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Showing posts from August, 2011

Ingrid Hansen and SNAFU take on Fort York: SummerWorks 2011 Dance Interviews

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By SNAFU Dance Theatre’s Ingrid Hansen answers some questions about Pretty Little Instincts.LR: What inspired you to create Pretty Little Instincts?IH: It’s really hard to say specifically – I think we’re inspired and influenced by everything we take in on some level. I actually started brewing this show while on a cross-Canada theatre for young audiences tour – even though Pretty Little Instincts has nothing specifically to do with youth. I was dealing with the wildness within myself, watching the people around me suppress their own instincts and intuition – and things began to grow. A bit like the mould growing out the damp walls of the apartment we’re staying in here in Toronto. It just erupts. Then spreads. Then you breathe in the spores. I’m not sure where I’m going with this metaphor but let’s pretend it’s really profound.LR: How are you adapting to the space at Fort York?IH: We use the huge sloping walls of the Fort, the deep grassy moat, and a wall set with huge woo…

Liz Peterson and Express Yourself at SummerWorks 2011

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Liz Peterson speaks about Express Yourself playing at Hub 14 as part of this years SummerWorks Festival.LR: What was the creative process like for Express Yourself — can you describe a bit how this work came to be?LP: Well, it began really as an exploration of the process itself. Sean O’Neill (my collaborator and director of the show) approached me with this idea to create a show that was about “gestures of communication”.We decided to develop a play without a script that was about performance. So we started with a couple of ideas, some shared influences, such as Pina Bausch, Marina Abramovic and we began to rehearse, without knowing what it was going to be.Although there were a couple of elements that Sean knew had to be in the show, specific songs or stories or images, we didn’t have a structure. We worked like that for about 6 months, and then we decided that we had something that we were ready to show, but first we invited a couple of people to rehearsals, Ame Henderson being one …

Susanna Hood, Shudder at the 2011 SummerWorks Festival

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Susanna Hood Susanna Hood, creator of Shudder and artistic director ofhum dansoundart, speaks about remounting a work, replacing herself and finding her voice.LR: Susanna, you are dealing with an injury — how have you adapted the rehearsal process for Shudder to accommodate this?SH: The main adjustment has been to replace myself with a performer who I really trust. Linnea Swan has performed the role once before, and I’m happy to have the chance to deepen my work with her in this piece.I am actually looking forward to re-approaching the piece from the outside, where, in fact, I spent a good percentage of the time over its three-year creation process. I have some new perspective on the work as a whole, and liberating myself of the role of performer may allow me make more impactful changes to the piece.I’ve also done something I’ve never done before, which is to give the performers two full days just to recover the material without me in the room. I did this to ensure that I wouldn’t get …

interview with Allison Cummings from Combat at the SummerWorks Festival 2011

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Allison Cummings on Combat: 2011 SummerWorks Dance InterviewsBy Allison Cummings, co-director of a joint production by tiny bird theatre and Sore for Punching You, reveals a bit about Combat, premiering at SummerWorks Festival.LR: What is Combat all about?AC: Combat takes us into a mundane office in what might be Toronto where a young woman, returning from working in a conflict-zone overseas, attempts to re-enter society. Here she finds the tiny conflicts and bids for power amplified. Removed from the sensory experience of war she watches as her office becomes a battleground.The piece explores scale and distance and how our relationship to conflict embodies itself into our everyday lives, whether it is happening far away on a mass scale, or within the confines of our interpersonal dynamics.LR: How did you find or decide on your collaborators?AC: Claire Calnan (co-director of Combat) and I began talking about collaborating together about two years ago, as we were both inter…

Interview with Kevin Michael Shea of Common Descent's Hero and Leander at Summerworks 2011

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photo by Danielle Donn
It’s Lucy again (Blue Ceiling dance director, dancer, choreographer, multi-disciplinary performer and person very curious about how artists make their work) with some interviews involving members of Summerworks Festival productions with a dance or physical focus. Hope you enjoy them! First up: an interview with Director Kevin Michael Shea of Common Descent’s production Hero and Leander.LR: What inspired you to work on the Hero and Leander story?KMS: It’s a really gorgeous story, but it hasn’t been interpreted too much throughout history, which means we can kind of make it whatever we want without having to worry about most people’s expectations of it. The actual myth, revolving around Hero and Leander, is really only about half of the play – the other half concerns a second relationship, inspired by the myth but with different characters, which means that even if people do know the myth, there will be a bunch of surprises in our version of it.The story also just …