News: 52 Portraits - video series capturing dancers' fears and freedom

Thursday 11 August 2016

Kwame Asafo-Adjei
Photo: Hugo Glendinning

Choreographer Jonathan Burrows and composer Matteo Fargion were inspired to create 52 Portraits – a series of solos filmed by Hugo Glendinning and produced by Sadler’s Wells – following the creation of their Elders project which “celebrated the experience, wisdom and grace encapsulated in the bodies and the memories of older dancers”.

52 Portraits is being posted weekly online throughout 2016, featuring two of the original subjects, Betsy Gregory and Namron, with others ranging from the 29-year-old dance-maker Alexandrina Hemsley to the 91-year-old choreographer Robert Cohan, and from performance artist Hetain Patel to Royal Ballet principal Zenaida Yanowsky.

“Burrows has collaborated closely with each subject, editing their individual dance gestures and body language into a choreographed portrait, while Fargion, as for the Elders project, has used their words as the basis for his accompanying songs. At their best, these portraits capture something unique, even mysterious about each dance artist; but they also create an impressionistic portrait of the profession – highlighting the mix of inspiration, fear, delight and freedom the art form engenders, as well as the darker worries about injury, bad performances and money that stalk every career. “

Read the full article on Judith Mackrell’s Dance Blog on the Guardian website, 9 August 2016.

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