Last Friday, I spent the day inhabiting dance-maker Amy Voris’ studio space. It was a beautiful and strange place tucked away in the side of Manchester city. It was part of ‘Accumulations’, a project Amy co-creates that welcomes ephemeral forms of art, and invites unpolished, uncertain and experimental processes.
The floorboards sung out as soon as I danced on them. I read a book about ‘ways of knowing in dance and art’. It was a play-space to ask myself as honest questions as I could.
How am I seen? How am I heard? How do others make meaning of me that challenges me? If I can’t enter into dialogue with how others see or hear me, then I feel invisible and silent. At the moment I feel I have to confront that. Because it’s the door that leads me into more depth and empathy with others eventually. So I play with surface until I can break in deeper.
The many characters and images I play with in social interactions… One of them is a small Chinese woman who pretends she is not there. I tried to rewrite the lyrics of bad love songs. And speak English and Chinese thoughts until feeling pours back into my voice, and fill the rest of my body with intention to move through space. The attack and delay of the tongue and the breath as a drone pushing in time, the drop of the belly into its natural passions and the spine snaking its way through its own asymmetric native language.
I’m taking this research back into MmmBop & Other Love Songs, collaborations with other artists, and my somatic and cross-disciplinary facilitation projects.
Grateful to Amy Voris for her openness to support my research… find her at Amyvoris.com