ABOUT: THEY GATHER

Responding to shared and personal need, crisis and underbellies of now, ‘They Gather’ creates gatherings: in vulnerability, in celebration, to be heard, to find meaning.

Blending visceral and sensitive movement with original soundscapes and voice, 'They Gather' asks us to engage with each other, our environment and our humanity. 

‘They Gather' is an international multimodal and interdisciplinary project creating ‘gatherings’ of people, action, dance, sound and music. These interrelated performances explore the boundaries between audience, participant and  performer in public, festival and cultural spaces subsequently creating dialogue with environments, societies, politics, histories and creating speculative futurologies'They Gather' aims to empower and create dialogue around the complexities and polarities of contemporary living.

'They Gather':

BRIDGET FISKE & JOSEPH LAU with STELIOS MANOUSAKIS & STEPHANIE PAN

and COLLABORATING PERFORMERS.

‘They Gather’ was developed through: observations formed across 20 years of socially and politically engaged artistic practice, ideas and reflections on the relationship between the individual and the collective, and being inspired by Nonviolent Communication and the feminist philosophy “the personal is political”.

 

“They Gather...has the potential to encapsulate global politics and humanity's empathy in intimate and bespoke site activations, in theatre performances and community engagement programs.  The work places people at its core coupled with an exquisite immersive soundscape. It is visually stunning and an important contribution to the cannon of performance art”

Kate Usher, Festival Director, Supercell Festival Of Contemporary Dance

 

ABOUT: WORKS/MODULES

'They Gather' currently consists of the following modules:  'An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full body workout radio play', 'Corpus Alimentation', 'Everyday Freedoms' and 'Lost In Feeling'. 

See further information below & visit our GALLERY for video and more.

More gatherings will be developed in the future including 'Entertaining A Small Place' and 'Story Of A Found Tree'.

 
An Absurdist Archive of Isolation_ a ful

Image design by Dartsia Liuba

'An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full body workout radio play'

Listen. Read. Do.

Become immersed in this experiential and genre-blurring new work for solo audiences at home.

Your movement, electronic music and contemporary storytelling unfold, overlap and transform, creating a new imagining of the very place you are right now.

There is space to move with fury, to fall into the softness of cushions and to collapse into the folds of time. It is all as you choose.

‘An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full body workout radio play’ is a work to listen to and a work to read, both to do.

 

We are thrilled that 'An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full-body workout radio play' will be presented by the following organisations. 

 

The Lowry (Feb 18-Mar 7)

Read more and book here: https://thelowry.com/whats-on/an-absurdist-archive-of-isolation/

 

&

 

The Place & Chisenhale Dance’s How Do We Tune Into Sensation? festival (18-21 Feb). The festival features online works that reflect on how dance & performance can remind us of what makes us feel alive. Visit https://www.theplace.org.uk/whats-on/collections/how-do-we-tune-sensation for details

*Note ‘An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full body workout radio play’ runs to Mar 7

'An Absurdist Archive of Isolation: a full body workout radio play'

Creators: Bridget Fiske / Joseph Lau / Stelios Manousakis / Stephanie Pan

Producers: Project Auske / Stichting Modulus / Bridget Fiske / Joseph Lau

UK Independent Producer: Deb Ashby

Supported using public funding by: the National Lottery through Arts Council England, and Stroom Den Haag

Created with the support of The Lowry

Also supported by: The Lowry Centre for Advanced Training and Upasana Arts

 

Photo by Eamonn Sweeney, CreativeImageworx

'Corpus Alimentation'

Part documentary, part science fiction, part ritual: audience gather for an immersive experience of electronic sounds, contemporary vocals and evocative dance.

How to survive a falling lift, a mother’s story of her newborn’s urgency to feed, how to repot a plant and an account of the person who survived the greatest free fall in history all become metaphors for a state of emergency.

 

Vulnerabilities, scarcity and survival provide potent threads for being with the physiological needs that drive reactions to flock, to protect, to shelter, of fight or flight. 

The monologue about breastfeeding...delivered into a microphone suspended from the ceiling ...created a visceral response to the difficulties of the political topics being presented in the work...'

('Corpus Alimentation' audience member)

 

Photo by Eamonn Sweeney, CreativeImageworx

'Everyday Freedoms'

A durational work that looks at our need for freedom and where, when and how this exists and is expressed. 

 

Engaging deliberate & incidental audiences in public spaces, 'Everyday Freedoms' proposes states of being while questioning ideas about value, systems, and freedoms. It is an exploration of physical and intangible containment, of boundaries between collective responsibility and the individual as well as shifting needs.

‘ I could have watched variations and developments within the entire work all day - for hours’  

(‘Everyday Freedoms’ audience member)

 
 

Photo by SBeausy Photography, www.stephbeausaert.com

'Lost In Feeling'

A mass public participation work for audience, community and artists exploring our need to connect to others, to be seen and to be heard, 'Lost In Feeling' re-imagines being in a large gathering (e.g. a demonstration, a celebration) where the self is both lost within and empowered by being part of a mass gathering.

 

Occupying public space with bodies, sound and the use of localised FM radio networks, the choreography emerges through a performed score that instigates and investigates swarm behaviours through embodied algorithmic thinking.

‘Feeling very valued and supported...not feeling the need to censor my response to any of the tasks.'

('Lost In Feeling' community participant)

 

ABOUT: US

'They Gather’ is created by a collective of artists with respected histories in dance, music, sound, interactive design, installation, performance art and facilitation. As artists with global experiences they are driven to create work that has international dialogue and relevance but local meaning. The artists have histories in politically engaged theatre and dance, socially engaged projects with a variety of communities (including with underrepresented and at risk communities) and are respected for their rigour and innovation in their fields of artistic practice.

‘They Gather’ is co-created by Bridget Fiske and Joseph Lau with Stelios Manousakis and Stephanie Pan. All artists have broad and respected portfolios of work. Recent credits and awards include:

Fiske and Pan both with extensive creative histories with Belarus Free Theatre on various international touring productionns (Fiske as Choreographic and Rehearsal Director and Pan as Performer/Collaborator). 

Fiske having received commissions from the EU consortium BeSpectACTive! amongst many other and was recently Choreographic and Rehearsal Director on the acclaimed ‘Counting Sheep Staging A Revolution’ (VAULT Festival London 2019).

Lau has created works commissioned by FascinatE (BBC, Technicolor and University Of Salford), the EU consortia Dance Channels and Moving Dance Forward amongst others.

Pan's album ‘Have Robot Dog Will Travel’ has received universal critical praise including  skug’s #1 Experimental Album of 2018 ‘The most breathtaking work of 2018!’ (Skug, Austria) – Alfred Pranzl). Pan was also featured on the cover of Gonzo (circus) magazine (the leading Dutch language magazine for contemporary music).

Manousakis has created new works for ZKM Karlsruhe and Seattle Art Museum among others. His compositions have received international awards: Gaudeamus, ECPNM, Cittá de Udine/Italian SenateC.

 

MORE INFORMATION

The artists involved in 'They Gather' have histories spread across Australia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea, Greece, Spain, Taiwan, the UK, the USA and the Netherlands. Diverse experiences of the world and cultural backgrounds allow each artist in 'They Gather' to share a common yet contradictory need to respond to their globalised experiences, whilst remaining relevant to their localities and personal histories.

Creative team members also possess study backgrounds extending beyond the arts (in commerce, mathematics, psychology, theatre, linguistics and education) that offer nuanced perspectives when addressing the complexities of the issues the work addresses. 

'They Gather' thus draws from a large pool of forms, education and living experiences to provide outcomes that reach and affect participants and audiences from all walks of life in meaningful and impactful ways.

'They Gather' would like to acknowledge the contributions of Storm Helmore, Stephanie Pokoj, Courtney Scheu, advisors and collaborating community to the creative development of the work.

 
 
  • BRIDGET FISKE

    Co-creator/ Choreographer/ Director/ Performer

  • JOSEPH LAU

    Co-creator/ Choreographer/ Director/ Performer

  • STELIOS MANOUSAKIS

    Co-creator / Composer/ Sound Artist / Performer

  • STEPHANIE PAN

    Co-creator / Composer/ Sound Artist / Performer

  • CHARLES BALL

    Collaborating Performer

  • CHLOE LANHAM

    Collaborating Performer

  • KRISTIAN SANTIC

    Collaborating Performer

  • SAMMIE WILLIAMS

    Collaborating Performer

  • EN RUI FOO

    Australian Producer

  • Deb Ashby

    UK Independent Producer

 

PRESENT: Programming & Partnerships

DO:

Dive deeper & Participate

SEE: Performances &

Events

 
 

PRESENT: Programming & Partnerships

Please contact us to discuss how 'They Gather' can be presented or developed in response to place, context and event.

Photos by Eamonn Sweeney, CreativeImageworx

 

DO: Diver Deeper & Participate

As we continue to develop 'They Gather' we look forward to sharing about more opportunities to participate and be in dialogue with the work here.

 

Stay in touch & engage with opportunities via our social media feeds on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

WORKSHOP W/ FISKE & LAU

Saturday December 7, 2019, 11:00 to 18:00

WILDHAWK Studios, 52 Newton St, Manchester, M1 1ED

 

Join internationally respected choreographers/ directors Bridget Fiske & Joseph Lau as they share improvisation processes, performance philosophies and scores from their current collaborative project THEY GATHER. 

 

This workshop is suitable for individuals of all practice backgrounds interested in improvisation and creative processes with a physical research base.

Book here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/workshop-with-bridget-fiske-joseph-lau-tickets-81218279059

To date the creative team of 'They Gather' has delivered workshops, created new works and facilitated conversations engaging professional artists, emerging artists, young people and people curious about the project. These activities have utilised creative processes and considerations from 'They Gather'.

 

Please contact us for more information on our engagement & learning offer. 

 

To date the creative team have delivered the following workshops and projects:

*A masterclass during HWY Festival at La Boite Theatre Company (AUS)

*A workshop and conversation during Supercell Festival Of Contemporary Dance (AUS)

*Creative community consultation as part of 'Lost In Feeling' (AUS)

*A choreographic and performance project with Year 11 dance students of Queensland Academy Creative Industries (AUS)

*A choreographic and performance project as part of ATOM Choreographic Series 3 (BG)

*'Snow' commissioned by University of Salford (UK)

*Open training and creative workshops for professional artists e.g as part of projects such as HOME Centro Coreographica (IT)

What participants of open training for professional artists have said about their experience:

'Some great tools to help artists think outside the box and develop ways of using the body outside technical forms - leading to innovative movement and forms of expression.'

'New/fresh approaches to technical training... Really fun classes which allowed me to move and have a dance with the beautiful Brisbane community as well as attain a high level knowledge...from professionals.'

'I personally felt my dancing, teaching and creativity was revitalised by these classes. The learnings from these classes fed into every element of my dance practice.'

Photo by Nadia Milford

SEE: Performances & Events

Upcoming and past performances and events

  • 'They Gather' at Supercell Festival Of Contemporary Dance 2019.

    'They Gather' was distributed across spaces of Brisbane during Supercell Festival Of Contemporary Dance 2019: from the Gaswroks Plaza, to empty shops in the Valley Metro to the Brisbane Powerhouse. Read more hear:

    https://supercelldancefestival.com/they-gather

    Photo by Eamonn Sweeney (CreativeImageworx)

  • New module in development 'Entertaining A Small Place'

    A new module in development 'Entertaining A Small Place' was presented as part of 'Watch US Dance' at University of Salford on November 8, 2019.

    Performed by Bridget Fiske. Choreographed & Directed by Bridget Fiske & Joseph Lau. Composed & Performed by Stephanie Pan.

    By some form of accident Bridget was Miss Junior Showgirl at the Kyabram Show circa 1985. This is where this begins.

    A work about parading, grief, survival and beauty.

    Photo by Brian Slater

  • Joseph Lau at ATOM Choreographic Series #3, Bulgaria

    In the summer of 2019, Joseph Lau spent 10 days as a choreographer as part of the international choreographic event ATOM Choreographic Series #3 in Bulgaria, run by ATOM Theatre. Joseph worked with over 30 emerging and experienced dance artists to create 'A Study Of Many' using themes, scores and processes from 'They Gather'.

    Photo by Photo Corps

 
 

CREDITS

The support of funders, partners, advisors and contributors is extremely valued in the realisation of 'They Gather'. Thank you to the following bodies, organisations, businesses and individuals for your significant contributions.

Lead Producers

Current & Previous Funders/Partners

THE LOWRY CENTRE FOR ADVANCED TRAINING

This project is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland.

Thank-you

Ian Dearden (Contemporary Social Issues Advisor)

Robert Lachowicz (Community Lawyer)

Kate Fiske (Gateway Health)

'Lost In Feeling' community participants

Peers who have provided ongoing critical dialogue and feedback

Photography & Video

Photography and video on this site by:

Bridget Fiske, Lenka Flory, En Rui Foo, Joseph Lau, Nadia Milford, Sbausy Photography -www.stephbeausaert.com, Eamonn Sweeney - CreativeImageworks and Sammie Williams.

 
 

CONTACT

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Photo by Eamonn Sweeney, CreativeImageworx