The music that wrote this here.
So today is my day off, so I’ve a had a very relaxed day of consuming the internet.
I’ve watched, read and listened to a few things today that have me think about things, so here’s a selection.
Cirque De Demain was a few weeks ago and a few videos of juggling acts that performed have come up on youtube. The first I watched was this act. I loved the concept and the main juggler is obviously very talented but I did feel he didn’t quite do it justice. The whole piece felt a little bit slow, especially considering the fact that there were 6 people on stage. There were a few moments that really caught me by surprise, throws and movement that makes you think ‘where did that come from?’. However, with that number of people on stage and with the styling I think the complexity should have been built more with less standing around staring at each other. Of course it is entirely possible that the whole piece reads differently live… Also, while the final trick is of course cool and hard and all that, it just didn’t seem to fit the rest of the piece at all. I found it shocking enough (in a positive way) when one of the coated people pushed the main guy about 2/3 way through but the idea of him climbing up into a 3 high was too far. Perhaps it could have been built to more through some more gentle person manipulation first but I’m not sure…
The second I watched was this solo piece by Audrey Decaillon. This had some very cool manipulation stuff, especially a lot of very original foot stuff which I really liked. The only issue that I had with the act is the same issue that I have with a lot of juggling acts. The problem of making that objects that are being manipulated (in this case clubs) feel part of the world. for this I am of course not referring to pure juggling/technical acts, then you can do what you want… However in this act she definitely is going for a particular persona. I wouldn’t go as far as calling it a character but she's definitely not just there to juggle. The bench for example made me think of a train station or somewhere where you would be waiting for something however she never 'played that.’ So back to initial thing of objects fitting the world, I ’d have preferred to see a stronger character and therefore give the clubs a purpose, or a reason to be there (even if that is just that there are there because they are… and that isn’t taken for granted.) Of course she could alternatively stripped away the confusing character and just juggled. But then it would hardly have been 'circus of tomorrow’…
I also watched a doubles trapeze act that I quite enjoyed. But there wasn’t much to it, just hard stuff done very well, bit traditional for my liking but yanoooo.
Moving on to something I read. A blog post by Zosia Dowmunt which you can read here. I had the pleasure of being directed by Zosia last year for an exciting, crazy, tiring dance-theatre piece as part of the Rough and Tumble project with People at Play. (Some pics here). In the post she talks, among other things about the motivation of her latest performance that is in development. I mention this post mainly because it sounds so interesting and I am very sad that I will not to be able to see it when it shown in London in May. The idea of a piece of dance that is directly influenced by the audience’s interaction with it (through applause) is something that makes my head spin a little as the connection between an audience and the performers can be so complicated and interesting at the best of times. It immediately makes me think of how this could work in other disciplines aside from dance… Or even multi-discipline. Juggling seemed like an obvious one especially when thinking about looped material and rhythm.