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The Global Film Village: A New Voice at the RedCat’s New Original Work’s Festival by Marla Lewin

The Toronto International Film Festival has announced that they will be featuring a special section dedicated to multi-media performance this year. The RedCat’s NOW Festival in Los Angeles focused on eight original works, all but one by women, and the results assure us that women have a role as artists in this century. Isadora Duncan would be proud to see the mix of dance, music, image, and all of the seven arts brought together into one presentation fully realized as she envisioned. Go girls go.

 

Years ago I wrote and produced a play, Reflections of Love, with Isadora as one of the main characters. This multi media presentation was performed at the historic 800 seat Plaza Theatre in Palm Springs in 1990. It included a silent film from the last century, original music, original dance, and a one act play. Recently Allegra Fuller Synder, Professor Emerita of Dance, former Director of the pioneering Graduate Program in Dance Ethnology at UCLA and Buckminister Fuller’s daughter sent me her short film on Isadora, and I was reminded how she had declared, “I see  America dancing.”  Merce Cunningham, considered the father of contemporary dance in America passed recently. Cunningham along with his composer partner, John Cage drew from abstract painting, and broke through classical barriers. He was a student of the great Martha Graham. This years festival continues these themes and efforts.

 


At the RedCat, Program Two, I felt we were watching a new voice at work.  Carole Kim’s live video performance, featured acclaimed Butoh artist Oguri, combined and integrated modern video techniques with centuries old dance disciplines. This work succeeded in collapsing boundaries between movement, sound, image, and space.  The piece begins with dancer-choreographer Oguri, as he is elevated above the stage, light shadows of his movements illuminate the stage, through a screen.  The media artist and her collaborators use technology to twist the myth of Narcissus, through the focus of the male performer in his various forms, live and on screen, shifted through light and space, with sound.

 

 Syphon (c) 2009 by Carole Kim and was provided by the artist.  

I felt that she and and Oguri were onto something fresh, expansive, riveting, and somehow zen like, in their creative approach. Carole has exhibited widely in the US and abroad.  Recent venues include the Museum of Modern Art, New York, Museum of Contemporary Art-Los Angeles, the Getty Center, Springwave Festival/LIG Performing Arts Hall (Seoul, Korea) plus numerous festivals and performance series.  This summer she will be in residence at Montalvo Arts Center, Saratoga, NY, and a Master Artist-in-residence at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in  Florida. 

 

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About MarlaLewinGFV

Lewin Marla
(Global Film Village)

Marla is a producer, playwright, screenwriter, publicist and now a journalist. She attends 12 to 20 film festivals per year. She has spoken on filmmaking at many festivals including Cannes and SXSW.

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