Posts in Category: Dance

Elephant by Sina Seiler

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Sina Seiler of sinasan Film und Medienkunst (sinasan Film & Mediaart) is both filmmaker and author here. According to her description on Vimeo,

The Poetry Film is based on the poem “Elephant” by Sina Seiler and visualizing inner rooms, what the poem is expressing by words metaphorically. “Elephant” expresses an inner transformation of the protagonist caused by the encounter of love. The self as a house, every room representing feelings and moods of subconsciousness.

The protagonist is dancing through inner rooms, illustrating sequences of dream, expressing feelings and moods.

It was screened at ZEBRA last month (among other screenings, listed on the sinasan website) as part of the Dreiklang Dimensionen/Triadic Dimensions program of poetry films that incorporate dance and music, and it fits nicely into the Dance category here. I didn’t get to meet Seiler in person, but her bio is an interesting one:

Sina Seiler studied Media and Journalism with focus on documentary filmmaking & TV at international University of Tuebingen, Germany with a stipend in Film at DAMS / University of the Arts, Theatre and Film at Bologna, Italy. She graduated with a Diploma/Master and a Oral History Documentary about the Saxons in Romania.

She works as a writer, filmmaker, lecturer and artist.

The dancer is Soraya Schulthess.

Rolling Frames by Ella Jane Chappell

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This well-filmed dance interpretation of a poem by Ella Jane Chappell is one of ten shortlisted films for the Southbank Centre’s inaugural Shot Through the Heart Poetry Film competition. Katie Garrett of Garrett and Garrett Videography directs, with choreography by Anna-Lise Marie Hearn. The dance company, AniCo., has a webpage about the film. The text is worth quoting at length for the insight it gives into dance-focused poetry videos, an important subset of poetry video generally:

Rolling Frames is an intimate and personal look into the scenarios of three very different relationships that are affected and manipulated by dependency.

At the heart of Rolling Frames are a series of shifting voices and characters that inhabit three very different relationships. These relationships are linked by the role that dependency plays in each. To some extent, every relationship involves a yielding of independence. The poem dissects this manner of yielding: the manifestation of greed in desire, the vulnerability in love, the loneliness in lust.

The physicality and inner rhythms of the words are translated once over by the expressive movements of dance, and once again through the gaze of the camera’s eyes.

All American by David Hernandez

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If the films released so far on their website are any indication, Motionpoems‘ 2014 season is their most stylistically diverse collection of poetry films to date. This film, released just before Independence Day in the U.S., builds on the poem’s challenge to any easy assumptions about American identity. (It’s also slightly NSFW, with glimpses of female nudity.) Here’s the description from the website:

Filmed near Lake Geneva Switzerland (and at the Large Hadron Collider at Cern), British filmmaker Richard Johnson and dancer Jasmine Morand present this francoperspective on California poet David Hernandez’s all-inclusive poem, “All American.”

Click through and scroll down for the text.

For more on Richard Johnson, see his pages on Cinely and IMDb. For more on the poet, visit DavidHernandez.com.

امر گيت / A Song Everlasting by Attiya Dawood

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All the flowers in my country have been picked
And gunpowder planted instead.
Fragrance breathes its last
In a torture camp.
The very lane where hand in hand with you
I have danced to the music of peace,
There a death-dealer is spread-eagled.

Ammar Aziz directed this poetry film featuring Pakistani poet, writer, and women’s rights activist Attiya Dawood, accompanied by dancer Suhaee Abro. Be sure to press the icon marked “CC” at the bottom of the video to view subtitles in English, Sindhi or Urdu, or click through to the Umang website to read the text in all three languages.

The Applicant by Sylvia Plath

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This is Confessions of a Lacking Pursuit,

Directed, choreographed & edited by Maggie Bailey. Filmed by Paul Nguyen. Performed by Heather Bybee. Sylvia Plath’s recitation of her poem “The Applicant.” Music by Shane Carruth.

Maggie Bailey is majoring in Theatre/Theatre Arts Management and Dance, concentrating in Performance and Choreography, at College of Charleston, according to LinkedIn. Confessions of a Lacking Pursuit was her senior project.

In my kitchen in New York by Allen Ginsberg

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Last week’s Sunday bonus post went over well, so here’s another, also a bit spiritual, for all you church-of-the-brunch types. In this one, the late Allen Ginsberg does Tai Chi in his kitchen over an audio track of Allen Ginsberg reading a poem about doing Tai Chi in his kitchen. Found via the lyrikline blog, which notes:

This clip is one of the earliest “Poetry Spots” Bob Holman made between 1986 and 1994 for the New York public television station, WYZC. Holman produced around 50 “Poetry Spots” in total.

For more of Holman’s poetry videos, see his YouTube channel.

Iluzjonista / Illusionist by Slawomir Elsner

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A poem by the Polish artist Slawomir Elsner turned into a film by choreographer, dancer and filmmaker Jagoda Bobrowska, who notes that it was a

Film made for a competition “Nakrec wiersz” (shoot a poem)
Idea, directing, montage, music: Jagoda Bobrowska
Dance: Elena Sgarbi and Svelin Velchev