One + One Make Three (OC, AD, CC)
This experimental docu-dance film takes audiences into the studio with acclaimed ensemble Kinetic Light, exploring disability as a creative force. Access: Audio description, captions. Director Katherine Helen Fisher/Safety Third Productions
This film is presented with Open Captions, Audio Description, and Closed Captions.
For more accessibility options, allarts.org/pastpresentfuture
:A zooming sound bursts forward
Animated logo for All Arts flies onto screen All Arts Original
In black and white, two dancers soar from aerial points in their manual wheelchairs, clasp hands, release, to sail off screen.
Text: Past. Present. Future. :bright, cheerful synthesized :music bounces over a peppy beat
Major funding for the Past Present Future Festival is provided by Rockefeller Brothers Fund and other funders
For the full list of funders, please visit the All Arts website. :energetic :electronic pulses and bubbles
Text: In 2020, All Arts invited three choreographers to work with filmmakers of their choice to explore
through movement and film what the concepts of past, present, and future meant to them during an unprecedented year
Introducing the Past Present Future Festival.
Fade to black
Text: "Societies never know it, but the war of an artist with their society is a lover's war.
And they do, at their best, what lovers do,
which is to reveal the beloved to themselves and, with that revelation, to make freedom real."
Text, James Baldwin, The Creative Process
AUDIO DESCRIPTION (AD): Tree-covered coastal mountains come into view,
the city stretching out beyond, the sky hazy in the distance.
:marimba chimes echo chords
:synthesized electronic :chords build
Fade to black
Then, close-up: knobby, moss-laced branches
of a heritage oak.
Kate: :distorted and distant Devon will get some exterior
shots just to locate where the project takes place.
Alice: One of the things that's interesting about this whole rehearsal process
AD: Title, One Plus One Make Three The oak's multiple trunks fused into one.
Alice: and, you know, there's a cyclist
Alice: who shoots through the space.
Alice: who shoots through the space. :whir of bicycle wheels
AD: A narrow, shaded road.
Alice: It's every film trope of
Alice: how the trees arc up over the road.
Alice: How the mist works.
Alice: How the mist works. oand then how the...
Alice: I keep saying it's filmic
Alice: I keep saying it's filmic obut of course it's filmic!
Alice: in the way that it's
Alice: in the way that it's so surreal, but actually,
Alice: in the way that it's so surreal, but actually, oit's so specific
Alice: coded in filmic language
Alice: coded in filmic language - -and it's real.
Alice: coded in filmic language - -and it's real. oand it's real
AD: Peeking through arches of the tree, then an arm arcs into the air, softly
folds back to the dancer's body. JH: Arm slowly lowered. Balanced AS: Eyes closed. Balanced. AS: Arch...on bough.
Two black dancers on their bellies, JH: Curled on bough, eyes closed
chests raised, eyes closed. :high piano notes alternate AS: Breathing in. Arms behind. AS: Head diving down.
Jerron lowers his body as Alice's arms soar upwards, :hollow wooden marimba :notes resonate
her head lowering. :plucked notes fall like rain
The mass of oak limbs, towering, reaching to the clouds.
Now three dancers planted within nooks of the many trunks.
Alice: It's this incredible embodiment of the tree, LL: Quick pull. Arch-Float-Roll.
Alice: suddenly filled with dancers. AS: Fold body to the tree.
ouh, suddenly the tree is alive JH: Recumbent against tree. JH: Nestled. Feeling Laurel.
AD: The three dancers stretch, fold, curl, ouh, what kind of tree is, like AS: Supported. Look up. Surprise
caress bark, fingertips brushing AS: Soft embrace of AS: the trunk of the tree.
Laurel, a white dancer - the third-lying along LL: Reach. Clasp. Relax.
a massive branch, reaching down. :intentional upward :music progressions
She grasps Alice's hand as Alice shares weight with Jerron, :intentional upward :music progressions
balanced on one knee. AS: Grasp. Reach. AS: Holding on. AS: Sinking to ground.
The three melt and settle to stillness. JH: Dissolving to ground. JH: Atop Alice and Laurel.
The image evaporates. Now, the tree. :soft synthesizer melody
The view tilts up from the brown-grass-covered ground
to try to take in the tree's enormity.
Brightly-lit, pale sky.
Fade to black.
Part One: The Present
Alice: It is...November, 2020
Alice: It is...November, 2020 o2020
AD: A panel of opaque windows, a huge studio, lights hanging. :soft metallic boom
Alice: It is in the middle of the COVID pandemic. :metallic crank clangs
Alice: It is in the middle of the COVID pandemic.
Alice: The world has broken apart. :lift whirs upward
AD: Alice, in N95 mask, wheels in from backstage. AS: Wheeling in. AS: Pushing, rhythmically.
Alice: We're in a bubble. We're following COVID protocols. :metallic clang
AD: Cat, the rigger who is white, steps out of an :metal rattles
aerial work platform as Laurel wheels in to join Alice. LL: wooden boards squeak
Alice: We're watching the COVID numbers go up. AS: Sitting. Leaning in.
AD: A marley dance floor, a lowered aerial dance bar at the center.
Jerron walks in behind rows of gear and supplies, JH: Revealed. JH: And then, strident.
Alice: But we're here in a bubble making art. :laughs
AD: Work tables near the dance space. :alternating marimba chimes
AD: We look directly at each dancer lit by sunlight AS: Exhaustedly. Staring.
through the windows: Laurel, Alice, Jerron. JH: Serene facing. JH: Looking forward.
Alice: I am seeing Laurel and Jerron for the first time since March. JH: Turn to respond.
Alice: We haven't done this since March. LL: Check the rigging--
Alice: We haven't done this since March. Um, and even if you're doing your,
Alice: your best to maintain a minimum, LL: Lever, spin, press, spot. LL: Dizzy. Drop. Again.
Alice: you can't maintain six hours of tough dance work on your own every day AS: Wobbly, jerky, lift. Flight?
AD: Alice, hooked to the aerial point, floats. Laurel holds her wheelchair. They twist. AS: Anchored. Slowly ascending.
AS: Feeling weight. AS: Spinning. Dizziness.
Alice: We're working with aerial equipment, LL: Free the mat -- LL: And now...and crash.
Alice: you can't rig that necessarily and be on it for six hours a day.
AD: With each twist, they rise, both now aloft. oand be on it AS: Turning. Turning. AS: Hand to knee. Weighted.
Cat takes notes, holds a controller AS: Raising arms. Looking up. AS: Nervously checking equipment
to raise and lower the aerial point. ovoices overlap AS: Nervously checking. Spring!
Alice touches down, untwists. :rubber bungees squeak :droning synthesizer intensifies
Jerron, on his belly, leans, slaps his thigh. :slap against thigh
Standing, Cat buckles a belt around his waist, :metallic chimes build JH: Waiting. Cat surrounds.
clamps cables to it. :metal carabiner clicks
Alice: So we're here. It's November 2020, :metal carabiner clicks
Alice: and we have this kind of glorious month of being together making work. :electronic tones alternating
Alice: Mm. Unreal. oof being together making work JH: Lilting. JH: Feet mirrored by marley.
Alice: Mm. Unreal. Man. 2020. JH: An arch, tripled. JH: Straight leans.
AD: Suspended in the air, Jerron rolls. :rubber bungee stretching
Feet touch down, and he springs himself up. :metallic equipment :against cloth
Sits, twists to the ground, a leaf on a breeze. JH: Springing upright turns, JH: grasping harness
Kate: at it every night, instead of, you know... Alice: Yeah, yeah JH: absorbing, welcoming ground
Kate: all at once. Alice: Yeah, yeah. That sounds good... That sounds good.
:offscreen voice: Marker :plastic snaps twice
AD: The director's slate claps.
:calming marimba chimes :resound and overlap Windows are a mix of frosted, textured glass and clear.
Light pours in as Laurel and Alice duet
in the air, their masks off.
The dance plays in slow motion, the view orbiting around them.
Together, they trace a circle through the air. Laurel sits upright holding one of Alice's hands.
Alice floats on her side, her other hand AS: Aloft. Turning. Reaching. AS: Solid. Rotating.
clasping Laurel's wheelchair. LL: Focus
Their wheels spin from the force of their bodies turning.
LL: Complex system of LL: metal and flesh
Laurel tilts Alice further,
gripping hand over hand along her wheelchair.
Rows of seats are tucked away, Cat observing thoughtfully
from her wooden stage-side table, a slight smile. LL: No up, no down.
Alice now almost fully upside down as Laurel grips her wheel, LL: No up, no down.
face still with focus as she tilts onto her side,
the spin continuing. :low marimba chimes resume :alongside intensifying drone
A gallon dispenser of hand sanitizer on a table.
Alice and Laurel both release one hand to grip :marimba chime harmony
the cables they are suspended from.
Alice's wheel rests on Laurel's lap.
Cat, the rigger, unfolds sets of tumbling mats, :vinyl and velcro brush, crunch
Velcros them together, secures them with sandbags. :sandbag thuds
A new day, the dancers return to rehearse.
Alice: So, here's a question, like, how does a, a piece of, AS: Thoughtfully wheeling.
Alice: how does a work come into being? AS: Thrumming bungee. AS: Checking wheels.
Alice: Some choreography is top-down. JH: Caring for another.
Alice: Some choreography, AS: Belly to floor. AS: Wheels up. AS: Thumbs up. Fear.
Alice: every motion of every finger LL: From gravity to the air
Alice: and every position and every look
Alice: is crafted by the choreographer, LL: Give and take.
Alice: but, in the course of -- AS: Anticipation. AS: Feeling the rub. Flight.
Alice: Man, no, I've been doing this since...2005?? AS: Haul down on bungee.
Alice: -- um, most of the pieces I've been in since then have not been that way. AS: Pull down on bungee. Bounce!
Alice: And so, the dancers themselves, particularly in modern dance, AS: Land. Chest lifted, Ecstatic
Alice: and contemporary, like post-modern dance, um, JH: Warming in coil. Synchronous JH: deep upright circles.
Alice: the invitation is for dancers to be creators in the process. AS: Kneeling. Lurching.
AD: They kneel, each entwined AS: Hip circle. Drop. Lift.
AD: in coils of barbed wire. AS: Circle. Sway. othe structure, and...
Jerron: I had always really wanted to be an artist, um,
Jerron: and it's curious because I do think that an artist AS: Upside down. Upside down.
Jerron: has to have a certain amount of, AS: Turn...to embrace.
Jerron: um, oh gosh, confidence :nervous laugh AS: Hanging. Holding the wire. AS: Folding the wire.
Jerron: and, like, assurance in who they are and what they can bring to the table. AS: Encircling. Wrapping.
Jerron: For me, artistry was really just the ability to make, AS: Stroke. Release.
Jerron: just put things into the world, um, from my perspective.
JH: Receiving a gift above you, JH: Rejecting a mantle JH: ferociously.
JH: Burrowing into it. JH: Nestles, break off
Jerron: But I recognize that what's, what's true for me is true for a lot of people.
AD: Alice, suspended, dances with Jerron who burrows through JH: body absorbed
oand even if what's not explicit
AD: coils of barbed wire. AS: Pull arm. Shared weight. AS: Create spin. Pulling wheels.
AD: Alice and Laurel, clipped to each end of a bar, AS: Push wheels. Faster. Flying. AS: Reach. Hand in hand. See-saw
AD: clasp forearms and spin, the take flight. AS: Pull up, Pull down. AS: Landed. Pull back.
Alice: What you see here in our process AS: Body emerging from behind.
Alice: is that Wired is being made, LL: Cling, catch the momentum
Alice: it's being made in a kind of cauldron of process where AS: Hand...to head. AS: Push. Love...Hate.
Alice: the dancers are contributing and I'm contributing and the composers are contributing and it's not me
Alice: saying you do this you do this, you do this, you do this. AS: Fear. Unclear. Looking. LL: Drop...and throw.
Alice: It's this kind of mish-mash of raw commitment. LL: Carefully embrace AS: Seeing. Acknowledging.
AS: Looking. Seeing. LL: Loose...and linked. AS: Acknowledging. Arms spread, AS: wings folding, seeking.
LL: Arch...becomes a lever. Alice: You know, we have, we've passed this kind of 19th century genius solo creator model.
AD: In the air, they see-saw as they spin. AS: Spread. Folding. Seeking.
AD: Back on the ground. AS: Falling back. :flutters of marimba notes overlap
AD: Laurel on her back, legs intertwined sensually AS: Catch. Hold. Grasp.
AD: through Alice's wheelchair. AS: Pull wheel. AS: Sling through, swing through
AD: Alice tips back, raising the V of Laurel's legs, clutches the soles of Laurel's feet, one finger at a time.
Laurel: I enjoy partnering. AS: Carve, sit up. AS: Reach. Spin. Turn.
Laurel: I am not a huge fan of solo work.
Laurel: It's not my key artistic interest. AS: Lifting. Rising. Climbing.
Laurel: I enjoy partnering and ensemble.
AD: In the air, duets. AS: Drop fall. AS: Drop. Fall. Soft touch.
AD: Laurel out of her chair, clasps the underside of Alice's wheelchair. LL: Wheel...Hand.
Laurel: I love the way that one person plus one person can make something truly new AS: Bounce. Arch. Rebound.
Laurel: that is not quite the product of either -- :rubber squeals against metal LL: Line...Laughing.
Laurel: or you could sum as one and one make three. AS: Resistance. Fear. Stretching. Swiping. Yielding.
AD: They sway; Laurel holds tight, Alice is lifted higher by the cables AS: Flight -- Push. Push. Jump!
AD: until Laurel's legs are straight, and she begins to ascend too. AS: Yanked! Arch...
AD: Together, they twist. :whirl of voice and breath
AD: Now, sunlight flooding the studio, AS: Fall...release. :voice yells: Ah!
AD: Alice tumbles into view from above, fingertips barely :fluttering marimba notes
AD: alighting before the bounce pulls her back up.
On her belly and knees, arms extended,
wheelchair above her, Alice's body in stillness as the cables
pull her backward along
the shimmery black dance surface
Widens her arms as she rises into the air.
Now, wheels have touched down. :fluttering marimba :notes continue, stronger
She rolls forward, and as she and her reflection beneath her
near the edge of the dance floor,
she tips onto footplates, jumps once,
before flinging her body backward into a roll.
Again, she rolls backward, arms in an expansive pose,
the setting sun leaving the studio in a falling dimness.
As she reaches the nadir, her chair tips back slightly.
Her hands clasp the cables above.
Cat sets pieces of equipment on the floor, :metal gear clanks :against the ground
and we return to Alice rehearsing another day.
Folded over herself, she slowly unfurls, :rubber-soled footsteps :on marley floor
takes a turn, heads across the dance floor, :marimba chimes overlap
wheel turn by wheel turn. :rubber wheels :pivot against vinyl AS: Push. Submission.
Stops, leans forward onto hands and knees. AS: Push. Push. Head down.
The view is tight on her focused face as she is again drawn AS: Body forward.
backward, her chin and forearms slipping across the floor, AS: Touch...ground.--
eyebrows raised in fierce concentration. AS: Belly down. Afraid.
Lifts her head, flashes a sly grin before setting down AS: Being dragged.
her cheek and being pulled aloft. AS: Fingers swirl.
She twists. AS: Turning.
The cable lowered slightly, AS: Wheels up.
and her hands pedal across the floor.
AS: Stroke ground.
AS: Pull...swipe...pull... AS: resist...grip.
Kate: :electronically distorted] What do we need to know about disability and access?
AD: Alice on a single mat, :sticky fingers squeak :against marley flooring
panel lights close on either side of her.
Grips the cables.
Alice: The first thing I think the nondisabled world is going to think about is that the wheelchair becomes
Alice: a choreographic object when actually it is not. AS: Fly...bounce. Arch. AS: Spin. Stretch...
Alice: It is my body, and it is not a prop, it is not a tool, it is not a device, it is not an extension of my body.
Alice: It is my body. :airplane sound flying overhead AS: Turn. Grin. Leap. AS: Bounce. Turn. Spin.
AS: Arch. Dive. Touch down AD: View from directly beneath as Alice is lifted, twirls, :droning synthesizer tones
her face lit with a smile. :distantly: ooh, :the camera's coming out!
She continues to sway two feet above the ground
as she picks up the camera and gear. :heavy breathing
Another day, she is high above and being lowered. :metallic clicks of descending rigging equipment
Now, Laurel sits on the floor,
grips Alice's wheels above her head. :rubber wheels thunk
Alice: But my choreographic thinking, which is shared by Laurel and Jerron, AS: Held. Drop. Turn. Catch.
Alice: is how do we fully live into impairment, into disability and how do we choreograph AS: Turn. Fall back.
Alice: the maximum expression of impairment and disability? AS: Swing through. AS: Hurtle forward.
AD: From the ground, Laurel pushes Alice, a pendulum. oso those :voices overlap LL: Pause. Lever--
Laurel: Dance as the expression, otwo, three, okay. LL: catch; change the momentum.
Laurel: Dance as the expression, odance as...
Laurel: Dance as the expression, odance as... odance as...
Laurel: the artistic cultivation and expression
Laurel: of the body is in many ways LL: Careful...press--
Laurel: ideal for the disabled body, LL: feel the weight.
Laurel: because we inherently have something different to say.
Laurel: Now. I cannot compare,
Laurel: having never been nondisabled, uh ocannot compare,
Laurel: what it might be like to dance in a nondisabled body. LL: bound--
AD: Laurel walks her hands across the floor, LL: Creep?
chair and body aloft, spins, glides.
Alice and Laurel apply makeup using handheld mirrors:
Alice, eyeliner; Laurel, a dusting of blush.
The two, now both in the air,
swinging gently, stage lights illuminated. :distorted splashing water
Alice: The goal here is not to sort of set in opposition, AS: Pounce. Bounce. Stretch...
Alice: but to see how the field of dance for disabled artists is expanding; AS: ...release.
Alice: how it can grow, AS: Pounce. Bounce. Stretch...
Alice: to really live out a perspective where disability is not incidental, AS: Pounce. Bounce. Stretch...
Alice: but it is a part of a culture and aesthetic in itself. AS: catch. Turn. Seek...connect.
AD: Back and forth, they rock and float :overlapping marimba chimes
until finally meeting each other's grip.
They glide through the air, clasping each other's forearms,
pulling closer before releasing and both drifting out of view,
fingertips trailing along the ground. AS: Watch
Jerron, in white shirt and tights, floats JH: Held barely,
an inch above the ground in a harness, JH: one foot touches.
gripping an aerial cable as Alice and Laurel look on.
One foot bent, anchored, he takes a slow turn, JH: Suspended twists,
head tilted back, one arm curled tight to his chest. JH: breaths in circles.
Shown in slow motion, he makes soft turns,
sways in the harness, then arcs backward,
his body a rainbow inching ever forward on his toes.
He dives and tumbles, toes, thighs skimming the floor as :distorted airplane :flying overhead
the tender bounces and swinging arcs of the cable are driven
by his gestures and the shifting of his body. :marimba chimes become stronger
He skates backward, his body stiff. JH: face embracing the ground
Then on his side, hovering, he is curled into himself,
one arm trailing.
Then on toes and one hand, tilts and looks upward. JH: Prolonged breath JH: towards the sky,
He reaches slowly up, grabs a cable JH: chest elevated, arm reaches.
and launches into swinging again.
Dives toward the floor. JH: Undulating bounce,
Then, still in the harness, in glow of the the setting sun, JH: Arms formally placed.
stands, leans into the cable until it carries him downward.
Arcs his arm, looks to the dance surface.
Snap to black. :distorted airplane :flying overhead
Part Two: The Past
Back in the studio, a different day.
Jerron dances out of the harness :feet land on marley floor JH: A shock.
Jerron: I think that my weapon is to be a, an artist because I'm creating things that aren't there.
JH: Harsh, angular turns and JH: eyes follow. A circular head
oand so, you know, oit frees the self
AD: His dance is sweeping turns, extension of one arm.
swivels his head, bends and peers back.
Jerron: Like when I get into the studio I feel very secure, JH: Inhale, face held.
Jerron: um, I feel very keyed in to my role and to my value.
AD: In a harness, he runs in large circles, JH: Running away in circles, JH: pushing the air,
nearly taking flight with each step. JH: tapping the surface.
A full wall of bright windows beside the dance floor, :footsteps running on :sprung marley floor
light shimmering on the marley. And then, flight.
Jerron: I look deep inside of me and ask, What are they interested in?
oI look deep inside oof me and ask Jerron: What do they, what do they want?
Jerron: Why are they inviting me? Like, that question circulates, er, and
owhy are they inviting me othat question... Jerron: that's how I bring out what I bring out.
oand that's how I bring out owhat I bring out.
AD: His body continues tracing the large circles.
They slow. Jerron bends back, pulling the circles downward JH: Arch back, until...
until he touches ground, then back into the air. JH: absorbed into the ground. :sharp intake of breath
Jerron: And actually I'm just really interested in assigning legibility :foot taps
Jerron: assigning a, a, a scholarship and a legacy of movement to the things that have JH: Being led by a pull,
Jerron: been called excess and been called too much JH: finding the spin... JH: ...losing the spin.
Jerron: you know they, they land in history, y'know. JH: Flight.
AD: Another day, Jerron dances solo, leaping, diving, JH: Upright and searching,
legs scissor blades slicing. JH: Extreme leans and recoils; JH: a break.
Stops and holds his gaze over one shoulder.
Now, the three dancers each attached to their own cables:
Alice and Laurel in their wheelchairs, :metallic chimes :alternate and flutter
Jerron in a harness around his waist. :metallic booms alternating
In a tender embrace, Laurel and Alice AS: Grasp. Hold...turn...wait--
drift slowly through the air. LL: Early morning--
Laurel's cheek eases down onto Alice's head.
Sitting upright, floating.
Clasping forearms, one bounces and rises as the other sinks LL: Catch, spin. Sequence...
downward, never touching the ground. AS: Upside...weighted.
Alice, upside down, locked in Laurel's gaze.
Laurel upside down as Alice clings to her,
and they drift. AS: Soft turn, spin.
Laurel reaches back to take Alice's cable. LL: Boing!
They twist solo, both their cables suspended from one bar. AS: Pull frame, climb, lift. :distorted sand pours over metal
Mid-air, they take each other's hands, LL: Throw the torso, LL: keep it moving.
no ground beneath them. LL: Circles become swings. AS: Climb. Pull. Reach. AS: Contact: connect.
Back on the ground, still connected to their cables. :cavernous, echoing :pops and clicks
Laurel takes a gentle turn in place.
A dazzling smile as she completes her turn AS: Reach...Laughing.
and catches Alice's attention. AS: Joy.
Alice returns the smile, shoulders rise with laughter.
Swinging together in the air, arms crossed and holding both
hands, then holding only one as they float in and out of view. AS: Hold, and held.
Piercing sunlight. :marimba notes :flutter and overlap
Now solo, Laurel turns slowly LL: Swing
wheels on the ground, arms extended, coming softly to stillness. LL: Timing
Then she crosses the floor on her hands, cables holding her chair LL: Reset--
in the air, takes the cables in hand, launches into turns and twists. :metal equipment clinks
Laurel: Wired is an experiment. LL: Miss. Again? LL: Miss...Together!
Laurel: Wired is an experiment in, and for, disabled dancers.
Laurel: So, in its very naming, Wired is meant to invoke
Laurel: a sense of danger. LL: Pull...Perfectly bound,
Laurel: This idea... LL: Pull...Perfectly bound, LL: Perfectly balanced.
Laurel: that you could be harmed
AD: Laurel swings, twists, oAll dance requires...
AD: as she travels the length of the floor. oAll dance requires...
Laurel: All dance requires emotional vulnerability on the part of the performers.
Laurel: The ability on the part of the choreographer to cultivate and elicit vulnerability in the piece
Laurel: and the ability on the part of the performers to offer and portray it. LL: constant tension--
AD: Gently shifting her hips, Laurel initiates circles. :metal, rubber and skin :squeak in concert
She leans head and arms to the ground,
body in the air, a spring.
Wheels grounded, she turns, a soft caress of the cable.
Then tips, and is carried up.
Moves carefully on her hands. :a voice: Steady.
Laurel: We are well trained; we are physically conditioned for exactly this work.
Laurel: The moments that look risky? We craft those for you so carefully.
owe craft those for you...
Laurel: The moments that truly are risky -- that's often where we're hiding that vulnerability.
AD: Upside down, Laurel, a pendulum swinging in and out
of the bright stage lights.
A fade to black, then a different day
back in the studio, sunlight pouring in. :overlapping marimba chimes
With her footplate on the ground, :overlapping marimba chimes
leaning forward, Laurel hangs, steady, still,
turning in a slow, tight circle
while gripping cables in each hand.
Sits up, then leans till she nearly touches down.
She arches backward, and momentum carries her
to sitting upright again.
The view spins softly around Laurel
as she hovers, motionless.
In his harness, Jerron walks across :wooden hollow rhythmic clicking
one arm extended and folding onto herself. JH: a leg may drag.
They both lean forward, limbs long and reaching. AS: Constrained. Reach. AS: Stretch. Fold.
Alice turns. Jerron is pulled back. AS: Dive down. Spiral. AS: Turn...and climb.
He continues to reach, lunge, and pull, AS: Rest...look.
as Alice dips backward and rises again. AS: Observe...collapse.
Laurel sinks back, is held by cables under her shoulders,
eyes closed, serene.
The view turns to reveal
Alice lying on her belly, wheels spinning.
Laurel's hands come to take her wheel rims.
Slowly turns her wheels to pull herself back up.
Jerron relaxes into his harness,
sitting upright, bouncing gingerly.
All three continue to explore floating, turning,
and feeling stillness as the stage lights AS: Watch, curious.
and sunlight from the dusky windows highlight the contours JH: Drawn against a wave.
of their bodies and their hair. :marimba chimes :continue overlapping
Eyes closed, Alice circles, tips back on her wheels.
Out of her chair, encircled by barbed wire,
Alice begins a turn as Jerron, also encircled in wire, AS: Turn. Fall back, collapse.
tumbles into view. AS: Supported and release. :metallic barbed wire :cracks against marley
She falls to her belly. AS: Rest, stay.
They roll in unison, bodies reflected on the shiny floor. JH: Searching, nestled in wire. JH: Twirling.
Laurel rolls into view. :barbed wire springs and snaps
Jerron swoops out of his wire and kneels, :metallic crunches :against marley and fabric.
dives back into the coils.
They continue rolling.
Alice: The story of Wired is actually pretty simple.
Alice: Um. Wired came about because I was in the Whitney,
Alice: and I saw Melvin Edwards' "Pyramid Up and Down Pyramid,"
Alice: which, if you don't know the work of Melvin Edwards,
Alice: you absolutely have to go and find out about him.
Alice: And this is a barbed wire sculpture.
Alice: And it, I like, I turned the corner and I saw this and I was like, "Oh my god." My world just stopped.
Alice: And then, months passed while I read everything I could about barbed wire.
Alice: And I understood that
Alice: barbed wire as a technology,
Alice: is a border-enforcing technology,
Alice: and that it divides the ground, and it, you know AS: Belly to the ground.
Alice: it divides us and them
Alice: and, I wanted to be able to take this into the notion of territory, and terrain, and AS: Lift; hold wire. Rising--
Alice: surface, and the air and, those things meshed in, you know JH: Back tense. A noise JH: beckons to turn the head.
Alice: those ways that kind of wei-- kind of wild stuff happens that's not really rational. AS: Focused. Determined. Alone.
:metallic echoes othat's not really rational AS: Drop; descend.
:synthesizer chords :rhythmically build and descend JH: Soft grasp JH: outward to nothing
AD: Dancers lit by the stage lights and an illuminated orange wall behind. JH: Quick head jerk
Jerron stands and sweeps an arm up, JH: Stretch arm joints below JH: Alice, framed;
Alice floats high overhead, wrapped in the barbed wire. JH: return to a torso. AS: Observing, holding,
His hand flexes, runs down his side. He leans. AS: Descending. Offering AS: the crown of barbed wire.
Alice hovers, lying sideways, slips the coils softly over Jerron's head.
He spins, explores the coils, as she watches from above. :barbed wire crackles :against marley floor
Alice: A-And then finally, we got to the studio; and we're like okay...
Alice: Here's the structure, here's the story, how do we begin to create?
JH: Drastic spins, unhinged, as JH: Alice looks on. Connect with JH: metal, coil extends beyond,
AD: Alice wraps one end of the wire around her legs, :barbed wire resounding JH: reaches, reaches--
as Jerron dances, folds with the wire below. The three tumble, wrapped in the coils, arms folded
to their chests, legs out long. AS: Tangled in wire. Descending, AS: rolling, bound in wire. :synthesizer chords continue
They roll toward and away from each other, narrowly missing collisions of bodies.
AS: Rolling. Escape the wire. :chords building and descending AS: Near miss. :thud of hands and knees
The studio dark save for the illuminated wall behind and bright lights on the ground.
Their clothing dark, they melt into the black dance surface.
Still wrapped in wire, moving out of the light into AS: Rolling. Feeling. AS: Wire. Bound.
the near pitch black, the three crawl, lurching, lumbering. JH: Panting.
Fade to black. AS: Push. Sway. Rock. AS: Push. Drag. Sway.
Part Three: The Future
AD: Alice's face, wheels up behind her. :hollow, rhythmic croak
Alice: Ready when you are. AS: Drag...look. Arch forward.
Alice: Ready when you are. :offstage voice: I'm ready. AD: Closes her eyes, sets down her head.
AD: The view from the floor. :hollow croaking, like a frog AS: Land on the ground.
Alice, pulled ever-so-slowly away on her belly by the cables. AS: Bounce. Pour.
Her hips rise, body folds to a V Returns. Repeats. AS: Crawl. Pounce.
Alice: I think the thing that's emerging that is maybe not clear is that :metallic clang of wheels
Alice: this is the present. :deep, rich marimba :chimes alternating
Alice: And that a new future is being born out of this present.
AD: This time on her way back, :hands slide :against marley floor
she slithers her body left and right.
Alice: To say that this has been a lost year is actually not right.
Alice: I mean, it's been a reassess, reevaluate year.
Alice: Um. It's been a year of incredible personal growth.
oincredible personal growth, :rubber wheels skid :across marley floor
Alice: um, and personal failure.
Alice: um, and personal failure. Necessary part of growth.
oSo, I'm doing this...
oWell, just a sec-- oI'm not doing this
oWe are doing this
AD: Turns on her side as the cables pull her back. :hands sliding along marley
Again, sliding her hands. :hands sliding along marley :muted boom
Alice: We are doing this, because we have faith and trust and love for each other. AS: Swipe, wipe. Hold head.
AD: Lying on her back, Alice begins a tumble as AS: Comfort. Protection. AS: Push into bounce. Fly.
the cable yanks her into the air and out of view. :deep marimba chimes :palms squeal across marley
Crawls forward again. :metal clicks of :equipment and wheelchair
Alice: Maybe it's a love for the body, it's a love for the wheelchair,
Alice: it's a love for disability, it's...
Alice: a love for movement, it's AS: Leap. Reach. Seek. Push.
Alice: It's I--I, uh, I-- I don't know. It's all of those things, ehn. :deep marimba notes chime
AD: Alice soars, undulates from above, dives, crawls, :palms squeal
weaves her way back and forth, and spins as she bounces. :rhythmic croak
:sharp exhale through the mouth AS: Pounce. Leap. AS: Bounce. Dive. Spin.
Alice: So, it's really unclear where we are in the process, because different things are
Alice: in different places of development... osome things are stabilized
AD: The back wall illuminated purple, fuchsia, and white.
The director's slate claps. :mark clicks twice :rope whines
Alice tumbles out of the sky. AS: Drop rough. Fall, stress. AS: Arms flailing.
Alice: It still feels rich and ripe with possibility
Alice: um, it's not finished.
Alice: um, it's not finished. oum, it's not finished
AD: The cable tied around her waist, she bounces up and down,
resting as the cable pulls her up into the shadows, :metallic rumble
and arms stirring with each descent. :rope rubs quickly against metal
Clutches the cable and spins quickly
as she returns to the ground. :distorted metal :school bell rings
:electronic voice Kate: So, wrapping up. Last question. :deep hollow, metallic boom
AD: She lands, arms wrapped across her chest. :rubber squeaks AS: Wrapped. Descending.
The smooth wet sand of a beach, :ocean roars
gray and tan boulders lining the shore. Small gentle waves roll onto the pale sand.
A cloudless sky. AS: Ripple. Fresh air. Spine arching. Sternum to the sun.
Sitting and kneeling on the rocky, sandy beach, JH: Sun-baked, brown toned, deep bow into arch, prostrate.
the three dancers dive and roll their torsos :calming synthesizer :notes resound
solo, then in duets. :electronic voice Kate: Why make dances?
Alice: I've always had stuff to say, um, AS: Touch, pull back. JH: Interlocked arms with Laurel
Alice: I've always wanted to be able to say it in movement. LL: Familiar grip. LL: Open, spiral, hook,
Alice: So, I make dances, AS: Arch into contact. AS: Reaching, connnect. JH: Lines in the air
Alice: because they seem to me now to be the most meaningful way LL: take the weight
Alice: that I can understand the world that I live in, JH: Deep leans JH: on sand with Alice
Alice: my relationships to people, my -- AS: Planting, grounding. At home
Alice: It is the most powerful way JH: Nestled in crevices, JH: holding each other.
Alice: that I know to work through certain ideas. JH: Two faces exhale.
Alice: Like, certain ideas I want to work through in writing, JH: Elongated, crinkled
Alice: but certain ideas can only be most fully realized in movement.
Alice: And those are very often questions that are just
Alice: critical, I think,
Alice: critical, I think, to making a better world.
AD: Just at the water's edge, in duets, they share weight,
lean into and on each other, and dance, :alternating synthesizer tones
the wet sand clinging to them as they rock and lean.
Then, each holds a smile, :alternating synthesizer tones
looking directly into the camera for a moment. :deep marimba chimes JH: Joyful, rested.
Returning to the dance, Alice dips and raises her body
in concert with the frothy waves.
She stops, contemplates. Rocks at the shore from above.
A buoy in the Bay, the Golden Gate Bridge beyond.
Text: The viewing of the following film is for
informational, enlightenment and entertainment purposes only.
The choreography in the film is performed by professionals using
specially developed equipment and specialized techniques,
and is performed in a rehearsed and controlled environment.
Do not attempt to duplicate, re-create,
perform or imitate in any manner the same or similar choreography
or dance moves either at home or in any other environment.
The producers, directors, performers and others involved
in making the film, as well as PBS and its affiliated stations,
will not be responsible for any such injury or damage.
These are abbreviated credits. For the full credits, please visit the All Arts website.
A SAFETY THIRD PRODUCTION DIRECTOR: KATHERINE HELEN FISHER PRODUCER: SHIMMY BOYLE
FEATURING: JERRON HERMAN, LAUREL LAWSON,
CATHERINE A. NELSON, AND ALICE SHEPPARD
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: DEVON DONIS EDITOR: JOHN WALTER
ORIGINAL SCORE COMPOSITION AND PERFORMANCE: VANESSA GOULD
CHOREOGRAPHER: ALICE SHEPPARD CHOREOGRAPHIC COLLABORATORS: LAUREL LAWSON, JERRON HERMAN
DEAF CULTURE CONSULTATION: BRANDON KAZEN-MADDOX, MEL CHUA
SUBTITLES: BRANDON KAZEN-MADDOX & BODY LANGUAGE PRODUCTIONS
AUDIO DESCRIPTION: CHERYL GREEN
SUPPLEMENTAL DESCRIPTION: JERRON HERMAN, LAUREL LAWSON, AND ALICE SHEPPARD
SPECIAL THANKS TO RJ MUNA AND LEFT SPACE STUDIOS
Copyright 2021 Disability Dance Works, LLC DBA Kinetic Light
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