Artist Selene States and choreographer Ryan François are working on a b/w 16mm dance film entitled Syncopation exploring the differences between 1940's and contemporary swing dance.
The final film will be 6 minutes in length. The routine will consist of two variations developed in both a 1940's and a contemporary style. World-class swing dancers Moe Sakan and Remy Kouakou Kouame will perform the routine to a Slim Gaillard tune.
Award-winning cinematographer Tim Sidell will film the dancers from above in a bird's-eye view and from below shot through a glass floor. Costume designer Lise Marker will create hybrid contemporary-period costumes that hint at shifting perceptions of time.
The film builds on the aesthetic developed by Francis Picabia's 1924 Surrealist film Entr'acte, and Will Jason's 1944 cult classic short Groovie Movie, both of which use dancers' footwork shot from beneath a glass floor.
Syncopation brings a team of experts on vintage aesthetics together to shoot a new angle of the beautiful classic theme of dance viewed through a glass floor.
We need your help to raise $5000 to build the largest plate glass dance floor since these shots were taken in the early 20th century. Your contribution will go towards the construction and installation of the glass floor's steel frame and scaffolding so that Moe and Remy can safely perform their routine.
For the steps you take to help out, we offer our thanks in the form of film credits, stills prints, as well as the opportunity for you to dance on the floor yourselves.
Shown at dance events and international art galleries, the final film will be synchronously projected on the floor and ceiling in a film installation, as well as distributed on-line.
Every pledge gets us more of a foothold on the final film project Syncopation, so, please pledge as much as you can and be a part of this very special project!
Director: Selene States (DE/UK/USA) is an artist working with film and video. Her work investigates nostalgia and anachronistic aesthetics, with solo exhibitions in 2012 dedicated to swing dance and vintage revival such as in her Swing Shoe Shop at the State Museum of Fine Art Baden-Baden and Frigidaire at the Kunstverein Friedrichshafen. http://www.selenestates.com
Choreographer: Ryan François (UK) is considered to be one of the foremost authorities on vernacular swing and jazz dance of the 1920's, 1930's and 1940's. His resume includes numerous dance titles, international film, TV and theater productions such as BBC's Strictly Come Dancing, Disney's Swing Kids and Tony nominated Broadway musical Swing. http://ryanfrancois.com/RFX/Home.html
Lead Dancer: Remy Kouakou Kouame (FR) is a swing dancer and international teacher, whose titles include World Boogie Woogie Champion. Known for his loose style, he has frequently worked with Ryan François, including on the Slow Club video Two Cousins, a tribute to Al Minns and Leon James. https://www.herrang.com/teachers/remy-kouakou
Follow Dancer: Moe Sakan (JP/UK) is an international title-winning dancer and Herräng teacher, whose passionate enthusiasm for all things vintage has her best-known for her quirky interpretations of authentic period choreography. https://www.herrang.com/teachers/moe-sakan
Director of Photography: Tim Sidell (UK) is a DOP working with artist's film. He received Fujifilm's 2009 nomination for 'Best Cinematography' and is an enthusiast for period lighting and analogue cinematography techniques. http://www.timsidell.com/
Production Assistant: Asia Bas (DK/PL). Working both as a performer and production manager, Bas has the amazing capacity to juggle the practical with the greater picture. Production management for The People Speak; performance in States' film Frigidaire, and Tino Sehgal's current Unilever Series Commission, Tate Modern. http://thepeoplespeak.org.uk/blog/2010/10/21/asia-bas/
Costume: Lise Marker (DK/UK) works internationally as a production designer for film and theater. With her knack for combining vintage and contemporary designs, her work has been commissioned by the likes of the Puppini Sisters and Matthew Barney. For a visual sounding board of the costume design on Pinterest, check out: http://pinterest.com/selenestates/syncopation-costume-design/
Sound Design: Sam Duffy (UK), is a jazz musician, sound recordist and engineer at Queen Mary University. She has worked with States on productions Frigidaire and Swing Shoe Shop. http://uk.linkedin.com/in/samduffy
Disambiguation: The aerial view shots featured in this video are by Busby Berkeley, from 'Gold Diggers of California' 1933, and are used here as an inspirational model to illlustrate the cinematography of 'Syncopation'.
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