ABOUT US Research and Development project, curated by Dance Research Studio. Choreographed and directed by Jacky Lansley with film artist Roswitha Chesher, Composer Sylvia Hallett, Dramaturg Ramsay Burt and Performers: Vincent Ebrahim, Ursula Early, Lucy Tuck, Esther Huss, Ingrid MacKinnon, Maria Ghoumrassi and Fergus Early. A first performance was presented at Siobhan Davies Studios in the Autumn 2016. After further development, the project will be touring from the Spring 2018.
"In ABOUT US we explore the mundane and the ordinary; any audience can recognize their own gestures in the movement vocabulary. The piece plays with perspective - there is no 'front' - the live actino is designed to be read from any physical and conceptual perspective. ABOUT US could be described as performance installation - which could work in a gallery, a studio theatre, a warehouse, or an outdoor public site, such as a park or station."
"an example of entering each other's worlds and crossing paths: when Esther crossed Fergus and Vincent's path (filmed on the street round the back of the studio). She was doing the street person material - with her chair slung across her torso - and they were doing the ageing photographer's sideways walking sequence. Up until then I'd thought of 'crossing paths' as a figurative description of an interdisciplinary process, but here she was literally crossing their path."
"...So this performance brings voices, genders, age and politics of the personal and the universal in to a space that is held and lifted with love. This is the type of activism and protest e need in this time of unrest."
"I was particularly impressed by the integration of ages, without having to underline the case. They were a wonderful mix of performers who were there for their skills, not because they ticked any boxes."
"I loved the aesthetic - minimalistic and clean lines - there were lots of cultural references - pop culture - but they were all subsumed in this overall 'minimalism', which worked for me."
"The space and close proximity with the performers was powerful and beautiful. This really excited me because it brings the audience and the performers together in a way where the performance becomes an active participation from all who are present."
The next phase of work on the project will see us refining the ideas and material we have generated and taking them into the creation of a fully realised performance event, accompanying exhibition and learning programme.
The final work will have built in flexibility and so be suitable for a variety of spaces; it will be available for touring from late spring 2017. For further information or to be placed on a mailing list to receive updated information on the project please contact Gwen Van Spijk on the following co-ordinates: email@example.com/ 01869 338458
"About Us, directed by Jacky Lansley, offers individual stories from an inter- generational cast of interdisciplinary artists. Recognition of elements of the stories, shared with the audience through movement, voice and film creates an empathy and connection between audience and performers. This evocative. fluid work has the potential to be performed with different casts in a variety of venues. The performance at the Siobhan Davies studios had an effective three dimensional quality as the performers danced in a corridor between two rows of seated audience with films screened on the walls behind them. At some points some of the performers danced in the corridor between the audience whilst others danced behind. This created an enjoyable kinaesthetic sense of being surrounded by movement and being in the performance. The next development of this work promises to be intriguing and thought provoking."