I not I invites the audience to venture into a world of the familiar unfamiliar. Which forms and meanings are left to discover when one disassociates the 'human' from the body and its gestures?". In this dance performance work, Sadler pushes the performers into the experience of being outside one's body, of living it as a foreign entity. Limbs and gestures cut loose gain a life and truth of their own, moving into the realm of uninhabited forms and meanings.
“For human beings who have lost every sense of naturalness, each single gesture becomes a destiny. And the more gestures lose their ease under the action of invisible powers, the more life becomes indecipherable.”
– Giorgio Agamben
Approximations of the human and the inanimate are a recurring trope in choreographer Colette Sadler’s work. From objects in the solo dDumY – another myself (2006), from dolls and prosthetic limbs in the group piece The Making of Doubt (2008), to props and the theatre apparatus in Musical (2009), Sadler’s work revolves around the following question: “Is it possible to extend the notion of agency beyond the human?”
In her new creation I Not I, this principle of reaching out into the inanimate is not achieved through extensions but literally embodied in gestures. Gestures inhabit a world between that which we recognize and that, which has no name. They linger on the threshold of language, they flirt with objecthood and deadliness. I Not I ventures into the familiar unfamiliar that manifests itself in the chaos of gesturing the inanimate.
I Not I creates hybrids by amplifying the peripheral bodies in oneself: animal, machine, object, mineral. It pushes the performers into the experience of being outside one’s body, of living it as a foreign entity. Limbs and gestures cut loose gain a life and truth of their own, moving into the realm of uninhabited forms and meanings. And even the theatre apparatus starts to gesture, as if it were sympathising with this collection of both human and nonhuman bodies and their “inanimate” gestures.
“Which forms and meanings are left to discover when one disassociates the ‘human’ from the body and its gestures?”, Colette Sadler wonders. “What are their gestures like? On what terms do these hybrid bodies now communicate? How do we identify the meaning of their gestures? How do they bend and twist the codes of what we consider to be ‘normal’ behaviour?”
Tramway Family Day: Impossible bodies
Sunday 11th March 10am – 4pm
Tramway 1 / Studio
Performance 1: 11am – 11.30am
Workshop 1: 12noon – 12.45pm
Performance 2: 2pm – 2.30pm
Workshop 2: 3pm – 3.45pm
Free to £2 each
Impossible Bodies aims to introduce children to contemporary performance through a fun, hands-on workshop and short performance presentation. Based on Colette Sadler’s performance, The Making of Doubt, the workshop will lead participants through an exploration of movement and transformation, facilitated by Colette Sadler and members of stammer productions.
Full Family Day programme announced mid-February.