Sunday, 31 July 2005

INTAKT Interaktionslabor 3

End of these two weeks, we had a sharing for the public. I ended up wearing four sensors: two accelerometers (one on the right wrist and another on the right shoulder), a light sensor on the left arm, and a click switch on the light palm. Accelerometers can move the image as well as can jump frames in a flim as I move with impact. A light sensor can move the image and a click switch makes jump to another film. We had 12 films in the order. I start play with the first film and keep playing until I have enough. I click the switch on the palm to move to the next film, and I play with it again. My movement is improvisation in the relationship to the video image, and normally it takes 20-25 minutes to finish all the films.
We had two nights of performances: one night I performed with electronic double bass that is also improvisation and my movement changes some aspects of the sound, and another night without music. Because it is improvisation, every performance is different and I enjoy it very much. The film is manipulated by me but it does not work as I intended sometimes and I think that makes the performance richer because then I have to accept the thing happened, or not happened, and try to use the accident. We received very good feedback. Some people say the work is a new kind of art, or the first work that really made the connection of dance and video, etc... The people's reaction made me happy after the hard intensive process and I hope to develop it more in the future.

Sunday, 24 July 2005

INTAKT Interaktionslabor 2

© Paul Verity Smith
I'm wearing an accelerometer on my right wrist. The cable is connected to a transmitter and batteries, and they send the data to a computer.

INTAKT: with sensors
© Johannes Birringer
I dance with myself in the videoprojection that is manipulated by my accelerometer on the right wrist.

INTAKT: film
© Paul Verity Smith
The original film is 10 minutes long for each scene but we choose only 5-10 seconds for the manipulation.

Friday, 22 July 2005

INTAKT Interaktionslabor, Germany

Gottelborn former coal mine, Germany
Internationales Interaktionslabor
18-31 July 2005

Dance and Technology is a new area in dance practice and dance academics. I have been working with Paul Verity Smith since 2002, and this summer we spend two weeks on the site of the former coal mine Gottelborn, Germany. There is a laboratory called INTAKT that is for interactive media, sound, design, digital video,telecommunications and performance.
From my understanding, our team is making a performance. I am an only dancer. But I am two: one in live and one in video projection. I in live can manipulate sound and video image through sensors on my body. but I in live is not only trying to manipulate, I need to be dancing and all the aspects needs to work together as a performance.
At the moment I have three sensors: 2 accelerometers, and an orient sensor. accelerometers can sense the acceleration of my movement and they are on my wrist and shoulder. One for orientation is on my shoulder and can sense which way I'm facing.
It is time-consuming process and I have lots of time to wait while other computer people are setting up or programming something. Working with technology needs very different approach for dancers and that is what I am interested in.
Hope we can create something interesting by the end of these two weeks!

Webcam in the lab


Thursday, 21 July 2005

Working at Sadler's Wells: Zero Degrees

Akram and Sidi Credit Carl Fox ©Carl Fox

Unfortunately I cannot make my living with only dancing, so I work as an usher at Sadler's Wells theatre. Sadler's Wells is a big scale theatre with 1600 seats and has mainly dance performances, from big names like Pina Bausch, William Forsyth to classical ballet companies. Last week, we had Zero Degrees by Akram Kahn and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. Akram is a pioneer who creates an original form of dance as an integration of traditional Indian dance, Kathak, and contemporary dance. Sidi Larbi is one of choreographers/ directors in a physical theatre company, Les Ballets C de la B.
One of good points of working as an usher is that we can get to see a show as part of the work. I was looking forward to seeing this performance because I know both of them are great choreographers and performers although their styles are so different and original. So I was curious what kind of work they can create together. I watched the performance on the first night with lots of expectation, and then I found it so slow and too loose. It was like watching a rehearsal and I could not hold myself for 70 minutes and fell asleep at some point. The choreography looked still its early stage of the development, and I did not like the fact. Although life-size silicon dummies created by Antony Gormley put some special meaning to the performance, I did not get the point of the work. My second watch was totally different experience. The performance by Akram and Sidi Larbi got so much stronger and surer, that was able to convey some thoughts and feelings. Also other reasons are because I read the programme and listened to the talk with them. So I had some idea what they were dealing with already before I watched the performance. For me it was interesting to question if a contemporary dance piece should make sense without any explanation by the creators, or it is ok to justify the work with more explanation. Also I noticed again that how performance quality could affect on the quality of work itself. Even though same people perform, the work looks completely different depending on how they perform. I had to feel that a big production like this is lucky to have many performances. They can improve themselves while they perform. Thinking about myself, a small production has only one or some performances so every performance needs to be the best. Do Akram and Sidi Larbi consider themselves lucky?


Tuesday, 12 July 2005

Taking class at gDA

On a day I don't have any rehearsals, I go to a professional class in the morning. Greenwich Dance Agency (gDA) is the nearest place to take those classes for me so I often go there. It costs £3.80 per class, which is quite reasonable price compared to commercial dance studios like Pinnapple or Dance Works. The classes are from 10.30-12.00 everyday from Monday- Friday, and teachers changes every week although they all teach release-based contemporary dance technique. There is also a live musician. This is almost too good environment for dancers who trained in Japan!
Recently I cannot go to a class so often because I have rehearsals in the morning. But when I go there, I enjoy myself a lot, dancing "dancy" dance, which I don't dance in someone's choreography. We create more original movement for a choreography, I mean. But sometimes I need time to face purely on my body, and review all the routines. Also a class is nice place to see friends. We catch up each other after a class.


リハーサルがない日には朝のプロフェッショナル・クラスを受けにいきます。うちから一番近いのはグリニッジ・ダンス・エージェンシー(gDA)。ひとクラス £3.80 (約760円)。パイナップルスタジオやダンスワークスなんかの営利目的のスタジオと比べるとはるかに良心的なお値段です。クラスは月曜から金曜まで毎朝10時半から12時までで,先生はどの先生もコンテンポラリーのリリーステクニックを教えますが,週ごとに変わります。生伴奏付き。日本でダンストレーニングをしてきた身には大変贅沢な環境です!

Rehearsal with Stephanie Schober

ChangeChange ©Gigi Giannella

Stephanie Schober is a young innovative choreographer who I have been working with for five years. When I met her, she had just graduated from LABAN and had started her career as a choreographer. She is very talented, I think, and works incredibly hard. So she got many great oppotunities these five years like Bonnie Bird New Choreography Award and Artist in Residence at South Bank Centre. This year, we have a touring in England for the first time. At the moment, we are creating a new duet that will be touring with other two old pieces.The premiere is in November, and we started wroking on the duet in May. Normaly we have four hours rehearsal, three days a week. Sometimes, everyday... I would say it is quite a lot. But I know we need that much, and I am sure the work is going to be very interesting, unusual, and completed!



Thursday, 7 July 2005

Yellow Wall Paper project

Yellow Wall Paper
©Gigi Giannella

Yellow Wall Paper is a project that I have been working with a scenographer, Caroline Collinge, who is a friend of mine. Caroline has been inspired by the feminist novel in the 19th century, titled The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. We had a first work-in-progress performance at Battersea Arts Centre last Saturday on 2 July. The photo here is from the performance. Although we performed on a stage this time, we intend to perform in different places, away from theatres. Today, we visited a beautiful Victorian tavern facing right on the Thames in Greenwich, where we will hold a performance on 3 August, as part of the ICKL conference banquet. We had great ideas what and how to do, taking advantage
of the architeture and the situation of a banquet! It is going to be impressive!

友達のセノグラファー(パフォーマンス関係のデザインをする人)キャロラインと,Yello Wall Paperというプロジェクトをしています。先週の土曜日,7月2日にバタシー・アーツセンターという劇場で,まだ創作途中ではありますがお披露目をしました(写真)。今回は舞台上での上演でしたが,今後の希望としては、劇場から離れて,いろいろな建物内でやりたいと思っています。今日はグリニッジはテムズ川沿いのレストランに下見に行っていました。ビクトリア調でとても美しい建物。そこで8月3日にICKLという学会の晩餐会とあわせてパフォーマンスをします。この建物と晩餐会という状況をうまく利用してきっと面白いものができる予感がします!

Wednesday, 6 July 2005

Audition for Carol Brown Dances

Carol Brown is a choreogrpaher who works on installation, technology and site-specific works in collaboration with architects or visual artists most times. I was invited to her audition at Roehampton University where she teaches. It was unusual audition because there were only five people. Normally, we see 50 or 100 people in a awful. The audition was workshop style so I felt I could work and show something properly. We spent three hours dancing sequences given by Carol and improvising based on some tasks. I will know the result in a week or so, but I am trying not to worry about it. I know auditions are not to judge a dancer but it is to choose a dancer for a particular work. Let's see...


キャロル・ブラウンはニュージーランド出身ですがロンドンで活躍する振付家。建築家やビジュアルアーティストとのコラボレーションによりインスタレーションやテクノロジー,サイト・スペシフィック(って日本語でなんて言うのでしょう? どなたか教えてください)といった従来の劇場舞台で上演されるダンスとは異なったダンスを創ります。この振付家には前から興味があったので,偶然出会う機会があったときにちょっと売り込みをしておいたらオーディションに呼んでもらえました。普通オーディションというと50人や100人もの人が来ていてそれだけでうんざりしますが,今日のオーデションはたった5人だけ。ワークショップ形式で,3時間の間に与えられたダンスを踊るほか,キャロルの指示に基づいたインプロを行い,私としても充実して見せれるものは見せたと感じられるオーディションでした。結果は1週間ほどでわかりますが,あまり結果にとらわれないようにしています。オーディションはダンサーとしての能力を見るというものではなく,特定の作品の為に,それにあった人を選ぶということですから。。。

Tuesday, 5 July 2005

Pilates Teacher Training Course

I am starting the Pilates Teacher Training Course with Alan Herdman from this September. He has kindly let me start studying prior to the actual start, so I turn up at the studio occationally for now. Today I reviewed by myself some basic excercises that someone taught me last time. What I like about Pilates is that I feel so much centered after the excersises! It is like meditation.