Moving Parts – Bodies, Puppets, Dance

Research and Creation Support Material

Paul Chambers and Rosie Contant at Café Concret #22, presented with Festival Phénoména 2015. Photo by JF Leblanc.
Paul Chambers and Rosie Contant at Café Concret #22, presented with Festival Phénoména 2015. Photo by JF Leblanc.

For over a decade, Café Concret, the curatorial collective behind Moving Parts, has carved out an important niche within Montreal’s vibrant puppetry community by creating informal variety evenings that bring artists together in juxtaposition and dialogue from a broad variety of artistic practices, including tabletop and object theatre, live cinema and animation, shadow theatre, spoken word, music, and dance. 

Twigs for Bones (Heather Caplap, Erin Hill, Joy Ross-Jones) at Café Concret #19, 2014. Photo by Caroline Hayeur.
Twigs for Bones (Heather Caplap, Erin Hill, Joy Ross-Jones) at Café Concret #19, 2014. Photo by Caroline Hayeur.

To discover excerpts from the early (2006-’09) Café Concret cabarets, watch the following video:

In 2018 Café Concret will host Moving Parts: Bodies, Puppets, Dance, a research workshop where academics and artists are invited to exchange knowledge concerning the conceptual relations and embodied knowledge shared across the arts of puppetry, object performance, dance, and physical theatre.  

Below are a few examples of the past work of participating artists which demonstrates their research into objects and bodies in performance.

Julika Mayer, a puppeteer whose piece Heimat / Où habitons nous / habitable (2003) balances on the line between puppetry and dance (@0:55):

 

Ange Loft’s Juno and Polaris nominated band YAMANTAKA//SONIC TITAN employs puppetry and choreography in one cohesive (and uncategorizable) stage show (@3:35):

 

Paul Chambers’ work with fellow lighting designer David-Alexandre and dancer Annie Gagnon is part of an ongoing creation process of a dance with wearable lights.  In Chambers’ work the lighting becomes a performer, a “ghost dancer” on stage. This workshop showing was filmed January 2017 (@2:16):

 

 

In Clea Minaker’s Book of Thel (2012 – 2014), the body of the puppeteer is a central landmark while the scenography is alive and animated around her:

Clea Minaker - Book of Thel 2012Clea Minaker - Book of Thel 2012

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