Multi-layered meditation on memory and identity

ONE of Ireland’s leading contemporary dance companies is bringing a new full-length dance production – Body and Forgetting – to The Watergate on February 20 as part of a national tour.

ONE of Ireland’s leading contemporary dance companies is bringing a new full-length dance production – Body and Forgetting – to The Watergate on February 20 as part of a national tour.

This follows the original work’s two sell-out performances at Dublin Dance Festival last May.

Emotionally powerful and haunting, Liz Roche’s choreography interacts with a film piece by Alan Gilsenan and with Denis Roche’s live score.

Inspired by Milan Kundera’s The Book of Laughter and Forgetting, the company of remarkable dancers find their way through delicately woven circumstances of disappearance, loss, relationship and hope in this atmospheric work.

Liz Roche says of the genesis of Body and Forgetting:“I began looking at the writings of Milan Kundera and was particularly interested in his stories of disappearance and memory, and how he portrays the complexities of loss and betrayal.

“I was clear that I wanted the live dancing to be in response to a fixed film, so I could then play with the past, present and future possibilities. I was aware of the nature in which Alan Gilsenan makes his work and the emphasis he places on time. For me, he brought new perspectives to my lines of questioning and reinforced the humanity within the movement and the dancers.

“I worked with the dancers finding ways to make movement based on texts they wrote themselves about what they ‘regretted not saying to someone at a pivotal time in their lives.

“In a way through the dance they could rewrite and therefore reclaim their past. I knew that I wanted the music to be performed live, so I asked Denis Roche if he would play. As he is my brother, I know his affinity with the guitar and remember the almost constant sound of an electric guitar in our house growing up! I wanted to have that sound as the backdrop to this piece. Somehow it was important, in this instance to bring my own memories into the piece.”

Following its premiere at The Abbey Theatre at the end of January, the full-length Body and Forgetting will then be performed at DanceXchange Birmingham Hippodrome, UK prior to the Irish tour, which willl take in Longford, Sligo, Cork, Kilkenny and Limerick.

Liz Roche Company www.lizrochecompany.com produces an exciting programme of unique dance productions, and has performed throughout Ireland and in the UK, France, Germany, Cyprus, USA and China.

Artistic Director of the Dublin-based dance company, Liz Roche is also choreographer-in-residence at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at the University of Limerick, former recipient of Peter Darrell Choreographic Award, Bonnie Bird U.K. New Choreography Award and the Jane Snow Award 2002. She has also choreographed for opera and theatre, with recent work including Alice in Funderland at The Abbey Theatre.

Body and Forgetting was developed with the support of Modul-dance, a pan-European dance mobility project and Dance Ireland.

The show takes place on February 20 at 8pm. Tickets are priced at €12 and €10. For more information, contact 056 7761674 or see www.watergatetheatre.com