Woodhorn Museum in Ashington to host contemporary dance performance about changes to the Northumberland landscape
and live on Freeview channel 276
Woodhorn Museum will host the first performance of Coalfield to Landscape, born from a partnership project between Eliot Smith Dance in Gateshead and Denmark-based artist Liv Vester Larsen.
Their project, MERGE, was one of three nationwide to be supported by the International Touring and Environmental Responsibility Fund, helping artists and companies develop more sustainable approaches to international touring and collaboration.
During the development of the work people from Woodhorn’s local community attended creative movement and writing workshops that informed the final piece, which will be performed by dancers Yamit Salazar and Rowan Parker in both indoor and outdoor settings.
Liv, a violinist and vocalist who has composed the music and soundscape for the work, said: “During our planning of MERGE and this collaboration I realised that Eliot and I have similar values when it comes to artistic approach, local engagement, and how to include nature, diversity, and sustainability in all aspects as a frame for creative works.
“The music for Coalfield to Landscape includes elements from bass drums, swords from Rapper sword dance, sound of hooves from pit ponies, and collected natural materials from the area around Ashington and Woodhorn, as well as materials from the industrial past.
“Sound recordings of coal, steel, factories, and wind vibrations interaction with trees amplify the natural experience of this piece.”
Eliot Smith, whose company has had a base at Woodhorn since 2016, said: “It has been a real pleasure to work with members of the local community on this piece and we are excited for people to see the performance.
“The work focuses on coalfield communities in Northumberland that share the benefits of a renewed landscape, welcoming visitors from afar to celebrate their unique heritage and promote stewardship of the land, shaped by understanding of the past and needs of the future.
“As the company grows, we are committed to being accountable in all aspects of our work in relation to the environment.”
ESD has committed to submitting its carbon entry for all future projects to a carbon calculator devised by non-profit Julie’s Bicycle.
Tickets are available at eliotsmithdance.com/events. Sam Wonfor is the editor of Cultured. North East.