Originally debuted in September 2010, “Raíces y Alas” was conceived as a full-length show depicting the interaction between traditional flamenco, its varying cultural influences, and its contemporary evolution. For its third year, “Raíces y Alas” will present a program entitled “Raíces y Alas – Colores (Colours)”.
The concept of the show was inspired by colours, emotions, and music. Artists (musicians, dancers, painters) will interpret sound and music in different manners. One of the most intriguing to my intellectual and analytical brain is the “sound” or “flavour” of colour. OR concurrently, the “colour” of certain pieces of music.
Take a moment to listen to your favourite piece of music, or even press “random shuffle” on your ipod:
When you listen to that piece of music, what colours spring to mind?
What emotions do you feel?
For this show we started with the colour. Each of the five soloists drew a colour from a hat (literally, I took my hat off my head and put eight Crayola coloured pieces of paper inside). What colours we drew surprised us; some of us got EXACTLY the colour we had been hoping for (was it manifested? do our flamenco superheroes have x-ray vision?), and others were caught off guard (WHAT am I going to choreograph to THAT?!?).
We then sat around, and with the assistance of a bottle of very nice red wine, we discussed, argued, and brainstormed emotions and adjectives to which each colour could refer. How does the colour make you feel? What kinds of sounds, tones, key signatures, instruments do you imagine would portray that colour? Could there be a spiritual aspect to the colour?
What does the colour RED say to you?
Red often gets labelled with the emotions of anger or love, and adjectives such as angry, passionate, sensual, and fiery. It is stimulating. In China it is the colour of joy and prosperity. Red is also the colour of blood, which in turn alludes to vitality. Flamenco bulerias make me think of red, as does the music of Piazzola or Bizet.
Now, the hard part, each dancer had a mission before them: choreograph a flamenco number (or palo) that would inspire the audience to see, or feel, the colour they had drawn from the hat. I felt like I had given some of the artists the hardest piece of homework they had ever had!
Michelle went completely quiet, the cogs and wheels already turning. Kasandra, on the other hand, delved into stories of her early years as a violinist, where she had to PLAY colours. Dancing the colour could be easy for her, or then again, even more of a challenge. She could do all her background work, but she still felt the same challenge as us: could we inspire the colour? Oscar put forth perhaps the most insightful pause for thought – life experience leads us through different coloured periods (think Picasso and his Blue Period).
“Raíces y Alas: Colores”
November 2nd and 3rd, 2012 @ 7:30pm
Scotiabank Dance Centre, Faris Family Studio
Tickets available through www.ticketstonight.ca