Tuesday, 21st June 2011

Megan Kennedy – a final “Access all Areas” experience

Megan Kennedy, Co-Artistic Director of junk ensemble, was the third of our “Access all Areas” pass holders. Here’s her reflection on her busy evenings during DDF 2011:

“I had the great fortune of being presented with one of three “Access All Areas” passes, gaining entry to every Dublin Dance Festival performance, workshop and lecture. I’ve never won so as much as a romantic dinner for two at Burdock’s chipper so you can imagine my surprise.

With this pass I was able to attend performances otherwise sold out or difficult to get into, and could therefore see nearly everything in the diverse, colourful, exciting programme of 2011.

My two crème de la crème highlights included:

Cédric Andrieux in his solo performance choreographed by Jérôme Bel, particularly his sardonic love for his tie-dyed pink unitard and the choreographed clatter of the performer falling from the fly towers of the Grand Canal Theatre into a heap of golden rice. (I do know he didn’t actually fall from the heavens…) Cloud Gate was a stunningly beautiful spectacle made all the more beautiful by the largest audience to ever attend a contemporary dance performance in Ireland.

Thank you to all who made “Access all Areas” possible and to the entire DDF team for another superb year. Chip supper is on me.”

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Thursday, 16th June 2011

Elena Giannotti – “Access all Areas” or Whirling in Dublin, May 2011

Elena Giannotti performed in Fearghus O Conchúir’s powerful and beautiful work, Tabernacle at Project Arts Centre on the closing weekend of DDF 2011. This is her reflection on what it meant to her to have an ‘Access all Areas’ package:

“May in Dublin means Dance Festival.

What is a festival? maybe something like: a period of time set aside for feasting and celebration.

If I had to give someone going to a festival any advice I would say: see as much as you can, meet as many people as you can, talk as much as you can, dance as much as you can.  (After all this, maybe drink as much as you can, but this is another story…)

Another question: what is a dancer? maybe something like: someone who likes to participate, someone who likes to ‘ access all areas’.

However, we dancers with stretchy legs but rigid pockets, can’t afford the ‘as much as you can’ festival philosophy most of the time….
…but then came the Fund it present: an ‘Access all Areas’ package!

What can I say? Thank you Thank you Thank you to all generous and caring donors!

This year at DDF I have been pleasurably overwhelmed by art, visions, actions, faces, thoughts.

I have been a dancer, performer, workshop attender, audience member, passer-by and visitor.

The eastern wind has taken my heart and thoughts on an imaginative journey. The performance of Eiko and Koma and meeting them at their workshop were particularly inspiring and opened new routes for me to oniric fields for my practice.

Many thanks again and I am looking forward to returning the gift and becoming a donor next time at DDF 2012!”

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Monday, 13th June 2011

Maria Nilsson Waller – an “Access all Areas” experience

Maria Nilsson Waller, whose short work Walker was featured in Re-Presenting Ireland, was one of the lucky artists who received an ” Access all Areas” pass, enabling her to attend every event during the Festival. Here’s what she had to share about her experience:

“One day, in the middle of rehearsals I received an unexpected phone call to let me know that I would receive a free “Access all Areas” pass to Dublin Dance Festival, thanks to the Festival’s Fund it campaign. As an independent artist I would not have been able to afford tickets to many of the performances myself and a tough selection process was already going on in my mind. What to see and what to skip? Take a chance on something risky or invest safely in performances I knew I would like? I am so glad I got this opportunity to see all of the pieces during the festival, especially since it turned out that some of my favourite performances were not on my original priority list.

There was one performance  in particular at Project Arts Centre, by Javanese dancer Mugiyono Kasido, that really touched me. Rooted in Javanese traditional dance, he is one of the most highly skilled performers I have ever seen, with a body control to die for. Even though my cultural and artistic background is very different I was surprised by how easily I could receive and connect to his work, and even recognise many of my own particular interests and ideas in it. I did not expect that I, a Swedish-born, Irish-based contemporary dancer and choreographer would meet at Dublin Dance Festival a man from the other side of our planet and see him embody and master so many of my own artistic visions. To me this was a reminder that dance truly is a universal art form and has the power to connect people from different cultures and circumstances. I wish to stay in touch with Mr Kasido as I think he would be able to teach me many things. Hopefully another opportunity to meet him will present itself in the not too distant future.”

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Thursday, 2nd June 2011

DDF Photo Diary – reception for Fearghus Ó Conchúir and Koncentrat

On the final weekend we were treated to the absurd humour of Rafal Dziemidok of Koncentrat and the World Premiere of Tabernacle, an intensely emotional and many-layered work by leading independent Irish choreographer Fearghus Ó Conchúir. A full house celebrated the opening night – and we enjoyed one last reception at Project Arts Centre.

Audience members share their thoughts.

DDF Board member, Helen Meany congratulates the artists and performers.

Fearghus Ó Conchúir thanks all those involved in the creation of Tabernacle.

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Thursday, 2nd June 2011

DDF Photo Diary – Reception for Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, hosted with the Taipei Representative Office

After a mesmerising performance, guests of DDF and the Taipei Representative Office in Ireland, lead by Dr. Harry Tseng, enjoyed a lively reception at The Circle Club of the Grand Canal Theatre and toasted to Mr. Lin Hwai-min and his superb company.

Guests enjoying the reception at The Circle Club

L to R: DDF Chair, Dermot McLaughlin; DDF Director, Laurie Uprichard and Artistic Director of Cloud Gate, Mr. Lin Hwai-min (looking surprised by the flowers!)

Mr. Lin Hwai-min with Dr. Harry Tseng, the Taipei Representative in Ireland

Mr. Lin Hwai-min and Dr. Harry Tseng with guests of the Taipei Representative Office.

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Thursday, 2nd June 2011

DDF Photo Diary – Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan

On the afternoon of Thursday May 26 a crowd of media-types came along to Grand Canal Theatre to catch a pre-performance glimpse of the stunning Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan. Dave went along too, and we think it’s safe to say the photos speak for themselves…

All photos by Dave Soanes

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Thursday, 2nd June 2011

DDF Photo Diary – Grand Canal Theatre, May 26

On Thursday May 26 over 1500 people came to see the extraordinary Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan perform one of their signature works, Songs of the Wanderers. Antanas was on hand to snap the crowds as they arrived at the beautiful Grand Canal Theatre…

Harry Tseng, Taipei Representative Office in Ireland and Laurie Uprichard, DDF

All photos by Studio Antanas Burokas.

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