IJAD BLOG for WEBSITE
During rehearsals. February 2013, whilst working with IJAD on their show about secrets: INFINATE
Quite a day. Met almost all the other dancers. Helena was not there, but she messaged me to ask if I wanted anything brought from Paris. And I replied, ‘just a Frenchman please,’ though I had to just settle for a bottle of white wine in the end.
The whole cast should be together soon. There are just ten days to go and it’s the first day I have really been here due to another project i was working on. Joumana and I have met up a lot though. Our conversations have so excited me, that often they made my feet go fizzy. Now Joumana is concentrating on connections and structure. And I cannot wait to get going again tomorrow.
I went to Pina Bauch tonight. It was simply extraordinary. So pure, so chiming in its joy. So searching, so unafraid, it shows all that is possible. As everyone left the theatre, streaming up the road and chattering high and happy like birds, I thought to myself – she’s illuminated our world tonight. Somehow she illuminates everything. And she slightly changes my life. Her ability to distill. I liked the line after a woman put a chair down – as she stalked off – she said ‘ even ghosts need to sit down.’ And then Dominique, an older dancer standing centre stage helpless trying to reach out for a woman standing opposite him and missing and missing, and a younger man coming up behind her and biting her hair to pull her away and then gently biting her apricot silk dress and pulling and lulling her away from this man left standing still all stuck in time and loss.
Tomorrow turned out to be quite exciting. And Joumana fearlessness, flexibility came flyigng to the fore, as the dramaturg blew the present place of the piece apart. And it was quite wonderful really. I said ‘Don’t worry folks – we’ve got ages and they looked at me. Because actually we have ten days. I gushed something about time not being linear but made up of moments – and today we were faced with a myriad of new awarenesses and moments and not all of them easy! I had to leave an hour early and I wondered what happened for the rest of the day. It was like everest had suddenly been exploded and now it was time to make a new and much better mountain. I might be slightly exaggerating. But I don’t think so. What I loved was that it was agreed that we would re think and reconfigure to make a piece about what secrets was really truly all about. Because its really such a fascinating subject and Joumana understands it so passionately – yet we had understood that this was not really coming through.Yet.
I am hardly in it. That could be because my first full day was yesterday and I have missed a month of rehearsals. I am meant to be on the edge, but when we ran i got quite embarrassed because I was just so on the edge and doing deeply nothing! So we tried some things. Some things that worked, and some that didn’t. But we found things and let ourselves lose some things and it was good.
I’ve never actually been in a piece with so much dancing in. Which sounds mad, but this is such a different genre to what am used to. I find myself bemused by the sheer volume of physicality of the dancers. I on the other hand, am inhabiting the physicality of a mollusc in this piece.Which is fine by me, because I am not really in the mood for dancing right now. I am however being pushed really hard, and its great.
Today is a new day with new thoughts and new possibilities and I am not wearing any knickers. And I’ve just remembered that Shanti is coming in for a costume fitting. oh dear. I am also four hours early for rehearsal which was better than being four minutes late which I actually was until reception explained we were not starting till 2pm. So I am happy here in the red cafe at Rich Mix drinking a red coke and eating a red black mars bar with my red z body of blood and my head and heart full of hope. There is much to do. And learning my lines seems might be a good start. A thought has crossed my mind. When I was leaving rehearsal yesterday I stepped onto a weighing scales by reception. A rare thing. I noted that I weigh 20 kilograms more than 20 years ago when I considered myself to be very overweight. Only now I actually am I couldn’t seem to care less. Funny that. Yet I wonder about the weight gain. Could it be the things I put into the hole on the front of my head? I’m going to think about it while I get another coke.
Happy day to you. Its Tuesday, the day of grace. I always remember that, mostly because I was born on Tuesday and I inhabit a graceful art form, even though I bump into things alot.
Favourite moment of yesterday.: Alice, suddenly falling to the floor to run on her side lying down. Which looked amazing till she showed us her hip, for which no plasters was big enough. I wonder how it is today. And I got told off for being too long. But going to the loo in a crinoline takes time. The dress is by the costume designer Shanti Freed. Chiffon pockets all over the skirt in which to store secrets.
We went to perform in Switzerland. It was as clear and illuminated and as wonderful as this picture I took of Lake Garda on our last morning there. The cast were all full of joy I remember it and them with great fondness. Also Joumana too. Such fun, such strength, such an amazing woman. It’s such a perfect looking place. It’s almost as if one tap of a tiny hammer on the scene in front of you and it might shatter and the blue fall away.