Monodrama in three parts
with Nikolina Komljenovic
The scenes take place in a black box room with a lighting set up.
This script is written for one dancer and two voices.
ONE (the evil eye)
0’00 - 3’33
The act opens on a close-up of black (wall, floor or other).
The soundtrack opens on a drums solo, post-produced but recorded live in a single-shot.
Camera shoots in close-ups. Little by little the whole space is revealed. On the floor she convulses. Her dress is glowing under the spotlight. She spreads her arms on the floor. Her eyes are peering into the darkness. She resists as the drive settles In herself. It lies at the very top of her head and moves through her whole body face chest arms legs. She lies in the dark. The very movement of her urgent fingers alters and reveals the space around her. Her arms cover her chest and she keeps in an irrepressible impulse. Light is on her. She is at view in the centre of the frame. She’s an indestructible body loaded with craving. Her dress shows more and more flesh as she revolves in the space.
The European witchcraft tradition clearly included the possibility that witches might not only leave their human bodies but also either change them or enter alternative bodies such as those of animals. Shape-shifters are usually very dangerous. They are not what they look like and always appear in disguise. Her manifestation is shaped with the tales of others. She is one abstraction one fear. The viewer might find pleasure in watching her body moving. There is seduction in watching what is not there. The possibility for it to appear at anytime. She acts in a delimited area of the room but will soon fill each part of the frame with her spell. The feeling of empowerment still does not get her satisfied.
At this moment, we don’t know what the performer is the embodiment of.
TWO (the ethnologist)
3’34 - 8’46
The performer produces isolated repeated movements relating to the performative enactments of Act One. She is a wandering archetype in search of her own identity and repetition is one way of getting it. They are isolated movements re-enacted one by one in several parts of the space. They consist in understanding the mechanisms at stake. What triggers the movement and what the movement is a manifestation of. What is going on and what is happening has to be reproduced and repeats itself. The bottom of her feet is covered with dirt. She’ll eventually try and get rid of it. At this point she passes her hand in her hair sitting on a piece of red velvet fabric.
VOICE 1 :
Everything that has a name should exist. That being not real might not be worth a conversation. What is at stake here is constructed just out of what is socially conventional. It questions the norms, the reason of its own existence. It is the monstrous feminine, the endangered patriarchy, the embodiment of human beings most prominent fears and desires. It is ambiguous and ambivalent. It is dangerously repulsive and attractive. It is in movement and still. It reacts to sound and silence.
THREE (the artist)
8’47 - 16’05
The camera is placed outside of the room and the scene is filmed through an opening in the wall.
VOICE 2 :
The performer’s golden dress is supposed to be a seductive outfit relating to a cliché about the feminine. Her hair had once been tied up in a bun but is now all down. It is an extension of her body. This is when it gets completely free. It is where supposedly lies her wilderness. This is the exhibition moment. The ritualistic act of monstration of the guilty body during which a moral frame is being settled.
It’s not clear if she is the subject of examination. No one is present in the space to witness her action. She is alone in the black room. As she closes the windows it gets darker and she sets up what is to become the stage of a latent drama, a non-space where catharsis can now take place. The apparatus is revealed on Act Three but finally disappears in darkness. The performer’s body remains isolated and decontextualized. However she is facing the camera while it moves around her. She’s conscious of its movement and the heat of the spotlights on her face. She can feel the eyes scrutinizing. Her position is a re-enactment of a previous pose documented on Act One. It seems like her body is simultaneously processing and repressing the movement. The performer’s body is the embodiment of an object of study and simultaneously a feminine body with its own qualities. This sequence is filmed as a single shot during which the physical endurance of the performer is being harnessed. This act is completely choreographed but remains unresolved. There is no end to the enactment but that of the end of the filming.