'adam-mah' is an interactive performance experience exploring the development of personal identity, relationship and territoriality.
Summary: Through the lens of personal identity, territoriality and a changing habitat, 'adam-mah' explores the symbiosis of human and nature and our creative and destructive potentials. The piece is based on an intimate and interactive audience-performer relationship.
Facts: Audiences are standing and sitting around the 25' x 8' large performance area, forming a tight barrier, a membrane, around the two nuclei, the performers. The audience is an integral part of the visual and sensory landscape, and subsequently shapes the performance and influence the storyline. The experience is quite personal. Throughout the piece we involve audience members in our actions, experimenting with their willingness to follow or oppose our instructions, giving them unique viewpoints, litterally leading them by the hand, asking them to step over us, and participate in our experiment in a multitude of ways. We attempt a connection with each individual (but there is no pressure! We know that not all audience members like to become active).
'adam-mah' is currently a work in progress. When completed, it will be about 50 minutes long and presented in combination with an audience discussion as part of the performance experience. It will be premiered at the SARUS Festival for Site-specific & Experimental Art in Wilmington, NC, August 20-23rd, 2015. The piece will become one of my major touring pieces that enjoy a long life after their initial creation and tour all over the US and to Europe. A Berlin/Germany premiere, for example, is scheduled for December 2015 at the Novilla Cultural Center. In the Winter/Spring of 2016 performances of 'adam-mah' will take place at Salem College, NC. We are also invited to perform it at Boom Festival in Charlotte in April of 2016. Info on further upcoming performances will be on my website under 'calendar'.
How 'adam-mah' developed: 'adam-mah' is currently a work in progress. It has been performed several times along the way and it has been very successful in all of its different stages. It started out in December of 2014 at Salem College: a movement study about the traces we leave behind, inevitably and intentionally, turned into a 12 minute improvisational duet. In April I developed that idea into a 30 minute performance for 6 dancers which was performed by the Auburn University dance company.
I loved the complexity and the sense of paralellity of time and interaction of this six-dancer version, and I began to condense all the many sub storylines, layering dimensions over top of each other and adding audience interaction. The piece found its way back to a duet format. This 30 minute duet was performed at the Moving Poets 6/15 Showcase in Charlotte, NC in April 2015. The video you can view here shows clips from that performance.
Philosophy and artistic goals: Developing the audience interactive part is a complicated and very important part. Performing the work throughout the stages of its development has shed much light on where I want to go with it. My vision is to create a very special experience for audiences and performers, allowing for both to catch a glimpse of each others worlds. I encourage audiences to allow this performance to become something real, to accept it not as an imagined, hypothetical presentation, something to consume, but rather as a jointly created and experienced reality that exists in and between physical and intellectual realms, addressing something in us that is an integral part of what it means to be human.
Fine-tuning our (audiences and performers) sensitivity to space, time and our shared actuality we become articulate subjects. I want 'adam-mah' to help people become more acutely aware of the three-dimensionality of the living body, the creativity within us and the two-way sharing that takes place. The Creative Loafing newspaper in Charlotte, NC describes 'adam-mah' as an 'immersive piece; elemental art you could see, hear, touch and smell'. This immersiveness is important to me; creating a comprehensive, three- dimensional, experience for the audience is a key aspect of the soul of the piece.
I believe that 'adam-mah' is an opportunity for people to become aware of and bridge internal and external barriers. It encourages us to contemplate and discuss the physical and metaphysical realities of life and our relationship to these intrinsic and extrinsic environments. 'adam-mah' is a sensory experience that blurs the lines between performers and audiences, between the individual and the group.
A really short bit about the title: 'adam-mah' is a word play on the combination of the meanings of the individual components 'adam' and 'mah'. The word 'mah' means 'mother', 'what?', and 'red', or 'red as the earth'; adam is 'man', 'first man' and 'humanity'; a