Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Concept and process

This work layered realities and illusions around cultural identity and trauma presented metaphorically through the concept of a magic show. The 'magic box' is a(n absent) symbol of the illusory but real manifestations of cultural categorisation, its limitations, naturalist assumptions, violence and trickery for 3 individuals of varying cultural affiliation in an NZ context. This includes the ever-present confines of sexuality, gender and ethnicity. It interweaves parody and the seriousness of these realities and constructions. Its attempts to refer also to the 'box' of dance and theatre representation of identity and location, and discover a 'magic' fire inside creative de/construction of human identity and questioning space, which allows potential for a playful and honest freedom, complexity and authenticity of interweaved personal experience. The impacts of colonisation, migration/dislocation, sex/gender inequality and the vulnerability lying therein are layered across one another to allude to both an abundance of creative terrain as well as potential for conflict and misunderstanding. The use of video projections, spoken text, objects and sound helped the dance work with these layered realities/illusions. In between many other projects we worked on this process for 6 months part time. Although partially collaborative the choreographer was aware of her role in the process of colonisation, and therefore asked her 2 dancers to respond to this theme in their own separate works to help contribute to a challenging dialogue which aims to interrogate their own identity and perspective for further authenticity and integrity. Min Kyoung Lee chose to do this, whereas Paul Young chose to contribute his ideas and perspective to the original work rather than make a separate piece. I thank both these dancers for their brave and intelligent contributions and respect their decisions within this process. It is a work in development which reflects the spirit of the piece. It is my hope for this match box to enliven, if not enlighten dance, theatre and cultural artistic practice.

Late Night Choreographers 04 produced by Alexa Wilson

Reviews of work online

Magic Box (Best of Dance 04)- http://www.listener.co.nz/issue/3372/artsbooks/3092/the_butterfly_effect.html;jsessionid=2AA9C6FB4390815EB2BBD5E20081494E

Magic Box (LNC 04)- http://www.thelistener.co.nz/issue/3370/artsbooks/3042/luminous_even_in_darkness,1.html;jsessionid=D8A3F5B9F084FEDD5CF115FEAD2CF6F3