Our penultimate performance at Aberystwyth Arts Centre last night had an enthusiastic response from the near sell-out audience, with people piling in for the post-show talk with the Company.
Students, audience members and reviewers took the opportunity to ask artistic directors Jim Ennis and Jessica Cohen and performers Sebastian Languener, Jess Haener, Alex Marshall-Parsons and Rosalind Brooks a multitude of questions after the show.
Addressing issues from sexuality and gender to Chelsea Hotel Residents and stories, the Company chatted at length with the audience, explaining the artistic process and inspiration behind the performance and explaining Earthfall’s immersive approach to performance through their free Smartphone app.
The Company are heading off to Bournemouth tomorrow for the final performance of Chelsea Hotel at Pavilion Dance. Below you can read a selection of what the Company had to say from our Twitter feed:
“The mattress is so uncomfortable and unforgiving!!” @sebastian_l_
“Silence and pauses in sound can be incredibly significant; you have to work out how best to use it in the overall dynamic” Jess Cohen
“We go into an empty space in silence to work things out. The music builds up naturally and gradually” @jimennis1
“As I worked more with the company our developing relationship got stronger; there is more truth in the performance” Jess Haener – performer
“Every performance has a new breath of life in it. As we tour & get to know one another that changes how we interact in stage” @AMarshallP
“There’s an element of autobiography in all of our work. We try and identify our own experiences with those we portray on stage” Jim Ennis
“We wanted to show an extraordinary building that housed extraordinary people to the audience” Jess Cohen artistic director
“#chelseahotel had a mix of people immigrants, artists, families, people gave birth & died there…” Jim Ennis artistic director
Post show talk filling up quick! Llawer o bobl I glywed y sgwrs ar ol y sioe! pic.twitter.com/IGsNkzclrE
At Salisbury Arts Centre the Chelsea Hotel performance was heralded by the work of Jigsaw Youth Dance, who have been working with Earthfall tutors Billy Brown and Hannah Darby.
Basing their ideas on sections of Chelsea Hotel repertoire, the young dancers were able to develop their own creative work, which they performed for the Chelsea Hotel audience as they awaited curtain-up.
“I’m really thrilled at the work the dancers have come up with,” said Artistic Director Jess Cohen. “They’ve developed some really interesting ideas and it looks fantastic.”
The workshops have provided the group not only with the opportunity to learn professional repertoire and unique choreography from trained professional dancers, but allowed them to showcase what they had learned and then see the source of the workshops live on stage.
Carrie Madgwick, Jigsaw founder and leader, has been working hard with the company to instil a professional ethos and standard within the group. We were delighted when the opportunity arose for Jigsaw to have a two-day residency with Earthfall and then support the company by performing a curtain raiser before “Chelsea Hotel”
The group worked solidly for two days to create a short but effective performance that challenged the conceptions of dance. In that time the group learned many new approaches to contemporary dance which they will take with them on their Jigsaw journey.
The group were proud to have been part of a new and one-off performance unique to Salisbury Arts Centre and Jigsaw.
Becka Davies, Youth and Education Officer, Salisbury Arts Centre
Artistic Director Jess Cohen travelled up to Coleg Ceredigion in Aberystwyth last week, with tutors Murilo Leite and Timothy Wilson, to run a week-long series of dance, theatre and music workshops with young people at the College.
The students, from a mix of performance disciplines, explored various facets of the choreography, composition and structure of the Chelsea Hotel performance in order to produce their own creative performance at the end of the week.
I loved working with the students at Coleg Ceredigion. We demanded a lot from them and sometimes their bodies really hurt, but they got through it and put on a wonderful performance. I’m full of admiration for the resident tutors who put their heart and soul into their work week-in and week-out.
Artistic Director Jess Cohen
Performing arts students performed guitar, bass and vocals, while media students documented the work on film and conducted Andy Warhol style interviews, which appear alongside the dance during final performance.
Working on basic lifts, counterbalances, contemporary movement and music, students examined new elements of performance, which will enhance their learning and development and build up their professional experience.
“Didn’t want the week to end – I want all weeks to be like this one. Earthfall residency has been top to bottom incredible”
James Baker, Performing Arts Student, Coleg Ceredigion
Chelsea Hotel is on its way to Aberystwyth Arts Centre tomorrow night for its penultimate performance in the Autumn tour.
Well we’re coming to the close of the Chelsea Hotel Autumn tour and it’s been all go for the past two months!
After opening night at Caernarfon’s Galeri we’ve taken the show, and our brand-new digital app to audiences across the UK; to Newport, Lincoln, Spalding, Plymouth, Canterbury, Bath, Bromsgrove, Oxford, Cardiff, Liverpool, London, and Salford.
Tonight we’re off to Edgehill in Manchester and then Thursday takes us to Salisbury Arts Centre for a pre-show curtain raiser with Jigsaw Youth Dance. You can read about the preparatory workshops with tutor Billy Brown below.
We’ve had some fantastic highlights along the way – from themed pre-show entertainment at Cardiff and Lincoln, to fantastic workshops with dance groups from all over the country. We’ve collated an impressive gallery of pictures from different venues as part of our #Chelseaview Twitter collection. Check it out by following us @earthfall.
The Chelsea Hotel app has let allowed the company to give the audience an interactive ‘bonus feature’ and it’s been really popular:
“I really enjoyed the extra dimensions that the app added to the show – it made me feel a part of the performance and it looks great!”
You can check out the reviews of the show on our Press Page and, if you’ve already seen the show, we’d love to hear your thoughts and there’s even a chance to win an Earthfall goody-bag by submitting your own review of the show, here.
You can still catch the show at Aberystwyth Arts Centre and Pavilion Dance in Bournemouth. Check out our Tour Dates page for more details – looking forward to seeing you there, and don’t forget to download the Chelsea Hotel Smartphone app for hidden extras after the show!
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