ABOUT THIS PROJECT:
Vital Matters is a new festival of contemporary dance and performance in Minneapolis featuring local artists. Initiated by the BodyCartography Project it will feature new work by collaborators Otto Ramstad, Olive Bieringa, Justin Jones, Anna Marie Shogren, Dolo McComb, Pramila Vasudevan, Katie Burgess, Sam Johnson, Vie Boheme, Katelyn Skelley, HIJACK, Young Dance, Dustin Haug and Willa Bartolomay and other special guests including DJ WZZ WNSHP. With your help it will take place October 20-23, 2016 at the Southern Theater, Minneapolis.
Stretch goal: We will extend our programming beyond the four day festival if we make an additional five hundred dollars before the campaign closes!
What is Vital Matters?
Vital Matters will engage with the vital materiality of our bodies –– our guts, our minds, our matter, body to body, a festival of embodied performance for Minneapolis.
Vital Matters will highlight contemporary makers in our community recognizing new aesthetic, somatic and performative practices. Together we will offer multiple entry points into the experience of dance.
Vital Matters is a call to attention! To pay attention to how audiences and artists use our bodies as a way to channel art works, as a way to connect to each other. It asks for you to put your body in a theater seat, for you to move through a workshop, to pulse at a dance party, to participate in a discussion. It’s a celebration of our bodies. It’s a festival!
From October 20-23 Vital Matters will present 4 evenings of performance preceded by 4 workshops. 13+ new dance works (including a family matinee) + 4 workshops + 2 artists talks + 3 dance parties. All of this is no small undertaking, so...
We need your support:
It is vital that we have your support and the necessary funds to complete this project in a way that resources all the people involved: artists, lighting designer, sound technician, producer, documenters, administrator + publicist.
This new project is an artistic exchange initiated by Olive Bieringa and Otto Ramstad with our long term collaborators Anna Marie Shogren, Justin Jones, and Dolo McComb and others who have worked with us. As an artistic team we create work that uses the materiality of the body, the direct physical experiences of living in our bodies, organized through the frames of performances and workshops. This approach makes our work unique locally and internationally. It gives us access to an unusual and diverse kind of movement invention, and generates transformative audience experiences.
Who will benefit?
The festival will offer opportunities for exchanges between artists and audiences amidst an intensely condensed revelry of dance. Dance uses our bodies to think about and speak about our lives in contemporary society.
Together we will offer workshops, performances (inside and outside the theater), artist talks, receptions and dance parties in the theater, creating multiple entry points into the experience of dance. This will benefit artists to feel their work in relation to other artists, long time dance lovers to soak in, to be inside of dance, and new audiences to get a snapshot of dance in Minneapolis.
This show will build on connections with new audiences we made during our recent work closer which took place in diverse public spaces across the Twin Cities. Some of these new audiences have never seen dance before, or never been exposed to experimental dance practices.
closer is a series of one-on-one dance performances and conversations that take place in public space and culminate in an evening length work and dance party in the theater. This project premiered across the Twin Cities in partnership with Northern Lights, Minnesota Museum of American Art, Walker Art Center, Loring Alley Rally, Red Eye Theater and Minneapolis City Hall over summer 2015.
How it works:
Support Vital Matters by helping us construct the festival from the ground up. You are the matter, the body made up by the meeting between artists and audiences. Your pledge insures the creation of new work and the possibility to participate in four days of movement workshops and inventive new dance works, artist talks and parties.
BodyCartography Project has always sought to create new works that speak in new ways to audiences. After doing all of these one-on-one performances, and conversations with all kinds of people it became clear that long time dance audiences and audiences new to dance alike have access to transformative experiences when given an opportunity for dialog and engagement. Based on this experience we decided instead of creating a singular BodyCartography work as our next project, we would make a festival that offers the diverse voices of the artists that have worked with since we moved here in 2001, to blow open the access points to our audiences.
Why a Kickstarter:
We want to engage you in the creation of this festival from the ground up. We want to pay all the artists involved to create extraordinary work and create the conditions to share their work at its best. This allows the artists to spend time developing their work, paying for studio rental, childcare, costumes, and their other collaborator fees such as dancers, costumes designers and composers and not worrying about the larger administrative issues of renting a venue and publicizing an event.
Anna Marie Shogren will create new work focusing on a highly somatic and improvisational movement practice supported by her nuclear community; combining this with a colloquial use of textiles and observation of aging bodies, her postfolk dances underscore social function and physical enjoyment.
Dolo McComb will be working with dance artists Kimberly Lesik, Scott Stafford and Bob Eisen. This new work is about the ability of dancing to transform and awaken the Universe Power in our bodies. Medicine, ecstasy, laughter; glancing at ritual through the magnifying glass of theatricality and some homemade pop music.
Otto Ramstad’s solo will draw lines from somatic learnings, in real time, between his great grandfather John Ramstad, who immigrated to Minnesota in 1911, Vermont based Judson era choreographer and inventor of contact improvisation Steve Paxton, and his recently deceased childhood dance teacher Suzanne River from Minnesota. This live performance with video travelogue will take us from Norway through Vermont to Minnesota and will be proximally intimate and physically immersive.
Justin Jones's "The Palestinian Chair, and Other Glorious Stress Positions" (working title). Sometimes my body is working for me, sometimes it is working against me. Sometimes it is working for others, sometimes it is working against others. "... and Other Glorious Stress Positions," examines the will of the body as it moves in concert and in conflict with the will of the self/mind and the will of the self/mind of others.
Olive Bieringa will create a new one-on-one performance work that will take place around the neighborhood of the Southern Theater. Audiences will have a low fi movie created just for them as they take a walk through the neighborhood. Special tickets will be available for this work and will be extremely limited.
Special guests include Pramila Vasudevan, La Vie Boheme, Sam Johnson, Katie Burgess, Katelyn Skelley, HIJACK, Young Dance, Dustin Haug and Willa Bartolomay and other Twin Cities dance luminaries.
Dreaming big has begun. Planning and rehearsing has begun. As soon as this Kickstarter campaign has successfully finished we will all dive deeper into the creative process knowing we are resourced to make this project a success. The festival will take place October 20-23, 2016. All rewards will be delivered between October and December.
Closing call to action:
We want to engage you in the creation of this Vital Matters from the ground up. It’s a dance and performance festival for the Twin Cities! It’s a celebration of our bodies. Please join us!
As a contributor you will receive a heartfelt thank you on BodyCartography’s website and facebook page and are invited to be the matter by contributing 2 or more seconds of movement to be included in our festival programming in the form of an emailed video clip that will be added to our Donor Dance Film and then played throughout the festival: a big, visual moving collage! We want you in Vital Matters!
Your clip can be funny, subtle, playful, serious, beautiful, fast, slow, preplanned or improvised, or all of that! Have fun, get creative!
Here's an example:
All backers who contribute $25 or more get reserved seating and pre-sale opportunities for Vital Matters.
At the $25 level you also get a ticket to one of the amazing workshops that are a part of Vital Matters. Workshops will include:
Core Kinetics with Vie Boheme (see description below)
Materials for the Spine
An introduction to Embodied Performance
Core Kinetics uses Vinyasa and Power yoga sequencing combined with movement and rhythm to melt space, time and sound together providing a unique means of being available in the present moment. The workshop elements emphasize the physicality of Yoga for a healthy and athletic body.
Vie Boheme's philosophy focuses on physically embodying the concepts we each do our best to use off the mat, for example, the core series of class is a physical manifestation of the theory of being strong from the inside out. I have worked with countless dancers, yogis and athletes to reach peek performance physically and mentally.
A very limited number of bodywork sessions are available at the $100 level:
- Olive Bieringa offers shiatsu and Body-Mind Centering®
- Dolo McComb offers deep tissue massage
- Otto Ramstad offers Body-Mind Centering®
Risks and challenges
Creating something from the ground up is always challenging. A festival requires a lot of time, energy and teamwork.
As performing artists in the USA we have to face the reality that we have not only have to create our work but we have to fundraise, self produce and market it also. Vital Matters proposes another model for Minneapolis in the context of an artist created festival where the work of production and marketing is shared. Let’s make and celebrate dance together!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)