The company’s planned 2020 Shapeshifters project, that came out of a commission from the Stapleford Arts Centre in collaboration with artist in resident Kevin Flanagan, evolved into new form with the covid lockdown. In lockdown, we, like many, have fought the confinement and isolation by exploring natural environments for new sustenance and with Stapleford arts centre’s proximity to the Gog Magog downs in Cambridgeshire the location, geology, mythologies and skylarks of the downs provided a way forward out of a cancelled tour. Tales of Gog Magogs hail from Asia, Wales and SW england, providing connection for different peoples and cultures with Gog as giant in partnership with Magog the land. The Gog Magogs were also called the “Telegraph clump” functioning as one of the semaphore line locations, an optical telegraph system between London and Great Yarmouth in the 19th century.
Involving the company and past collaborators, the project sought to connect across long distances through symbolic gestures recorded on film, resulting in a new dancefilm, documenting a moment in the pandemic of 2020.
Choreographer/Director: Jane Turner
Film (Gog Magog Hills): Chris Frazer Smith
Editing: Chris Frazer Smith
Music: Kevin Flanagan
Dancers: Natacha Bisarre, Gwen Jones, Grégoire A. Meyer, David Ogle, Ann Pidcock
Costume consultant: Sam Dightam
Guest DanceFilms by:
Deborah Baddoo MBE, Lexi Bradburn, Victoria Chiu, Kema T. Ekpei, Anna Golding, Josh Alan Michaux-Trask, Joan Mills, Caroline Schanche, Karen da Silva, Tim Taylor, Trevor Waldron
With thanks to Trevor Barlow, Claire Beale and the Magog Trust
Supported by Arts Council England