Archives for posts with tag: contemporary dance

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I’ve always been fascinated by the body: its structure, shapes and movement. My new exhibition, Back to Black, at Paddock Studios Stable Gallery in Lewes, explores this obsession in black and white. Made using charcoal and ink, the pieces range from small sketches to life-size drawings, and from more realistic life drawings to looser, abstracted approaches to movement.

Stable Gallery, Paddock Art Studios
Paddock Lane Lewes BN7 1TW
17 August – 1 September

Wed-Sat 10am-6.30pm Sun 11-6pm (closed Mondays & Tuesdays)

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Seven years ago I joined a contemporary dance company in Brighton, newly established. Three Score Dance Company was created to offer contemporary dance opportunities for women and men aged 60+. From merely watching dance theatre I started using my body. Three Score Co has a brilliant artistic director, Jason Keenan-Smith, and we’ve worked with some great choreographers to make performances .

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I made some sketches of the other dancers when not actually involved. Of course there’s a great legacy of dance art: Manet, Degas, Matisse, Toulouse-Lautrec, Picasso… aside from the whole world of non-Western art. But while not daring to include myself in that list, I started to make drawings of dance.

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Then I started to work the other way round: dancing the drawing. I was intrigued by what marks might result if an artist would dance over and on paper or canvas, trailing charcoal or paint. So over large sheets of paper I would move and (sort-of) dance with charcoal in both hands, tracing my movements. The results were intriguing, and formed a basis for building on; life-size figures in motion. It would be a real achievement to make a coherent performance from it, but it’s early days yet.

Back to Black:
Michael Munday Drawings

Stable Gallery, Paddock Art Studios
Paddock Lane Lewes BN7 1TW
17 August – 1 September

Wed-Sat 10am-6.30pm Sun 11-6pm (closed Mondays & Tuesdays)

The Lewes Artwave Festival

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Dome

The drugs are working: a breakfast of Asacol, Prednisolone and Co-Codamol. Consequently I’m here, on the big stage of Brighton’s Dome Concert Hall, built by the Prince Regent in 1805: otherwise I’d be languishing in bed feeling miserable. Overhead are the huge scalloped cut-outs of the circular layered ceiling – the place is gorgeous but not fancy Art Deco – with modern lighting gantries hanging (though unlit now). Facing me are 1700 empty seats, but we won’t be performing here – we’ll be in the black-box Studio theatre next door. Jason, our rehearsals director, and now – at last! – our choreographer, is working up a new dance piece – contemporary dance, dance-theatre, ‘modern’ dance, some calls it. The women rule this one. We men (5 of us) scuttle around, hiding behind the 13 female bodies, till we’re revealed, snaking geometrically round the stage, heads down. We don’t know where this is going, yet…

What I do know is that I have to rush around onstage, trying to get attention, becoming increasingly desperate, until, humiliated, I strip down and stand alone in my underpants…

 

 

dancing men

Oi!  Men!  What is it about you and dancing? (Sorry – I’m addressing too broad an age range here. Let’s narrow it down). You guys – yes, you over 60: you went to the Palais, the Odeon, the Locarno, the Lyceum, the Marquee, the Flamingo, the Twisted Wheel, or wherever, didn’t you? Did you dance to Otis Redding, Georgie Fame, Zoot Money, The Animals, the Rolling Stones, Geno Washington, and to Tamla Motown, Blue Beat, rocksteady? Then in the late Sixties, to psychedelic stuff by Traffic, Floyd, Arthur Brown? Come on – you know you did! In that willowy, hair-swirling, floppyflared style that we called ‘idiot dancing’? Ah – there’s the rub! It’s the ‘idiot dancer’ memory, isn’t it? I sympathise.

(The hard sell: a new 10-week Contemporary Dance course in Lewes for men and women aged 60 and over. Contemporary dance technique and creative exercise. No prior dance experience is necessary; suitable for all abilities, over 60. Mondays, 5.45pm-7.15pm. 23 September – 2 December)

Venue: Cliffe Hall, Cliffe High St, Lewes.
Contact Lauren at South East Dance: 01273 696844 or lauren.proto@southeastdance.org.uk

http://www.southeastdance.org.uk
http://www.threescoredance.co.uk