As we head into the final weeks of accepting submissions for Dare to Dance in Public Film Festival, I find myself frequently searching for more, new dance films to share that are done in the public sphere, completely outside of studios, sound stages, and theaters. Luckily, there are plenty of these of late, although not all of them are as striking as this.
In one of my recent visits trolling NOWNESS to see what they are up to, I found the spare and singular film Fragments by Swedish Director Bertil Nilsson. The film is completely scoreless and I found it utterly transfixing. Featuring model and dancer Jordan Robson, Fragments is a perfectly designed exploration of how movement can enlighten and enliven site and scale in architecture, especially when captured by the discerning eye of the camera.
Filmed almost entirely on the streets of East London, Fragments has a kind of beautiful languor. With sparse and relatively simple choreography, the movement executed in each scene seems to be selected in direct response to the site and camera framing, and completely on point. Nilsson works frequently with circus artists and dancers, of which Robson is a beautiful example, and from what I can see he has a unique search at play in all of his work. The hard and unforgiving nature of the city streets are simultaneously explored and softened by the movement.
So for all of you thinking of submitting to Dare to Dance in Public Film Festival, I hope this will be an inspiration to finally DO IT here: https://culturalweekly.submittable.com/submit/89691/dare-to-dance-in-public-film-festival-round-two-2017
At just under three minutes, Fragments is eminently watchable. Again and again.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Founder/Director of Dare to Dance in Public Film Festival, Sarah Elgart is a Los Angeles based choreographer and director working under the auspice of Sarah Elgart | Arrogant Elbow. Sarah creates original content for stage, screen, and site-specific venues. Her stage and site-works have been performed at alternative spaces including LAX Airport, The Skirball Center, Mark Taper Forum, Van Nuys Flyaway, The Bradbury Building, Jacob’s Pillow, INSITU Site-Specific Festival NY, and Loft Seven, where she created a rooftop work lit entirely by a hovering helicopter accompanied by Nels Cline (Wilco). Her work has been produced by venues including The Music Center, MASS MoCA, Dance Place, Los Angeles Theater Center, Mark Taper Forum and The International Women’s Theater Festival. In film Sarah has worked with noted directors including JJ Abrams, David Lynch, Catherine Hardwicke, and Anton Corbijn. Her own films include award-winning music videos, dance shorts, and an Emmy nominated PSA, and continue to be accepted into festivals internationally. In addition to teaching dance and film, Sarah writes a regular column, ScreenDance Diaries that focuses on the intersections of both genres internationally for online magazine Cultural Weekly. Sarah’s work has received support from organizations that include the Rockefeller Foundation, the NEA, City of Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department, California Arts Council and more. She is an alumna of the Sundance Institute’s Dance Film Lab, a Fellow of AFI’s Directing Women’s Workshop, and a director member of the DGA.
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