THROUGH THE CRACKS: Viviane Frehner

See 1/15 ROSS STREET by Viviane Frehner, Kimberly McIntyre, and Barry Hill at #CTF2017!

CTF: Why do you make experimental performance?

In my career as a dance company member for many years in Europe, I often suffered under the constant stress of deadline. Most of the time, a work needed to be done in a very short amount of time and there was never enough time for research and experimenting. I always found this a real pity, I felt we were scratching on the surface a lot and the works that were produced in the machinery of the dance companies (that were part of a state funded theatre) were OK but I had this nagging feeling that we didn’t exploit the maximum potential. Now, as a freelancing dancer and choreographer, I finally (can) take my time to dig deep. I love working with improvisation and exploring and playing, that’s where the magic of brilliant moments lies. I find it exciting not to know what the end product will look like exactly, the choreography and the story line of my work shall find me instead of me looking for them. Kimberly McIntyre, my brilliant dance partner, has been working with emergent choreography for many years and it is a pleasure to have someone so experienced in this field working and exploring with me where 1/15 Ross Street will go.

CTF: Tell us about the poetry of the iconic Australian backyard? How did yours inspire you?

I have a weakness for “photogenic” suburbia. It triggers my film brain, I straight away see a film setting and visualize scenes. Photogenic mundane suburbia evokes a big curiosity in me of wanting to look behind closed doors of people living in these settings and observe their rituals, their mundane activities and see if I can read some deeper stories from those. Like taking out the rubbish. It seems like the same action every week, but if you observed someone for a long time, you would start to get more hints of what is going on in this person’s psyche or emotional life. This aspect excites me and inspired the idea of my new piece. Not to mention that I live in a very iconic apartment block which is screaming for setting a piece. I am particularly fascinated by the hills hoist clothing lines. (I got 3 in my backyard). They are such a symbol of “the housewife”. But what is a housewife? What is going on in housewive’s intimate realm? Hanging the washing is not just hanging the washing, it is very symbolic and can tell many stories. That´s what we will work with in 1/15 Ross Street.

CTF: A highlight of developing and/or performing this work so far?

A highlight so far in developing this piece have been a few rehearsals in my private backyard in Lennox Head where magical moments in improvisation happened. It is mind blowing to see what comes through an artist if he/she is in the moment without expectation, just ready to play, react and be. Especially fascinating was, how Kimberly, my dance partner, found the character of her housewife. We had no plan of how this persona was going to be, but one day “she” just was here.

Another highlight for me is the people´s interest and hunger for art which I am experiencing with this piece. Because we work outdoors in a backyard and not in a theatre, more people see what we do and are curious and ask. We’ve had very positive feedback and support so far.

CTF: Three words/phrases that describe your body of work?

fresh, quirky, poetic

CTF: What can audiences expect?

Audiences can expect an unconventional, creative and fun site specific dance theatre performance which plays with emerging choreography , improvisation and a narrative thread. Audience will feel a bit like peeping toms, glancing over the hedge into the neighbours garden and observing some obscure, funny and intriguing scenes.

CTF: Have you been to CTF before?

It’s mine and Kimberly’s first time at Crack Theatre Festival and we are very excited.

Join Kimberly’s Contact Improvisation workshop here: https://www.trybooking.com/book/event?eid=310585

Plus get a sneak peak of 1/15 Ross Street at their open improvisation!