Anna – Black Is the Colour

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Oct 172016
 

I was an actress in a play Black is the Colour, which also was part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival. It’s the first production by Deafferent Theatre and a two Deaf-women play and performed entirely in Auslan with English subtitles. An Australian play written by Daniel Keene, it is about friendship, with at times hazy boundaries, between two women. Director Jess Moody said “Relationships are forged and lost through language. Tonight I put the language of survivors, of the Deaf community, and of women on the stage.” It was an extremely satisfying project to do as it gave me the opportunity to try out a new art-form (acting) working with people I have never worked with before and tackling complex themes such as domestic violence, loss, grief and memory especially seeing the statistics of Deaf survivors of domestic violence are alarmingly high.

Black is the Colour, Anna Seymour, 2016

If you want to know more about Deafferent Theatre, you can visit their website:

Deafferent Theatre

Upcoming projects

I have two upcoming projects; dancing in a silent film directed by dancer/film-maker Jacob Edwards and a performance art project with Nicola Gunn. Nicola Gunn is a Melbourne-based performer, writer, director and dramaturg. This project, The Interpreters, will be performed in English, French, Auslan and Bunwurrung against the backdrop of a French Mansion in Melbourne. This is a work about the act of interpreting, about changing words into meaning and back again.

It has been a very enriching year and I feel so lucky (and exhausted!). I hope there will be more opportunities like Claire Cunningham’s workshops as they are so important for artists at different stages in their career to do.

A big thanks to everyone 🙂

Anna

Anna – Distraction Society

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Oct 172016
 

Drumroll……I made my first choreographic work this year!

Distraction Society, Anna Seymour, 2016

Through the Melbourne Fringe’s COMPASS mentoring program, I choreographed a dance piece called Distraction Society for the Melbourne Fringe in September. Using Banksy’s graffiti artwork Mobile Lovers as a reference point, Distraction Society is a highly visual and physical dance work which examines the forces of attraction, attention and distraction in relationships.

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As a choreographer, I wanted to create a piece that was very physical and visual with no spoken text as I wanted to make this accessible for as many people as possible and make it something that almost everyone regardless of age and background can relate to i.e. that we now live in the Age of Distraction where we all are expected to participate in.

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Things evolved very quickly and what are the consequences for us? I created a series of duets with my collaborator Amanda Lever, exploring giving attention to the distraction, the attraction of distraction and using distraction as focus. It was a successful season with full houses each show and positive reviews. I was paired up with a mentor, Vanessa Pigrum who is the Executive Director of Chunky Move.

Here is a short (2mins) trailer of Distraction Society; Distraction Society

Here’s a review from Plus Ones:

Melbourne Fringe: ‘Distraction Society’

Anna – KAGE

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Oct 172016
 

Only one week after Under My Skin finished, I went straight into another project with KAGE (a dance and physical theatre company based in Melbourne) for the second development of Out of Earshot which will premiere in 2017. I worked with three other dancers (Gerard Van Dyck, Elle Evangelista and Tim Ohl), and with drummer Myele Manzanza, under the direction of Kate Denborough. This work explores how everyone experiences sound, rhythm and silence differently. Sound isn’t something that is exclusive to hearing people. It’s something everyone and anyone can experience may it be through the ears or the body or as an insight. The same applies to silence.

KAGE, Anna Seymour, 2016

Silence is a sound and it has substance. It’s not an absence or emptiness. Again Claire’s workshop really helped me personally in this project. Sometimes I feel uncomfortable about whether I am being hired for my artistic skills or the fact I am Deaf. Even though Kate is an intelligent and sensitive choreographer, I had to steer the focus from ME and DEAFNESS to the other dancers and OUR individual and collective perspectives and experiences on sound and rhythm.

Anna – Under My Skin

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Oct 172016
 

Hi there!

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I’ve had a busy but fantastic year. I am so grateful for starting off the year with a week in beautiful and warm Fremantle doing an intensive with Claire Cunningham. It really changed the way I think about my work, and myself as an artist. Claire gave e the confidence to reclaim my voice and not to feel like I have to oblige with the generally-accepted idea of what dance is and who can be a dancer. That confidence infiltered into all of my dance projects this year. It has been very positive and empowering. I often revisit Claire’s workshop materials and insights to help guide my artistic practice.

So this year!

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Not long after the intensive with Claire, it was straight into rehearsals for Under My Skin with The Delta Project. I co-founde The Delta Project in 2012 with Jo Dunbar, Deaf choreographer from the UK. The Delta Project is a Melbourne-based dance company employing Deaf and hearing dancers. The Delta Project has had two collaborations; Collisions in 2012 with Jodie Farrugia and Jo Dunbar and Under My Skin in 2014 & 2016 with Lina Limosani (DT) and Jo Dunbar.

 

Under My Skin was performed at Next Wave Festival at the Arts House in North Melbourne and was a very successful season. We worked with media artist Rhian Hinkley and sound designer Russell Goldsmith who created images and sound merging access into the aesthetic design. They made sound visual for the Deaf performers and audiences. Goldsmith created sound that can be felt rather than heard which appeals to the body rather than the eardrum.

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Here is a trailer:

Under My Skin

UNDER MY SKIN, Anna Seymour, 2016