Laura Dajao was offered the chance to curate a night on the Sadler's Wells Lilian Baylis Stage, using all the relevant spaces in the Lilian Baylis Studio on Wednesday 27th November 2013.
Photo: Marketing Material from Sadler's Wells, Lilian Baylis
She chose to base the whole night on the condition that she has: Multiple Sclerosis, using stimuli such as a a tube map of MS and offering artists the opportunity to create work based on their interpretation of the condition or their experience with people who have the condition or indeed their experience of their interaction with Laura Dajao, as someone who suffers with MS.
Map designed by Gavin Giovannoni (QMUL University)
The Interactive Space:
The night was planned to attempt to be inclusive, i.e. giving the audience the opportunity to take the access route down toward the studio (because usually you take the stairs down to the LBS and the wheelchair users and ambulant audience always tend to get separated), giving audience the opportunity to try out the tasks in the interactive space before the show, during the interval and after the show - things like travelling in a wheelchair and collecting various items whilst being sat in the chair. The colours of the maps corresponded to the route that the audience could take, allowing them to make their own journey through the space.
The Garden Court Cafe also housed an array of different materials to be felt and explored as audience members were waiting for the house to open, but it was also open during the interval and after the show for audience to view.
Keanu Wilson performing Human - Photo by Camilla Greenwell
In the performance space, as audience made their way through the access route, THE DRIVE, a video played detailing an account of Laura Dajao's journey from home to Sadler's Wells Lilian Baylis Studio - the video was filmed and edited by Shakti Zapata with music from Jinn Ko.
During the interval, this promo video made by Ten K Mega Productions screened, detailing the involvement of dancers and cast for Dear Madame Myelin, choreographed by Jole Pasquale aka PJ, under the direction of Ten K Mega:
The night led on to performances created and performed by talented artists hand-picked by Laura Dajao, who briefed them and gave them the stimuli and free-reign to create anything they wanted given the contact of the show. In commissioning the acts, Laura also encouraged them to think outside of the "box" and try things that were different, trying to create art that was cross-collaborative, taking artists out of their comfort zones and pushing them to think differently about the art they were creating.
The Line up of the Show included:
HAKEEM ONIBUDO- directing and choreographing a re-work of Human specifically for Wild Card, originally made and performed at Live Vibe: Politically Correct?! @ Rich Mix Cultural Foundation 2012.
KEANU WILSON and Laura Dajao - Dancers
Hakeem Onibudo, Laura Dajao and Keanu Wilson @ Rich Mix after Rehearsal
Laura Dajao, Jeni Draper and Jazz Bailey during the Dress Rehearsal
- Photo by CLO Photography
CHI-LIN NIM, CHANELLE HALL AND OKTAWIA PETRONELLA - performing Be Yourself, a mixture between theatre, dance and music, provided by the artists, writing their own scripts, lyrics and music for this specific night.
Chi-Lin Nim, Chanelle Hall and Oktawia Petronella performing Be Yourself in Tech Rehearsal- Photo By Camilla Greenwell
STEPHANIE VEZMAR, HAYLEY OVENS, NAOMI TURNER, MARTINA TAVELLA and TOMOMI KOSANO - Dancers
CODA DANCE COMPANY during Tech rehearsal - Photo by CLO Photography
SONITUS provided Autumn Leaves as the musical backdrop for this piece
ARRON STURROCK (Drummer), DEIN MOORE (Guitarist/Vocalist/Lyricist), NATHAN CHAN (Guitarist/Keyboardist/Arranger), RUSSELL BALOGUN (Vocalist/Vocal Director)
The Dear Madame Myelin cast and Laura Dajao after a rehearsal @ Rich Mix -
Photo arranged by Laura Dajao
SARDINES DANCE COLLECTIVE performed Me, Me, Me?and You?! Orginially choreographed for C12 Dance Theatre's platform Emerge 13 @ The Space. Choreographed by Charlene Low and Laura Dajao
Charlene Low and Laura Dajao performing Me, Me, Me... and You?!
- Photo by Camilla Greenwell
LAURA DAJAO performed a re-work of her solo Marionette, originally made and performed for East London Dance's Blueprint 2013.
Laura Dajao performing Marionette - Photo by Camilla Greenwell
ON THE INTERACTIVE SPACE:
"Great to try out a wheelchair, a chair by elbow pads would have helped me to get Low to try them. As Atos told me I'd have no problems in propelling one (wheelchair) manually, now I can say from experience, that's not true!"
"Made you think"
"Made me realise how scary it might feel and own self perception changes, experiencing a wheelchair and realising how strong you need to be to manouvre your own body. I will take away with me the feeling of terror of waring the glasses with obscured vision"
"Eye-opening to have a physical experience"
"Amazing, thought provoking"
Anonymous - Audience Members
ON THE SHOW:
"A show like this brings focus onto MS and othe disabilities and people how brave they must become to cope with everything that life throws at them, I've learnt how inspirational Laura has become."
Irena Petronella - Audience Member
"Each piece in the performance gave me a lot to think about and was very enjoyable to watch."
Faye Rathe - Audience Member
REVIEWS OF THE SHOW:
"Signing has always seemed to me a very lyrical and fascinating way of converting verbal language into movement, and (Jeni) Draper's meditating presence between (Laura) Dajao and soul singer Jazz Bailey added another dimension to layers of physical meaning in the piece"
Jaime Robles - Journalist at Bachtrack.com