About Me

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Choreopoet, Performer - of song, music,poetry playwright,director,publisher, composer,multi-media artist, journalist, blogger, creative visionary arts, cultural activist, sojourner, urban griot,chamelon dreamer

Friday, 30 December 2011

African Rhythm & English/Patwa (Patois) Langauge & Creating Chimeras & Chiaroscuro

A single pulse of an old african diaspora five beat rhythm in my mind -is the vision for the entire piece. As it underpins the choreopoem of our project , all the text. choreography, movement - the whole dynamic of the piece etc is structured on these five beat cycles . In writing the text this is from within me and moves without . I aim to infuse it into the creative team and for it to be fully internalized by all of them. The same later on by , audiences - but on a more subtle level. For now as we work , we will be further aided by my setting of, the precise bpm (beats per minute) and tempo , recording it and building on it further on it for edits and soundscape etc.. One of my key influences for theatre e.g. Berkof (alongside Peter Brooks ) displays keen attention to language and rhythm e.g.Berkof's work East - this is also the case for Shakespeare's works too. I reflect my identity. african peoples musical legacy , alongside the universality within many popular forms of diverse music , embodying this african rhythm. By my use of it thus, it becomes all the more critical for the actual words/language of this specially created argot . A s it is not iambic pentameter that is usual.

For our next film/digital test session, my preparation all centers around the creation of the character's nemesis who appears as nightmares. She is a chimera , frightening by turns, not quite visible . Our last creative team discussion centered a lot on lighting. I like the chiaroscuro effect and will explore this further for this key part - but also overall in line with the artistic themes and motifs that I have previously set. There is also special costume to finalize and a headdress to make all on deadline. I have enjoyed designing these bespoke costumes both for the effect, period/culture , dance movement, ease of wear, and to work with lighting etc. In costume key influences , range from africa, china and India - places of inspiration for all divas down the ages. I delight to find key design shapes , fabrics and ornamentation ideas, that are shared and span theses great continents and their diverse cultures. Thereby affirming important links and welcoming the world, through our aesthetics for the piece .


Thursday, 15 December 2011

The Caravan Rolls On

Something of a roller coaster, in the last week or so . Branding, logos artwork , media interviews, recruiting new Student Interns, staging deviser, planing the most technically challenging film live action and digital interactivity - Whoah !!! All rounded off marvellously with costume consultations, a project management task list, with loads of tasks completed, plus an injection of further funding, for the music (acoustic and electronic) component of the project CHAMPION ! as they say in the North East of England.

Whatever gremlins, obstacles, challenges, problems that pop up like , on a target range- are swept up and batted around, until a suitable solution is found. A good working relationship with partners is paramount, to help with any number of hurdles. As the momentum continues to build and the caravan rolls on... I cannot help but really enjoy the creative journey we are all on, in particular , myself as a black woman artist. I feel am continuing the legacy, of those that came before me , I 'am thinking now of the heady days of the Harlem Renaissance, the 30's very tough economic times (like now) but some of greatest pioneers of music ,dance theatre in NYC got their mojos going- I take inspiration from them . Clearly my visit to the Schomburg Centre has a deep and lasting effect, that has got me to where I am now.



Sunday, 11 December 2011

Coming In To Light - Making It All Real

What I write below, makes me happy, very proud and relieved - to actually be making good progress,s its all becoming very real the vision - despite a lot tense moments ... (no time for blogging just go go go !) over the last number of weeks . The whole 2012 branding logo matter is finally resolved, with a partner coming to our aid and our creative design branding person saving the day ! But it highlighted a number of key issues around legal status, for a solo entrepreneurial artist like my self . I cannot emphasize enough the importance of professional bodies e.g. Equity the Society of Authors etc to support artists in this project work . Providing umbrellas and good advice etc for a small fee in consideration of the actual benefits. Professionalism and membership is critical to ones standing in the field also.

We remain in a fundraising mode - for finance for the musical components of the project and in time for touring !! However we begin the planning and preparation for some big moments - the specialist equipment , purchasing. building the prop, lighting design, and then testing, further script development staging and devising and creative design images etc. leading up to a brief sharing work/ in progress early in the new year. I am working with a new staging/ deviser with a truly impressive track record and similar tastes and interest in theatre. GREAT I am very excited about all that. so we move closer to standing everything up on its feet, to see and learn what works and what may not ...2012 the new year is filled with anticipation, excitement and a feeing of getting to our destination !!

So I say to the world shine a light , Dare to Diva are in residence at Phoenix Arts Digital Media Centre Leicester, busy , developing their new innovative multi- disciplinary arts project 'The Loneliness of the Long Distance Diva - A Choreopoem' written and performed by Carol Leeming. The production is set to debut at Curve Theare June 2012 as part of the Cultural Olympiad.

This highly talented collaborative creative team includes , choreographer Louise Katerega filmaker Sally Hossack , digital Designer, Sean Clark staging/deviser Kim Jackson, lighitng designer Andy Elston, and Mina Gadhia Costume Maker. Earlier in the project Sarah Dickenson was Dramaturg as part of the Apples & Snakes Evolve program. Project partners include Apples & Snakes, Phoenix Digital Media Centre, Curve Theatre, Peepul Centre. With support from Igniting Ambition and Arts Council Engand.