fabric swatches:
These last few images are sourced from this site: http://www.kuriositas.com/2011/07/curious-tale-of-denishawn.html and depict the Denishawn School of Dance and Related Arts founded in 1915 in Los Angeles. The lineage of early American Modern Dance in Los Angeles will be yet another thread of inquiry for this residency and potential source for movement generation.
That's all for now. I hope to see you at the Body-Mind Centering workshop with Gillian McGinty on August 18th!

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