Sarah Gallos, Dave Biddle and Ashleigh Ball cooked up the idea for a collaborative piece while chatting outside the Dusty Flowershop immediately following our November show. Their new work is one of two commissioned pieces for the upcoming Shooting Gallery Performances.
With very different artistic practices, these friends seem to share something in the way of free flowing imagination. Chatting with them over pizza and beer their energy is contagious and I can see how they work so easily as a group, finishing each other’s sentences and tagging serious answers with absurd asides.
Sarah Gallos, Shooting Gallery co-producer, has a background in musical theatre and contemporary dance. She describes her current practice as “contemporary movement, improvisation, choreography, and visualizations… and I’m a dancer too” she adds. She works collaboratively in her own practice and as an interpreter working with other choreographers. In both instances, imagery is an important part of her process as a means of generating movement and communicating with her collaborators.
Dave Biddle, an MFA student at SFU, describes his current focus as ‘Seminart’, a term coined by himself and frequent collaborator Andrew Woods. These mutli media presentations are based on the formal elements of seminars which he says “are very powerful for being able to contain all kinds of content and media”. He works with powerpoint and laser pointers, as well as drawing on his background in visual art and music to create interdisciplinary performances which he describes to me in a business-like deadpan. Influenced by Sci Fi, Dave thinks of art making as “constructing parallel universes or alternate worlds” and points to the power of collaborative efforts in creating more fully formed realities than those of an individual creator.
Ashleigh Ball is well known as front woman for Vancouver band Hey Ocean! and her extensive career in voice over including culty fan favorite, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. She modestly describes her art practice as song writing and vocal explorations, adding that she is interested in “characters, soundscapes and beats that make people want to move their bodies”. Her interested in collaboration has been a through line in her career, growing out of childhood play with her sisters. Her and Sarah first worked together while studying at the Canadian College of Performing Arts, sparking in each other an interest for the potential interaction of music and movement in experimental forms. With a demanding career in the music industry, this project is a welcomed opportunity for Ashleigh to reconnect with this playful risk taking and interdisciplinary exploration.
These three artists are weaving choreography, music and video and with the dread and disinterest Vancouverites have for the imminent earthquake we’ve been promised. The group tells me that the initial inspiration for the work came in part from Sarah’s son Osman. At their first rehearsal, three year old Oz relayed a surreal memory of his future self living in a house that falls down.
Sarah Gallos, Dave Biddle and Ashleigh Ball premiere their new work at Shooting Gallery Performances Series #3, March 31st and April 1st