OK so this post is a little overdue….
Dancing at the Brighton Fringe was a real pleasure, and came right in the middle of Hidden Door Festival and friend’s weddings, so although it was tremendous I am only just writing about it now.
Gordon Raeburn and I often work together. I feel comfortable when working with him, and feel aware of what he and I can do, and how our bodies work well together. And despite our comfort in working together, we still challenge each other. He moves beautifully, and is strong, however also has a humorous side to his creating and often brings a light hearted approach to the work.
Gordon is part of Swallowsfeet Dance Collective. They work together to put on Swallowsfeet, a much needed festival of contemporary dance. Swallowsfeet has grown from strength to strength, and what started out friends working together to create and showcase work now receives a massive amount of applications from all across the work from dancers and makers alike wishing to be part of their weekend long festival for Independent Dance.
Swallowsfeet not only run a festival, but they also run an evening of contemporary dance for Brighton Fringe. For this, Gordon and I created a new duet, work-in-progress exploring old and new ideas. It was great to be able to showcase the work we do out with Scotland (a first!).
But for me, what was so great was the opportunity to meet similar artists and to watch the work that they do. The evening had a real variety to it, and felt nourishing for me, to watch such talented and inspiring works.
There was even one all about MAPS, which was incredibly poignant for me while making work all about ordnance survey maps and borders. I could see similarities in what we were inspired by, however our works are incredibly different. I loved her piece! Her spoken word really touched me, and the dancer moved beautiful across the stage with us all sat around him. This worked incredibly well. And I enjoyed the changing of stage arrangement with great purpose. It felt right.
There was also work from Jessica Miller, Swallowsfeet founder, in the form of an installation, where she moved gracefully on stage holding positions as the audience filtered in. I loved this. It meant the evening started straight away. It was apparent the audience enjoyed it to.
The Natasha’s project looks at human trafficking and shows 5 women on stage playing around and discussing how beautiful the flowers are. They are the flowers, and are sold and shared for their beauty. This was moving and I was amazed that some parts were almost funny. It is great to be able to bring humour into such a dark topic.
Every member of Swallowsfeet shared works, whether in them or not, and they can be found here. They were welcoming, and I was impressed at not only what they manage to put on together, but of the quality of work made by all of them. It is so wonderful for artists to have opportunity to create and show work. Having an opportunity to share can often provide stimulus for creation and the more opportunities we can get of this the better.
A massive thanks to Swallowsfeet for having me, and to Gordon for inviting me to work with him on this. It was an honour and pleasure to be there in sunny Brighton.