Trailer of The Lipstick from a works-in-progress showing, New Orleans 2016
Choreography - Meryl Murman
Musical Composition and performance - Rebecca Crenshaw
Performed by Calvin Rowe, Phillip Rush, Jake Harkey, Cameron Mitchell-Ware
Trailer by Fat Happy Media
Cinematography - Paavo Hanninen and Andrew Larimer
*For complete documentation of the work please contact Meryl Murman
Six individuals test the limits of their comfort zones and their bodies through rigorous athleticism and aggressive sensuality to confront and contest systems of assimilation and integration. Armed with only a bullet of red lipstick, they transgress borders, binaries and the complex relationship between identity and geography. Daring, discomfiting and darkly hilarious, The Lipstick, presents mystic possibilities of cosmetic transformation while dancing the fine line between what is sacred and profane. It recognizes how strong the desire to belong is and how potentially dangerous that can be.
Development on the project began in January of 2015 through Dancing Grounds AIR residency as a personal exploration of my roots, and quickly evolved to encompass further research into human rights in transition and human law in translation with particular focus on migration, alienation, assimilation, displacement and queer identity. Research support and the opportunity to publish about the work came via the Moise A. Khayrallah Center for Lebanese Diaspora Studies at North Carolina State University, and through the International Colloquium for French and Francophone Studies held in Baton Rouge where sections of the piece were presented as part of a panel on Dance and Phenomenology curated by Felicia McCarren.
A very special thanks to all who contributed to this process. Especially David Llorca, Gregory Dorado, Samantha Ernst, Alan Perez, Eric Namaky, Julian Martinez, Laura Stein, Kira Matica, Ramzi Hibri, Caroline Aubry, Joelle Aubry, Sarah Zanolli, Trey Chandler, Christian Hardy, Scott McKibben, Durado Brooks, Dominique Saulet, Ann Glaviano, Catapult, Live Oak Dance, and Dancing Grounds.