Hackney Council: Choreography Directorate (Queenbridge office)

The Department for Choreography is a proposal for a one (or more) month residency at Legion TV in which choreographic interventions are made in the local political and civic life.  A team of dance artists will work under the supervision of Hamish MacPherson to deliver workshops, classes and events for local residents and civic workers. Hamish will use the residency to develop a practice of political choreography. 

The department will be a self-appointed function serving the local council (Queenbridge Ward) and constituency and although covering E83 & E84 postcodes in Queensbridge not necessarily constrained by either’s boundaries.

Choreography Directorate, c/o Legion TV, 4-17 Frederick Terrace, London E8 4EW

Aims:

  • How can choreography be an official function of the local authority
  • Finding the choreography of the area. Sharing the choreography. Serving the state and its citizens.

Indicative activities

Activities can be grouped into three areas. Political spaces will look at creating or infecting spaces to enable them to take on new political forms. Political bodies will look at the body as a site of political change. Political choreographies will involve social choreographies, ways to re-imagine

Political space

Consultation: People draw or build (e.g. with building blocks) a political space (where does political activity take place)

Workshop: Working with set designer and others to create the gallery space to be one of political potentiality over one weekend

 bFloor_plan_Legion

Consultation: People draw a political map of the area (ongoing) or annotate an existing map

Event: Dancing in political spaces (various types from tea dance to contact jam) to infuse those spaces with the energy and potentiality of the dancing body. To disrupt indirectly the function and content of these spaces (one-offs)

Event: Walking tours by public servants (traffic wardens, road sweepers, policemen) or alternative walking tours of the area (one day)

Political body

Classes: Free movement classes will be provided for civil servants (Martine, Marina)

Workshop: Stop and search with local police and stop and search activists (one day)

Classes: Political yoga (for citizens) ??

Classes: English language and dance classes ??

Workshop: Creating a protest dance (one day)

Political/ civic choreography

Workshop: Dancing politics with Gillie Kleiman (one day)

Workshop: Manifesto (Siriol)

Event: Citizen surgeries (human library-esque find interesting local residents that are demographically representative – look for wise and interesting people in the area) (once a week)

Event: Democratic Dance Team (one day)

Practice: A daily political choreography (alone and with others including work with speeches)

Consultation: Public consultation – people send a video of them moving in the area (make a film of it) (ongoing)

Partners

Arts Council: Funding

Hackney Council: Access to staff and facilities including dance spaces

Hackney Police Station: For stop and search workshop

Cicil Society body; For stop and search workshop

Local MP: Access, support, ask them to hold a surgery in a dance studio.

The area

Methodology:

  • Brain storm
  • Find other dance artists to collaborate- deliver functions
  • Do some research to find the area
  • Find people I know that live there
  • Make contact with Hackney arts officer
  • Write to other departments announcing that we have been set up and inviting them to meet or look for cross-departmental ways of working (act as if official)
  • Find other potential partners

Maybe keep it simple and then scale it up in other places

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Asian/Asian British; Other Asian 3
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Black/African/Caribbean/Black British; Caribbean 9
Black/African/Caribbean/Black British; Other Black 4
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Other Ethnic Group; Any Other Ethnic Group 4
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30-39yr 21
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50-59yr 9
60-69yr 6
70-79yr 4
80-89yr 2
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