when our papermoons fall apart

commission for Irvine Valley College Dance Department, Winter 2022

DIRECTION | Yasmine Lindskog

CHOREOGRAPHY | Yasmine Lindskog in collaboration with the dancers

PERFORMANCE | Moriah Byrne, Sabrina Campaña, Kazuma Inoue, Amy Lin, Karess Nguyen, Mia Vasquez

LIGHTING | Crystal Shomph

COSTUMES | Christina Perez

MUSIC | Mika Vainio, Guy Lombardo & His Royal Canadians, Chubby Wolf, CoH, The Chordettes, Pan Sonic, Le Chour Voyageur & Alexis Duffaure, The Field Recordings, Akira Rabelais.

SOUND DESIGN |Yasmine Lindskog

VIDEOGRAPHY | Desiree Stafford from That's A Wrap Videography

PHOTOGRAPHY | Skye Schmidt

"No kind of being exists in isolation. We bring each other into being." -Eben Kirkseyn

"Listen to the sound of the earth turning." - Yoko Ono

"The relief of giving into destruction." - Franz Kafka

"You can never put it back together as it was." - Haruki Murakami

Over 3 days, or about 20 hours, I developed this new work in collaboration with the dancers.

The first day was spent in full play mode. We took a trip to the theater’s prop room and everybody grabbed 3-5 props to bring back to the studio. With 30+ props we began diving into imaginative worlds, playing, questioning, probing, discussing, and sharing. We talked, shared references, unfolded a plethora ideas, engaged in task-based work, and played with some phrasework. These students were game through every proposition, and they were not afraid to go beyond their borders. They dived deeeeeeep.

After day 1, I went back home to my friend’s γιαγιά (grandmother in greek) house and began shaping the direction of the piece. With an unexpected power outage, I found myself in her γιαγιά‘s kitchen with a headlamp and rainbow colored sticky notes scattered across every surface. Music options were playing in the background spanning experimental electronic music to Finnish folk music to Mr. Sandman by The Chordettes. Eventually, I built some sort of logic and had a sketch of a structure to bring back for day two.

Day two was a day of puzzling the pieces together, building sections, letting some sections exist with more space, more spontaneity, while others had a need for specificity and precision. It was a day of taking away props that didn’t belong and giving more meaning to what stayed. Attentive and ready, the dancers followed the labyrinth I pulled them down and back out. It was exciting to begin to see the shape of the piece. There were holes, but there was a clear form. We were creating our own worlds. Day two, was another headlamp night, as the power still had not returned. However, this night was more focused on details, overall story arches, and where we wanted to arrive to in the end. 

Day three, our last physical day together in the studio. We spent the day developing our maps, our journeys inside the trajectory of the work, developing our character and their evolution, deepening the relationships between each other, and finding the details, the transitions, the timing. It was the final day together to weave the final pieces together. I was proud of this group of dancers and where we arrived in the final hour of our time together. We also had several exchanges online and it was exciting to see how the piece evolved from a distance.

What was the work about? Well, it was an amalgamation of many different themes, touching on the human condition, this world we’ve built, we are living in; time; our inevitable interconnectedness; the absurd, the excess, and the naked; The collective v. the individual; entanglements; when does it become too much; the persistant search for more; drawing lines, interesecting lines, drawing lines over others; the way we seize life and it seizes us; a returning to center, our core, to the collective. Situated in a surreal and dreamlike environment, the dancers arrive and fall into a myriad of landscapes as they become engulfed in the labyrinth of humanity. In the excess they find their way to deconstruct, to unfurl, in order to return back to a moment of simplicity, of breath, of togetherness. An ode to the nuance and colors of being human.


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