Saturday, March 7, 2009

Stuck Inside on a Beautiful Day

Well, I'm stuck inside at work, so might as well update my little log of the creative experience that is life...

I'm in the process of creating two new (and slightly ambitious) works. Wish me luck.

The first piece (which I hope to perform at Open Marley Night on May 30th) is based on Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher and inspired originally by the Usher Waltz by Koshkin (a very cool piece of guitar music, inspired by the same piece of literature mentioned previously). I have realized that I really like working from literature (it's probably my most natural source of inspiration), and I am always excited when I find a piece of music that comes from literature (The Magic Theater---based on Hesse's Steppenwolf---comes to mind...I must choreograph this piece!).

Anyhow, there have been a total of zero rehearsals so far, but I've done some thinking and writing, which always comes first with me anyways. I've also listened to a recording of the music while soaking in the tub...very helpful. I haven't really danced yet, so I'm not sure what the movement will look like, but I already have formed a structure in my mind.

If you are unfamiliar with the story click:

And the music:

Ideas I have so far: There are three characters (Usher, Narrator, Sister). Usher is the guitarist\music, so the musician must be somehow integrated into the performance. The music is a waltz and the era of the piece makes it sensible to play on the classic idiom of a waltz partner dance. I might have books all over the stage...

Problems I'm working on: I don't want to re-tell the story; what is the point of creating the dance if it doesn't go beyond what already exists. In the story the narrator is an observer; he relates with Usher, but not with the sister, however in my dance Usher is not a dancer and the sister and narrator are, so most of the interactions have to happen between the narrator and the sister.

Structural Ideas: The piece begins and ends with a solo by the narrator. The piece begins with music, but ends in silence. The pas de deaux between the Narrator and the Sister, represent the horror that the narrator feels in the presence of the sister. The music represents the character of Usher and the dancers interface with the musician. The dance follows the structure of the music (which means I have to figure out how the music follows the structure of the narrative...).

That's where I'm at. I hope to start rehearsing (with Sara! Yay!) within the next couple of weeks.

Coming soon...lots of rambling about Pablo Neruda.

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