Erin Drummond

This will be Erin Drummond’s second time at the Cabaret, having performed in “Love Songs” by David DeBlieck earlier this fall as part of our recurring Kinetic Kitchen series. But her dance career stretches back much further, having begun at the tender age of eight when she took a ballet class because her best friend Laura wanted to take it. (Hey, that sounds like how I got into Doctor Who…) Her work is constantly evolving; one interest that currently drives her work is the body’s sensorial relationship to place: “there is a split second lag between the energy field around your body and the electrical activity in your brain.  We sense the world before we process it on a cerebral level, and this fascinates me.  I am interested in the forms, movements, energies, and qualities that can emerge from a sensorial exploration- even with the very air, movement of our blood, and resonance of our bones- before the thinking mind gets involved.  I nurture this connection by using an intuitive form of directing in the rehearsal process, and then refining the work from there.” Erin is also interested in how a dance formed in interaction with one place is changed when transplanted into another, as it will be this weekend when “Laoi na Mn Mora” (which grew out of reciprocity with the sea) comes to the indoor performance space of Patrick’s Cabaret. 

Erin has had the opportunity to investigate these interests in many different locations. In 2004 she was study abroad in Samoa and interviewing local Samoans about their experiences with aitu (spirits) and as the culmination of the project, she put together a performance piece integrating local legends and dance with her own performative voice, entitled “My Ancestor is a Cloud.”    In 2007, a composer friend of hers who was working for a dance/theater company in Bangkok invited her to come work on a project commissioned by the UN.  She remembers many of the UN delegates insisting that the dance performance should not be included in their ceremony, because the issues were “too important for art,” whereupon Angh, the woman largely responsible for starting  the commission, replied, “these issues are so important, we need every avenue possible to explore them!”  This was a moment that greatly inspired Erin, and after seeing the devastation of the recent tsunamis in Southeast Asia and Samoa, she says she is further impassioned in the exploration of artistic forms- esp. through relationship with place- as an invaluable way to tune into otherwise unseen possibilities for the climate, earth, and ourselves.

I think I’ll let her close this out: “As much as I may try to describe my work in words, the life of it is in the thing itself.” To see the life of the thing, head down to Patrick’s Cabaret Friday or Saturday. Have fun!

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