1951 original recording of John Cage's composition

Saturday, 5th October 2013, 9:30 pm
at The Shoe Factory
304 Ermou str., 1017 Nicosia
further information t. 22 663 871
5th International Contemporary Music Festival
Pharos Arts Foundation
Free Admission

Arianna Economou has performed ‘ SIXTEEN DANCES’ to the 1951 original recording of John Cage’s composition, written specifically for four dancers led by Merce Cunningham.

Her solo treatment of the composition drew on the many years of her training and experience with a wide range of dance vocabulary – Ballet [ Rambert] ; Contact Improvisation [Steve Paxton, himself a one - time student of Merce Cunningham, Ideokinesis- authentic release work ] (Mary Fulkerson) Body Mind Centering [Vera Orlock] as well as her work as dancer/ choreographer in Ancient Greek Theatre productions.

SIXTEEN DANCES explores the 9 RASA-S/sentiments, that remain the core of Indian/Asian Arts and Aesthetics.
Anger, Humour, Sorrow, the Heroic, The Odious, The Wondrous, Fear, the Erotic and Tranquility.
These sentiments are defined and discussed at great length, in the ancient Sanskrit Manual NATYASHASTRA 200 B.C – 200 A.D, still in use as a reference point, throughout Indian.

Each Sentiment is followed by an Interlude, save the last- Erotic - which is followed immediately with the 9th RASA/ Tranquility thus making up the SIXTEEN DANCES.

The instruments used in the ensemble work are flute, trumpet, percussion, piano, violin and cello. We hear John Cage breaking away from tonal music and exploring a wide range of percussive sounds. We also see the start of a new method of composition based on ‘chance’ inspired by his readings and use of the Chinese manual I CHING. This method of throwing dice was also used by Merce Cunningham in shaping his choreography.

The colour coding of the Fabrics, are those used in the Natyashastra Manual, as is the choice of the rectangular space used in Ancient Sanskirt Theatre conventions.

The performance took 53 minutes and was created in dialogue with Ruth Keshishian.