I’ve changed my heavy shoes for lovely light ones
In June of 1940 Jean Paul Sartre became a prisoner of war. For three weeks Simone De Beauvoir had no news of him. Finally on 11 July she received a note written in pencil confirming he was alive, but heard nothing more til mid October. As part of Dance Anywhere I am making a video dance piece in Leipzig that will shown on the sails of a boat in a harbour in Barcelona and then live streamed back to me in Leipzig. The work is about distance, silence, fear, balance; and how we deal with adversity. The title is a line from the last existing letter that De Beauvoir wrote to Sartre 14 March 1941 before he returned to Paris a free man at the end of the month.
Inspired by life in Britain, this piece brings the ancient world and modern society together as it explores the role of women and motherhood. The back drop is Cader Idris (chair of the giant) which we hear of in the tales of King Arthur. Heavily inflenced by tradtional Indian dance, the choreography is based partly on the age old Welsh tradition of making bread from seaweed (bara lafwr or bara lawr) and partly on a poem by an Irish poet in which he compares his mom to a chair. She is always there for everyone else, even when she’d like to return to her previous life as a tree in the forrest.
Iranian Amir Kalhor plays an original modern composition on the ancient Perisan instrument, tar, signifying the woman’s inner voice. At first this is loudest, but as life continues, other sounds drown this voice out. These “other“ sounds are the original modern day sounds from the Cader Idris footage and from an experimental piece by the Welsh band Stylus (Ochre Records) that was produced from live sound recorded at the last seaweed collecting hut in Pembrokeshire.
We all have our public and private personas. Which ones are the true us? Can we every really be ourselves? Can we ever escape who we are? How can one progress past our public persona and reach the private one? Who do we trust enough to allow them to see the completely relaxed and open version of ourselves? Set to the poem by the Persian poet Rumi, these „selves“ are revealed.