I reflect on a season of short dance films in outdoor spaces in England in this new interview about how my movement style has developed, what I have learnt from the process of making these films, and some funny stories along the way.
It seems rather strange to be celebrating the end of Season 2 of footSTEPS with this video-interview. For a project that took quite a significant time to make, the slow release of these films seems to have flown by. Perhaps because, in the ever-changing climate of 2020, time has become oddly stretched and truncated simultaneously.
Reflecting on these dance films has been an interesting experience for me, particularly as we now find ourselves in another national 'firebreak' lockdown in Wales, due to the spread of COVID-19. My experiences, thoughts and feelings at the time of creation, don't always match with my feelings now. In some cases, I now feel suddenly very emotional about certain films.
In my blog post about the dance film at the No. 6 Heavy Anti-Aircraft Battery in Bristol, for example, I wrote about the impact of COVID-19 on my fitness and on my mental health, as I visibly struggled up a hill surrounded by pandemic-inspired graffiti. Whilst these thoughts and interpretations were very obvious to me upon making the film, other films evoked completely different ideas and images to me in the moment, and now ring a little asymmetrically in my mind.
The empty street of Vicars' Close in Wells, Somerset, now feels very different. Initially a logistical decision to go to the site early in the morning when no one would be around, I now walk around the streets of my own local area and find an eerily similar situation - here the streets are almost empty all of the time, as people stay in their homes due to the lockdown. Empty streets used to be a novelty, now they are the norm.
On the other hand, there are films that could be considered timeless - as I run through the green of Elton Giant Maize Maze in Gloucestershire, in a place out of time... or dancing in the water by Burnham-on-Sea Low Lighthouse. Here, I am lost in the moment - time is no object or setting, it's just me, the sand and the sea, offering an escape from what the world has become in 2020.
You can watch Season 2 in its entirety here.
In the Media
We've had a little bit more media attention this season. Back in September, I was interviewed by Eva Marloes for Welsh online culture publication Get The Chance. It was great to talk to Eva about how this project has provided an escape from lockdown and the current global situation. I particularly liked how she rounded up the article:
"We might do well to follow the example of footSTEPS and dance wherever and whenever we feel like it."
- Eva Marloes, Get The Chance
I'm all for that Eva! In October, we were also featured on the Arts Council Wales website. Written by our Director of Photography, Ian Abbott, the article gives a little sneak peak into upcoming films in Season 3. You can read the feature here.
Season 3: Wales
Season 3 of our dance films will return to Wales, with films in Carreg Cennen Castle, along a disused railway line and through the sand dunes at Merthyr Mawr. We'll be slowly releasing these in the coming weeks.
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Please be aware that all of our dance films for Season 3 were recorded prior to COVID-19 restrictions being tightened across the UK in September 2020, and prior to to Wales' national 'firebreak' which began on 23rd October 2020.
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