01 Sep ‘Where is your pleasure?’ – Andrew Morrish & Humphrey Bower Collaborations 2
Recently, the inimitable Andrew Morrish was in town to co-present Collaborations 2 – Text / Movement / Improvisation / Script professional workshops and showings for STRUT Dance. Morrish collaborated with renowned WA Actor/Director Humphrey Bower to explore a diverse set of relationships between movement and text. We asked visiting artist and STRUT member dancer Eliza Sanders to report back on her experience.
Collaborations 2 was just part of STRUT Dance’s year round program of professional workshops, providing exceptional opportunities to independent, professional Contemporary dancers from across Australia. View their remaining 2017 Master Workshops program here.
STRUT DANCE COLLABORATIONS 2 WITH ANDREW MORRISH AND HUMPREY BOWER – DAYS 6 TO 11
Reflecting on the two weeks with Andrew and Humphrey, I’m feeling pretty jealous of my past self. In the second part of the workshop, Andrew and Humphrey allowed the participants to facilitate their own investigations a fair bit more. Consequently, the sense of collaboration and shared experience with the group was rich. Each of our interests, within the work, began to emerge and it was curious to see how many ways the content could be interpreted. While some of us stayed quite open to exploring new things each day others dedicated their time to
Each of our interests, within the work, began to emerge and it was curious to see how many ways the content could be interpreted. While some of us stayed quite open to exploring new things each day others dedicated their time to investigating different ways to work with a specific piece of text. The focus shifted to preparing for the showings which influenced the dynamic of the work. I was interested in observing my own and others response to knowing we would have an audience who were not ‘in
The focus shifted to preparing for the showings which influenced the dynamic of the work. I was interested in observing my own, and others, response to knowing we would have an audience who were not ‘in on the process’. The simple information and tools Andrew had shared with us gave us a shared understanding and appreciation for different approaches to generating content. I did feel a little sad to not spend as much time working directly with Andrew and observing his improvisations with Humphrey. I think the focus towards an outcome detracted from the possibilities of simply exploring in some ways.
Having said that, the experience of having an audience did inform a very different understanding of the work for me. Naturally, my decisions and attentions were altered by having new eyes observing us, which revealed some interesting responses. I was super surprised and excited by how many people rocked up to observe. As someone who is constantly travelling, it gave me a clear indication that Perth is a city with a really supportive and interested dance scene.
Andrew and Humphrey started off the night with an improvisation that directly referenced the space and the people in it. Generating an environment that was open and welcoming. For my piece, I had decided to spread the audience throughout the space – which turned out to be quite a challenge considering how many bodies were there! I could not ignore the intimate presence of the spectators and I loved having them so close – to respond to and work around.
I had to leave before the final day and second showing and I’m a little disappointed I did not get a chance to wrap up the experience with the group. It would have been excellent to have another day in Perth after the showings, to discuss what happened for each of us throughout the process. I headed back to Canberra feeling super inspired with all kinds of random nonsensical words popping into my mind at an alarming rate. I’m looking forward to seeing how the information translates into my ongoing practice and hope I get another chance to revisit the work with Andrew, Humphrey and the other participants in some capacity.
Some of my favourite notes from the two weeks …
‘Cockfight, salamander, iguana … I meant to say piranha’
‘I reveal myself in every decision I make. My hierarchies reveal themselves’
‘Interruption creates poetry’
‘How do you think it is going to end?’
‘Where is your pleasure?’
‘Quickness beyond thinking is always exciting’
‘beginning, middle, end = Notice, add, observe’
Thanks to STRUT Dance.
– Eliza Sanders
Eliza Sanders is a dancer and creator originally from Canberra, Australia. She graduated from The New Zealand School of Dance in 2014. Upon graduation Eliza launched House of Sand with her brother Charles: a director, dramaturge and producer based in Sydney. Eliza has created 4 full-length works for House of Sand which won ‘Most Promising Emerging Company’ at the NZFringeAwards2016. Her solo shows Pedal and Castles have toured Australia and New Zealand. Eliza’s short film M.G.W.H premiered at the F.O.R.M festival in Vancouver Canada in 2016. Eliza has been commissioned to create works on The New Zealand School of Dance, Footnote Dance Company NZ and the Quantum Leap Youth Dance Ensemble in 2017. She will be returning to Transformation Dance Festival Montreal as an invited international artist in 2017 and is a Key artists on the Make a Move Program which works with primary teachers to teach dance for the Australia National Curriculum.
Find out more about Eliza and House of Sand at houseofsand.org