We are currently developing Dracula’s Garden , an interdisciplinary art series including brief dance poems, poetry, and photography inspired by themes in Gothic literature. This series uses the Gothic genre to explore and critically investigate themes of beauty ideals, the marginalization of things and persons deemed ‘deformed,’ the narratives of the grotesque, and the othering of difference.
We have been working on creation of new dance work for Dracula’s Garden series. Contemporary ballet/pointe dance labs, hosted by Voirelia in 2018 and 2019, provided opportunities for professional and advanced contemporary dancers to participate in the creative process, forge new collaborations, and explore their artistry and creativity.
During the labs, we explored image-, impulse-, and literature-prompted movement urges and choices. We worked with themes, images, and personages from Gothic literature to inspire an atmosphere of creative movement. We explored novel and unusual use of pointe shoes, including on feet, hands, on other body parts, and symbolically. Some of the goals for these labs included enhancing processes that assist dancers in connecting to creativity, discovering new impetus for movement, and exploring unfamiliar movement qualities. These labs were designed and facilitated by Voirelia’s Artistic Director, Alina Sotskova.
Photos by Jason Kirkness from the contemporary ballet dance labs in Vancouver, BC:
Photos by Alina Sotskova and Ian Sparks from previous mini-lab for Dracula’s Garden with Broken Rhythms Victoria dancers and other independent dance artists in Victoria, BC: