On LP records, the A-side contained the songs that the artist, producer or record company expected to be the main hits. The B-side was often used as a space for experimentation. The featured songs could be remixes, live or peculiar versions of A-side songs, or material that conceptually just did not fit in with the material on the A-side. The B-side became a space where different logics could be tried and quirky materials had a place to hang out together to see what might happen.
A b-side investigates how the audiences attention can be guided musically through a space of unfamiliar grooves. Musicality is explored as something embodied in the dancers through their relations to each other, light, sound and space.
Through improvisation to music we love - solo and together - we have been on the lookout for spontaneous dances. The dances, qualities, scenes or references that appear, we invite for a cup of tea to get to know a bit better.
This growing collective of friends usually refuse to collaborate when we ask them to join our performance. Even if we ask very politely. They tell us that there would be no point, because they would stop being what they were, and would start being about things that they, and we, appeared to be on stage. During the early phases of the project, it was painfully clear that any attempt of structuring or assembly resulted in something that, one way or another, looked like:
A bad copy of the ”Step Up” movie, where one style meets the other in a magnificently cliché fusion. A younger woman trying to dance an older man's dancing. An older man trying to dance a younger woman's dancing. An older and a younger dancer trying to do something they both suck at to avoid unequal skill distribution. Two different people doing their own thing next to each other as if the other, or the audience, was not there. One choreographer and two dancers exploiting music or movements that in one way or another does not originate from their respective ancestral geographic region. A story about gender identity or power relationships. A completely flat and watered down compromise to avoid the above-listed interpretations.
We consequently dropped the concern and went on with our lives. Eventually, the order in which our friends liked to show up when invited started to show some regularities. They seem to like certain parts of the studio and some music more than other. Sometimes, they request lighting for appropriate visibility - clear but not overly exposing. Their motivations are always obscure. They mumble something about that it ”looks neat” or that if there was a flip-side to everything, then why not just roll with it? Many old friends strongly dislike the new ambience, left, and has not returned since.
We started this project by exploring our dancing, together, and now find ourselves as DJs and set designers to a bunch of b-side singles that seem to enjoy a similar kind of house party.
Project initiator: Erik Eriksson Co-production:Dalateatern Abstractography and dance: Wilma Eriksson & Erik Eriksson Scenography / light: Erik Eriksson