my name is Kylie Ann Smith and I have been working on a project called 'Ruckus' through the Waleslab initiative with NTW
A bit about me and my work....
I am a cardiff born and bred choreographer/director/performer. My work is quirky, eclectic and usually involves dark humor. I am interested in fusing different dance genres and art forms in my work and love to collaborate with people who are open-minded and willing to take risks, playful, and can bring their own unique skills to the project. My ideas are usually quite visual and come from a design angle as well as being theatrical and have some sort of engagement /interaction with the audience.
I am a core momeber of Kitsch & Sync Collective which has been set up by myself, Kim Noble and Rosalind Brooks to act as an umbrella for like-minded artists to work on similar creative projects to this. I want to make work that is accessible to non-dance and theatre audiences but is also challenging and has artistic flare.
Check out our facebook page http://www.facebook.com/kitschnsynccollective as we have a new full length show coming up, inspired by film noir, vintage fashion trends and electro-swing music, called
'Kitsch & Sync Collective : Private Eye Detective'in Chapter 20th and 21st July
So, back to this project.
I was inspired by the Lucha Libra masks displayed in the shop window next to the NTW office. I wanted to explore the ‘masks’ we hide behind and the façade that we chose to portray, human fragility and vulnerability, through physicality, character mask work and devised/found text.
I hand picked 4 very talented and unique performers;
to act as tag-teams, as i thought there would be more scope for interesting choreographic possibilities and partner contact work (fighting!)
All the performers have ballet experience, specifically in pointe work and we have collaborated on projects together in the past and so I thought they would make a great creative team. I would act as choreographer but may also have a smaller role in the piece (as a referee or half-time score card girl!?)
So, first things first, we needed to learn how to wrestle! And who better to ask than the super talented, super-human, fight choreographer Kevin Mc Curdy! Click here for a short clip from the workshop- Kim Versus Kev
He taught us some of the basics, we learnt some of the lingo, took a bit of a battering (Rosalind chipped a tooth!?) and we were all then geared up for our residency in West Wales - Penpynfach studios. This is Laura hanging out after a hard days training, mucking in cooking for the masses in out lovely cottage...
The residency- Warm ups
Everyday we got up, ate a healthy breakfast, got in Angharad's camper van (the fun bus) and drove to the dance studio. We would start the day with some stretching, a contemporary dance class, a ballet barre and pointe class and some circuit and kick-boxing training just to kill us off at the end! Some days we would throw in a beyonce style work-out, just to shake things up a bit. We have decided to call beyonce-cize.
(Maybe it will catch on and be the new Zumba!?)
In the afternoons we would concentrate on devising material and character work and every night we would watch a film together that would then inspire and influence the work the next day. We watched 'The Wrestler', 'The Fighter', 'Fight Club', 'Nacho Libre' and 'Black Swan'. (don't bother with Nacho Libre by the way!)
Characters started to form, the work started to shift less about Mexican wrestling and more about a family business, sibling rivalry, greed, addiction, competition and the parrallels between fighting and dancing..
(don't want to give too much away for now!) but here are a few rehearsal shots of some of the characters.
Will hopefully be taking the project further, I am in the process of looking for suitable sites as i want to make it site specific with a bit of audience interaction too...watch this space...
Kim Noble- a.k.a STACEY (The Strut) MCQUEEN
Failed backing dancer, now gym fitness instructor and score card ring girl (part-time gym cleaner)
Below: The Payne sisters in training.
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