I’ve landed this one so many times. From sun and warmth and Naarm to grey and cold and Berlin — You talking about the taxi drivers, Frances? I’m talking about the … never mind.
I thought it was called a Sun Dog. Similar, but different. It’s a Glory. Last time I saw a glory was flying into London to work with Onyx on Take This, For It Is My body, early morning end-October last year. That time, the plane raced along at its centre, as a shadow on the ground.
It’s an early morning thing, and cold morning one. This time I wasn’t sure it was real or just my eyes diffracting the scratched plastic and glass of the window. It came and went for some minutes, waning and waxing then departing as we altered course. It wasn’t very pronounced, but still, sun glory over the Baltic, flying from Helsinki to Berlin on the last leg of my first return to Naarm / Melbourne in a decade.
I find a quiet byway and stretch myself out. Old habit of transfers, me on the floor in an airport. Later, I go to the bathroom and give my face a scrub and moisturise, brush my teeth. New habit of transfers. My nose is Australian Red from the sun, and compression socks scratch my sunburn. Also a new habit — the socks, that is.
Home for the next nine and an half hours. Tail Cam view of Cathay Pacific Airbus A350–900 flight AY5834, Melbourne to Hong Kong. The food was well up to remembered standards of Cathay.
That went quickly.
Also in keeping with the theme of obvious symbolism I’ve been on the receiving end of the last couple of days, here’s a Thai Airways plane getting prepped for departure.
Bumped into window seat of first row in Business Class on the hope it’d get me out the door quicker to catch my Hong Kong connection. Skansfjärden, Salmen, Rönnskär, Kyrkogårdsön, Porkkala, Lillkanskog, Björkholmsfjärden, Friggesby, Gunnarskulla.
You thought I was joking about Dasniya only being in Berlin on a Tuesday? Right now she’s in Oldenburg, then she’s off to Warsaw, then back to Berlin to perform, then I dunno — too far in the future to scry. Definitely in Berlin in December with Das Helmi though. Plenty of rope/shibari/bondage/yoga workshops in November too (and Wellness to Torture is still the best name for a workshop ever).
Dear Rope and Theatre Friends,
the must-be event of the month is the Porn Film Festival 2016, starting next week. Check out my first photo exhibition Moviemento cinema! For November there will be five morning classes, and a bondage gig for Arte.
Also back in November: Yoga Shibari, and Self-Suspension #2.
Oil–burn your ropes and stay warm,
- Shows & Exhibitions
- Berlin Workshops
These days, Dasniya calls me mid-week:
“Hey, D! Where are you?”
“Berlin! I just got back from [place]”
“Excellent! You here this weekend?”
“Nah, I’m off tomorrow morning to [other place].”
And repeat next week.
Last week she was in Mainz, this week Helsinki. Right now, yes! For the Helsinki Shibari Festival, where she’s teaching a rope/shibari/bondage workshop this weekend. In Helsinki? Go. It’s called Wellness to Torture. How could anyone not want to go to a workshop called that? Also another one called Japanese Dreams, where she goes into butoh and bondage.
In Berlin, not in Helsinki? Her Tuesday morning workshops are running all October. And she was in Oliver Riehs’ new comedy Der Affenkönig, on at CineStar Kulturbrauerei from next week.
- Shows & Teaching Abroad
- Berlin Workshops (at Institut Sommer in Berlin-Wedding)
- 3 x Shibari Technique in Oct: Tuesdays 4, 11 & 18 (No class on the 25th), always 10am -12pm
- Self-suspension Workshop 14th Oct. 12-16h
Since July, I’ve been working with Isabelle Schad on her new work, a solo called Fugen. Next Thursday is the première.
Fugen by Isabelle Schad
With Fugues, Berlin choreographer and dancer Isabelle Schad continues her work between musical concepts and their expression in movement. Coming from a music background, she attempts to look at her own (hi)story and the origins of (her) movement between discipline and pleasure, examining the body and its energies in its materiality, process, and time.
The fugue serves her as an analogy for the body in exercise, where the principles of chasing and fleeing, giving and receiving, emptiness and fullness, are becoming one.
Fugues is an autobiographical work in which the performer’s body serves as an example for the construction of the individual within disciplines and systems one cannot escape from.
Thursday, 29th Oct 2015, 20:00, HAU Hebbel am Ufer (Berlin)
30th, 31st Oct, & 1st Nov 2015, 20:00
Audience talk after the performance on Friday 30th with Jun.-Prof. Dr. Susanne Foellmer, Isabelle Schad, and Sasa Bozic
Concept, choreography and performance: Isabelle Schad
Dramaturgy: Sasa Bozic
Artistic assistance: Frances d’Ath
Associated artists: Laurent Goldring, Alain Franco
Light design: Mehdi Toutain-Lopez
Costume: Charlotte Pistorius
Production management: Heiko Schramm
Production: Isabelle Schad
Co-production: HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Espace Pasolini (Valenciennes)
Funded by: the Regierende Bürgermeister von Berlin – Senatskanzlei – Kulturelle Angelegenheiten, and the Nationales Performance Netz (NPN) Koproduktionsförderung Tanz, which is funded by the Beauftragten der Bundesregierung für Kultur und Medien on the basis of a decision by the Deutschen Bundestags.
Supported by: Wiesen55 e.V.
Thanks to: Damir Simunovic
photo: Laurent Goldring
Oh beautiful darling Nigel, what can I say? I think you’d hate all the grief (but be secretly fucking smug at it all, or maybe want to know why you didn’t knock the Olympics off the front page), and I’ve got you in my guts like a plague so you’ll have to hear it from me also. If you’re not too busy rotting, that is.
I’ve been reading your emails. God, but I was vacuous. I probably should have been a little more attentive when you bought a glass of orange juice in a heart-shaped glass in the morning after all those weeks of chaos, and why the fuck I didn’t jump on a plane to Helsinki and miss some days of rehearsing?
It was the last day of teaching in ImPulsTanz (I wonder what you’d say about that? Probably that I had become a sell-out reactionary of the bourgeoisie, and did I think I was better than you? Something unprintably and laughably offensive anyway), and lunch was being assembled when I heard the quiet, excited clamour of a death. “Who?” I asked, when the huddle had turned itself outward, and the person behind me said your name.
Was it you who unzipped my top that first day, when we were rolled and pulled around the (now also gone) loft studio in Tanzhaus Wasserwerk? After a mere 10 days you’d teased out not a small amount of my life, secrets, loves, desires … and yes, all that we spoke of over rosehip tea on the Sunday Zürichsee ferry you gleefully announced I would make theatre out of on the Wednesday. It became all the people… and probably the best 15 minutes of performance I’ve ever made.
I don’t think anyone has had such an effect on me and my messing around in dance, personally, as you, and you are responsible for so much of my work since those weeks in Zürich — I even thought voice work was rubbish until you came along. I’m embarrassing you now, aren’t I?
Or maybe … I hadn’t really thought of you that much since the last time I was in Vienna, and saw a work of yours, hoped you might be in town also. Or rather, I’d thought of you often, talked about you and how you’d inspired me and pulled out absolutely the best work I’ve done, talked about how various things I might be working on came from you in one way or another; but really thinking about you … I just expected you’d be around until you were old and crapulous.
Your emails, god they are eye-wateringly, obscenely hilarious. And not enough. Fuck, Nigel, way too soon. Who’s going to save dance from the endless, turgid, dull hippy hell now that you’ve sodded off? You were a step into a bigger world for me, and I never want that to end.
I MISS NOTHING.
I AM NOTHING.
I AM BEFORE DEATH.
I’m poor and unemployed and unemployable. Loving it.
Fuck me when I’m ninety?