Guelph Dance Festival 2013 Sneak Peek: Pamela Tzeng

In the weeks leading up to Guelph Dance Festival 2013, some of the amazing dance artists who will perform at the Festival will also share their vision with us here on the blog. These intimate, behind-the-scenes looks will bring us closer to the artistry, process, and experience of dance. We encourage you to not just read these amazing stories, but to ask questions or engage in conversation about dance in our comments section below. Welcome to our 15th anniversary year!
Pamela Tzeng presents at our In the Studio series on Saturday, June 1 and Sunday June 2, 2pm,at Dancetheatre David Earle, 42 Quebec Street. She shares her experience with us here:
Pamela:  I remember at the very beginning of the creative process for I do not and I do, I spent almost an entire three-hour rehearsal peering through my camera, click click clicking away, capturing images of my partner and collaborator Jason Owin Galeos.  From this impromptu photo session came an array of faceless portraits and sculptural shapes that were used as departures for much of our physical research.  

Jason Owin Galeos. Photo by Pamela Tzeng

Inspiration for this duet grew from my visit to La Musées Royal des Beaux Arts de Belgique while in Brussels over the spring of last year.  An afternoon spent observing and reflecting on the work of surrealist artist Renee Magritte sparked for me a new curiosity in faceless anonymity, uncanny juxtapositions and disjointed figures.

Les Amants by Renee Magritte

Months later, my mind remained flooded with surrealist imagery, in particular shrouded faces of both individuals and lovers. Striking paintings like Magritte’s Les Amantsroused questions in myself about the conscious and unconscious masking of one’s identity. The protective layers one wears that lead to isolation and emotional distance from others and the recognition that even in our most intimate relationships there are aspects of the self that remain concealed; fearful of the vulnerability of being truly seen.  These ideas complemented by Pablo Neruda’s Sonnet No. XLIV were the principle seeds for the creation of this duet.
I do not and I do. Photo by Tim Nguyen.

It’s been interesting delving back into the world of this dance theatre piece.  Evolved from such specific emotional ideas and introspective investigations, I feel the piece really needed the time given since its premiere to breathe and settle in our minds and bodies.  Returning to it now with fresh eyes and objectivity has enabled me to refine and add more depth to the composition as well as our interpretation of the work.
The following video, made especially for you, was crafted from footage of recent rehearsals for the remount of I do not and I do. I hope this provides a glimpse into the piece, leaving a little mystery and intrigue for what is to come In the Studio.

I do not and I do (in rehearsal) from Pamela Tzeng on Vimeo.
Video by Pamela Tzeng
I do not and I do premiered in September of 2012 at the Annual Alberta Dance Festival in Calgary, AB.  It was created with the support of Dancers’ Studio West and mentorship from Davida Monk.
Pamela Tzeng is a contemporary dance artist currently based in Calgary, Alberta. Hercreations live in the realm of dance theatre where abstract and non-linear narratives depict her interest in the complexities of identity and relationship. Combining articulate expression with the interplay of spontaneous physicality she aims to create dance that is visceral and emotionally evocative.  In addition to developing work focused on dance for the stage, interdisciplinary and site-specific performance represent an ever-evolving aspect her craft.

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