Soooo, a long time since this happened, but my first solo project "Kapittel X" premiered at the Passion for Ocean festival in Oslo the 26th of August, and it went very well! I can almost not explain the extremely overwhelming feeling I got just as a result of actually putting something out into life that I have been working on for so long. I am so proud of myself for accomplishing this.. and it has been a long prosess, from this being an idea in my head, to finding music material and mix that, to finding someone who wanted to show it, to film the background video and editing it, to creating choreography and structure and to finally put it all together and perform it. Wow, I have learned so much!
First of all, the realization that if I want to create something, it's all in my hands, I can do it my self, was an epiphany as well as a deliverance. You have always heard that with hard work and a strong belief, you can accomplish most things, and now I know that´s true. In the beginning I thought that I had to get funding from somewhere, I had to get someone professional to film and edit and I had to perform on a stage where the audience was used to see contemporary dance. When I realized that all of this was almost impossible to achieve without any money, prior professional experience or contacts, I chose to find another way, in stead of giving up.
I contacted untraditional arenas and platforms who was in to creating attention around the environmental challenges from different angles. I also thought to my self that -Hey, it can't be that difficult to create a cool video my self? My boyfriend is a very creative, art interested graphic designer and art director who is all in to developing him self in different new areas, and he was eager to help me make a movie, although he'd never done it before, and also pushed me to just go for it. So, we borrowed a SLR camera from my dad, and we went for it.
With my man as my personal camera man and me as our own director we spent at least eight hours over two days, filming outside. And I´ll tell ya that water was cold. And not especially welcoming either.. I think some people don´t even let their dogs swim in that pool. But I did. All for the art is all I can say! Well, it all payed off because the result was great, and it turned out even better than what had in mind. With that said, three full days with editing from sun rise to sun set is much of the reason behind. I got to use my boyfriends professional editing program, which he had not used before, and started by learning some basic stuff. I had to choose a few effects and tools that I could manage and understand, and stick to those. From there I worked my way through eight hours of material, and carefully selected clips that would fit the background concept and the story. This prosess was really like navigating through a jungle, killing darlings and keeping my head over water at the same time, and it ended with a result that I'm very proud of, as well as a gain of a lot of new experience and useful knowledge. When the video was a reality it felt like I had taken a big step in this creative prosess, and the rest just fell in to place.
I had choreography that inspired my work, thoughts and movement during the filming, and the result of the film prosess inspired me even further when finishing the choreography and composition of the piece.
Suddenly all of my assumptions about this being impossible was blown away, and I had actually realized my own thoughts with very few means!
Then it was time to perform. I did not get to have any rehearsals at the location I was gonna perform, and all the prior training and rehearsals had been in my own living room. Thankfully I got to at least see the location, and plan where to dance and make sure the sound and video was good to go in advance. In addition to that the sight was outside on solid asphalt ground, and the performance area had a bit difficult layout with one area in front of the small scene platform in the middle, and one area in front of the big screen where the video played, WHICH was too fare away from the audience to dance in front of. So you can safely say that I was a tiny bit nervous before I went on, but despite these small location challenges it actually went very well, and I felt so good after I had delivered.
I was moved by how many of my family and friends that came to see the performance, that means more to me than they maybe understand. I was also moved by all the positive reactions and feedback the background video (find it on the video page) got when I put it online. It means a lot to me to be able to create something that touches people and makes them react and think about an important subject.
I want to send a big thank you to the people behind the Passion for Ocean festival for letting me show my work, creating awareness and for creating such an important happening for the precious ocean life. A big thank you also to Karoline Hestnes who was in charge of the Passion for Fashion section of the festival, and who in the end were the one who made sure my project got the best possible performance location at the festival. I hope our paths meet again, maybe at next years festival.
// Ingrid S. Nyhus