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So I’m gonna talk this evening about the four projects that I did, that I premiered, performed in as a dancer, between 2008 and 2010. And I’m gonna ask myself four questions about each of the pieces and I will tell you those questions as I ask them.

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The first question that I ask myself is: What senses do I use the most in this performance? And when I talk about senses, I’m talking about the five senses that, the basic…

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And that, but also about synaesthesia, about senses that emerge from combinations of experience. I stretch the meaning of the word a bit.

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The second question I ask myself is: How does the socio-economic, cultural, political ecosystem of this piece relate to its surrounding socio-eco-culti-political environment? So the inner workings to the outer workings.

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The third question I ask myself is: If the environment of this piece were determined by my senses, what would it be? What would it look like?

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And the last question is: If my body is a product of the senses I use in this performance, what would my body look like? What would I be?

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The first piece I’m gonna talk about is the… I do this chronologically, the first one is the first one.

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This piece by ZOO & Thomas Hauert, called Accords. There are eight people in the piece, and there is a backdrop with slits in it, that we come in and out of. And there is some waiting in the piece for… listening while the other people are performing, you can’t see them.

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The sense that I remember most strongly, especially in those situations, is of musicality. This sense of following music.

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But in fact, in the actual dancing of the piece, you have to be very careful with your own musicality, because the piece is based on improvised unison. So you’re always being led or following someone else. And even though we studied the music together, you never know really what someone else is hearing and you have to able to drop that musicality very fast.

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Duet with Samantha.

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And this is the one section of the piece where the unison is driven from the side, mostly.

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And there’s the sense of tangible space, of space that has… the space between the bodies being full. Between my body and hers. And texture somehow.

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Sam would always say: ‘It’s — not too pretty this time, Chrysa.’ Here’s the (…).

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I think, a sort by-product sense of this piece was a sense of my own aging, my body doing that thing.

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I actually, I eventually left the piece, because I felt that there was a potential for virtuosity, physical (…), and I’ve never been particularly (…), but especially not going that direction now.

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Because you’re always following the person in front of you, there is the feeling that the front part of the body is sticking to another person and that the back part of the body is pulling the back part, the back, the back part, your back of the body, the back surface, the sides is pulling.

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Also a sense of character. Because I knew these people very well and I had a feeling of who was doing what and what they were somehow thinking or feeling.

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In terms of the kunsty-politic of this piece… During the course, well, after the premiere actually, shortly after the premiere the funding that ZOO had had for a long time was cut to the point that we knew we wouldn’t be able to work the way that we had been working. And I had decided to leave anyway. Martin was going. So there were big changes coming. But this, the thing about the…

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The change of support… I think that there was an effect on the performance, somehow we felt that the… What we had thought was understood as valuable in what we were doing, was less understood than we had thought.

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And it just… I think it affected us in that suddenly our principles became very important, and sort of holding to the integrity of the material and the processes was even more… we were self-consciously urgent about those principles.

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The environment that the piece would be if my senses determined it, it’s kind of like a big, black Frisbee. A really big, just… moving… Or like a, like one of those electron spinners or something, but not so scary. Very dark inside and with some light sort of coming through.

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And my body… I have the feeling, because the front body was so affected… I don’t…

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The front of the body is like magnetic filings that just take up whatever form is imposed on them. And the back of the body is kind of like tar, with hair, or like maybe food or drool stuck in it. And sometimes the back tar kind of slips around to the front and the filings get stuck in it.

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So the next piece that I premiered was with Mette Ingvartsen, called Giant City.

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Mette introduced the loops to me a little bit, a practice she has been working on a long time. And she showed me the principles. I learned them from imitating her. And then I joined the group.

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Transforming loops, I think you’ve heard a lot about it maybe [earlier this evening].

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So for me, the strongest or most remarkable sense experience - I think because it was new to me - was that I had to work a lot with the sense of duration. Because the…

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Although there is a lot of rhythm in the loops themselves, the rhythm changes and then time changes, and it’s very hard to keep track of numbers or amounts. So you kind of have you think in longer periods, longer arcs of time.

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A strong sense of tangible space. A sort of by-product of this piece was that what had been something that kind of happened since (…) when I was working, became something that I could almost click on and off, in terms of feeling space… feeling that I was moved by space, or that space was moving me.

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Also the touch, both the imaginary touch and the touch within the body, a sense of texture and tone. You had to keep track of what, of where the tension was moving.

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There is a very sort of subtle and unreliable sense in a way of character or gesture, that you sort of pass through and you recognize that you’re in. You’re in some thing that could be an imaginary relationship but you can’t really stay there because the loop transforms.

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So maybe it’s more a sense of transformation of a single character.

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I often had the feeling that my body was very big and filled out the whole space. (…) Or someone else’s would come to me, they never really met in the middle for some reason.

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So, the environment of the piece in relation to the socio-political, cultural kind of environment… larger environment.

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One of the things that I felt was that, because Mette is a young artist who’s produced a lot of work and did a lot of by-products also from her work, there is a kind of romanticism and scepticism that people approach the work with.

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Asking themselves: Is this the right direction? Should I go this way? Who? What’s the thing? What’s this person got that I don’t have? Or that I need or… Which I think happens, you know, in general. I think particularly with younger artists.

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And interestingly - let’s talk about her while she’s here… that’s the job, that’s what I’m doing.

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I don’t feel that Mette is building a vertical structure, and so that feeling never really entered into the group, that feeling that there is a momentum that goes up. It’s more lateral.

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It’s more like some kind of problem in another place that we know about but don’t really need to deal with. Like dead bodies in another city or something. Just hope it doesn’t come too close.

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The environment is quite thick, liquid. Also with sort of floating walls, that somehow, every once in a while interrupt.

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The audience is on all four sides. So often - I think this is why, I’m not sure why - often it would happen that they would start to move with you, and you had to be very careful not to get caught in their rhythm, or they would fuck the loop up, holding you there too much.

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So this feeling that sometimes the viscosity of the space would spill out into the audience and surface, hit them.

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And then, there is also, and I think it has to do with the kinaesthetic, that people would get involved in the physicality and fall asleep.

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So you had those two kinds of sleepers. People who are watching really hard and they’re trying to stay awake and then just… that sort of awful, hard sleep, that really grumpy sleeping.

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And then there’s other people, they’re watching and they go with and then just… That’s absolutely… for you it’s a very physical experience to be close to people who are sleeping while my attention was so high. And really looking at them, I could see them through the light…

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A very heavy feeling.

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Quite warm.

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The form my senses give my body sound like a bag of snow or leaves that sometimes gets packed on one side or in one area.

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Throws forward. And then can also kind of heat up and vaporize.

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The next piece I did also premiered in 2009, called Dog Heart, with Jonathan Burrows. And it was a duet.

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Jonathan had made several duets with this man, Matteo Fargion. And besides the many other differences between me and Matteo…

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In performance, the sort of most startling to me - but you know, think of these things - for me the most startling distinction was that suddenly I felt very feminine, which really had nothing to do with the process or the content of the piece, but… suddenly became significant in performance.

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And also like a dancer, I felt like a dancer. Matteo is a musician.

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One of the things about this piece, I think, that is somehow interesting, is that Jonathan and I really set out to make something that was not about itself. That was our intention.

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So we used text, and we used images that we drew, from drawings that hung up. And there was a table and two chairs. Two microphones. Nothing in the piece is memorised except for the movement material.

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So I will be checking my notes.

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So the senses that I used the most, because this femininity thing came up… A sense of rhythm, but not exactly rhythmic rhythm, more like time, divided time… this changed a lot.

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A sense of history, of my own history, of working with people that… I worked with someone in New York for a long time, very different but a similar thing to Jonathan in terms of the use of material, as being just something that drives structure.

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So, you know, the care that you take as a dancer of the material was really very personal. And in terms of the piece, it had to be precise, but the content of the material was really secondary. So inside this dance, there is another dance going on that you’re making.

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Or you’re living out.

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I have a lot of pleasure in that sort of meaninglessness of the material. I really like it.

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The smaller environment to larger environment in this piece. Jonathan lives upstairs from me, and when I can’t see him, when I’m in my apartment, I can hear him. And we also live across from De Walvis, so we know where all the ‘kunsties’ are.

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And I think that’s quite significant. For Jonathan there is the particular thing of having privacy, but feeling connected.

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We were quite well supported in this piece. But I never had any sense of thinking about where that money was coming from, or why, or what was going on. It seemed really irrelevant for me. Although I think Jonathan thinks about that from the inside.

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He’s here, I’m here. Usually it’s the other way.

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In terms of the environment that the piece and my senses create within this piece. It’s like a boat.

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Ah, I’m doing this wrong, yeah, well, it doesn’t matter…

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Like a boat, where everything is made of wood and glue and string. It’s kind of creaky and tight. Secret compartments.

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And there is a feeling of… passing through continents, drifting by… (…) passing by them, feeling the currents. And the winds bring smells by, something familiar.

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I felt like one of those overbred hunting dogs, who doesn’t really hunt anymore. Not super-bright, but with training in its genes, and very happy to use that when it doesn’t get overexcited by other things.

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So the next piece that I did was with Rosas, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. And the piece is called En Atendant. There’s eleven people in the piece, eight dancers and three musicians. And there are a lot of people around the work that are very integrated into the work: the rehearsal director, the production manager and the technicians, they’re also very involved.

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I had known Anne Teresa’s work for a long time. But it’s — her work is not really part of my history in a way that it is for Europeans, I think…

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One of the things for me with her in particular, was again this sense of femininity, a kind of iconic femininity.

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And it’s a little bit difficult for me to relate to that level of femininity without irony, because of my background. And I knew that that was inappropriate or actually dull in this situation. So I had to kind of figure out a way to embed that in the material and I was given room to do that.

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A very strong sense of phy, physi, phys, ph, ph, ph… physical empathy to the music. To singing in particular. As if the voice, as my friend Becky says, her “thing” was in my body.

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Also by night…

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The sense of space is less about volume and more about direction. Less about touch, somehow. More about flying, that feeling of going far.

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And we used a lot of… we studied the period, the 14th century.

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So there were a lot of historical characters that became fictional characters within the piece. I was a fat but charming fifteen-year-old German princess, married to Charles VI who went insane.

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Mikael [Marklund] was a fountain.

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But in performance, these experiences of the fiction of things has eventually become blended with a sense of inclusion, trying to include the whole space, all the people, including the audience, because we can see them, also, especially the first five rows.

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The kunsty-politic of this piece. It is a very new experience for me, to be in such a large, elaborated structure. I had the feeling I had been invited to ride like a dinosaur. Big body, small head. Rare. Lots of predators. Really almost extinct.

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This is the ironic part. A bit trashy.

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The environment feels like a big fish tank. Janet [Panetta] says all my images are watery. Not true. With things like stories, people, music floating through, occasionaly coming close to you, passing by.

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There’s a lot of waiting in this piece. Part of the piece.

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Watching at people.

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This is Mark [Lorimer].

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In terms of my own body, what my senses create of me…

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There’s a few things. One is that my… this is too (…).

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In the process - which I told myself I wouldn’t speak about, but I just want to say something - I realized that the directions that Anne Teresa gave us to consider to make a phrase with, felt like ballet to me.

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I don’t really remember the original phrase here but… This is nine. One, two, three, four, five, six,… I think I have a kind of naive relation to these directions, because what I hear from other people is much more elaborated. What I realized is that for me there is this one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine.

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Again my pleasure in feeling those directions was antidoted by my irony in relation to those cultural structures and the history of my own body of those materials.

00:46:06 00:46:13

Time was moving forward, to clean up. I’m watching Sue-Yeon [Youn] and Cynthia [Loemij].

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Because of this sense of totality or inclusion, the body that seems to be coming up more and more is mine…

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But in a strange way, because at the same time that I feel myself more and more vividly in the piece - this is the piece that I performed the most of all these pieces and the most recently, and will continue to do.

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Also, I observe my body aging. There are certain things that I see like, there is this nice thing when I’m lifted by Bostjan [Antoncic]. His face is very close to me, there is the colour of the skin that comes up. And I see these kind of faults in the crook of my elbow. And just the texture is different. You know, it’s not the same material. It’s this thing happening with gravity.

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But you know, I think, initially, it repulsed me. Like when you’re an adolescent and you… something is just happening. And now, I don’t feel so repulsed, but it’s (…). It’s significant. And you know, it’s so often in my arms. Because, you know, I can’t really see all this so much.

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So my experience is that my body is my body, but it’s looking for a place to land. Some kind of, like a dislocation and then… location and then… push off or return.

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That’s it. Thank you very much.