In [Brackets] with Anna Pehrsson

Former Cullbergballet dancer Anna Pehrsson is currently inhabiting the studio with her upcoming work In [Brackets]. The project is set out to rethink the genre ”solodance” via intimacy, intensity and exposure as it hosts practices of tying, twining, weaving and looping.


– Basically I work with threads and the body as a circuit of nets and knots in order to sketch out a compost of relations, Anna says.

In [Brackets] is also part of a trilogy in which the work Cut in/ Fold out from last year was the first. We asked her to elaborate on the project’s starting points.

– The emergence of the Antroposcene and an approaching ecological catastrophe, urges for a radical renegotiation of the human, both as an autonomous subject and as the center of the ecological system. These ideas have consequences not only for the “I” but also for methods, strategies and operations that support dance and choreography.

I decided to go straight to the expression of that I in western dance tradition, the solo genre, and to rethink it through the symbiotic prerequisites the body may allow for, beyond the subject and the idea of the human as superior to its context. The project deals with processes where the “I” is relinquished to its suspension and where submission is explored in collision with intimacy, intensity and exposure. Can an I imploding as an object for its own sensation serve as a catalyst for a common exposure (of soloist, solo, room and audience) on a kinaesthetic level? Can intensity and intimacy, transformed into vibration, reach beyond the visual and have us leave what we know as the body altogether?

The starting point of Annas methods is something she calls “Nego-sensation”.

– “N-S” is a collision between negotiation and sensation, a speculative approach to somatic practices like BMC in combination with for example a continuous movement forward. The injection of friction in the method allows for the somatic to be treated as a technicality without pretention to be “neutral/natural/authentic”. “Nego-sensation” disrupts the sequencing logic, “if… then”, i.e recognition, to instead propose “what if”. The method permits the dancer to dress up in a body that plays with structure, distinguishing between being a body, working as a body, and observing what a body does, Anna says.

Anna Pehrsson will be a resident in studio throughout the month of July. The work In [Brackets] will then, in collaboration with light designer Thomas Zamolo and artistic advisor, dramaturge Siegmar Zacharias, premiere at Weld on September 1-2 at 7pm, and September 3rd at 6pm.

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