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Turbine Hall
Turbine Hall
(Ana, Ayala, Bruno, Jeannie, Phil)

Sun (Bruno, Jeannie)

South Bank
South Bank (Ana)

TATE MODERN - January 2004

This improvised piece formed part of the ongoing research and development of Café Reason's Cities Project - a major concept involving all the birth-cities of the participants.

It was undertaken as an exercise in 'guerilla butoh' , wherein the dancers arrive unannounced in their chosen location and improvise in response to the urban environment, with equal attention to how the presence of their dance impacts on that environment.

At the Tate Modern, Olafur Eliasson's The Weather Project dominated the Turbine Hall, with representations of the sun and sky and a fine mist that permeated the space, as if creeping in from outside. The giant sphere representing the sun was made up of hundreds of mono-frequency lamps which transformed the visual field around it into a vast duotone landscape. In this altered environment the gallery visitors sat or lay on the ground to gaze at their reflections in the mirrored ceiling, or moved across it with more awareness of themselves in space than ordinarily. For butoh dancers to join this population and take the movement to the next level, seemed absolutely a part of that space and that moment.

The subsequent improvisation on the edge of the river Thames beneath the Millennium Bridge was in great contrast. Here our forms were silhouetted against the planes and angles of the cityscape beyond, and people observing from the bank and the bridge were far more curious/bemused than they had been when we performed in a designated "art" environment.