TUNDRA at The Invisible Dog
June 6-8th, 7:30pm
Christiana Axelsen presents
Tundra is an evening-length performance piece developed by choreographer Christiana Axelsen, dramaturg Megan Smith and playwright Chana Porter. Tundra features performers Andrew Champlin, Quinlan Corbett, Kevin Ho, Maya Lawson, Anna Schon, and Randall Anthony Smith.
Inspired by mountaineering, early aviation, arctic exploration and Gaston Bachelard, Tundra uses the simultaneous presentation of dance and theater as a method to investigate the human fascination with conquering unknown space. By featuring multiple, decentralized islands of action within the stage space, the work aims is to capture the intimacy of human interactions within a vast landscape and to give the viewer the experience of a poetic, adventurous spectatorship.
Pico Iyer once said that the greatest travel writer who ever lived was Emily Dickinson. This poet who rarely, if ever, left her house was able to capture the very heart of why we adventure, why we seek out challenging, dangerous endeavors – to better understand the essence of the human experience. I think this connects to something that Gaston Bachelard talks about in the Poetics of Space “that it is always more enriching to imagine than to experience.” Personally, I am torn by this thought. I live in New York City and I dream about climbing mountains. I read about extreme landscapes that I wish to explore. Is this imagining really better than experience? Maybe I make art because choreographing and performing serve as a poetic imagining of unrealized experience. Tundra is an investigation of this pull between unknown space and our homes, the safe places where we indulge in dreaming and the act of creation, where like Emily Dickenson, the thought of unknown space perhaps helps us better mine the depths of our own selves.
Tundra is sponsored, in part, by the Greater New York Arts Development Fund of the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, administered by the Brooklyn Arts Council, Inc. (BAC).