In the 2009 performance Transaquania - Out of The Blue, the audience was immersed in an out-of-this-world experiment. Using the silky, warm water of the blue lagoon as a stage and theatre, the lava field and geothermal factory as a backdrop set, the performance freely revised theories of evolution and tribal rituals to create a physical mythology of this very unique manmade lake. The blue water became the cradle of a new life, evolving rapidly towards a rising civilization before disappearing back into the water from whence it was born.
On dry land, we created movement material in a studio that once confronted in the water, forced us to take into consideration two of its inherent primordial elements: the lack of gravity and the absence of oxygen. Dancers were literally gasping for air, while their body was suddenly much lighter and half floating. Coming back to the studio and imagining what could be a sequel of the blue lagoon experience where water was the pivotal element: we were sure of one thing, gravity and oxygen would be central to this piece Transaquania- Into Thin Air.
Sources of inspiration went from pictures of the population of the island of Miyakejima, in the Izu Archipel in Japan (its occupants have to permanently wear gas-masks because of high levels of Sulpher in the air from a dormant volcano), to the recent discovery of an animal called Loriciferans which requires no oxygen to live, as well as footage of cosmonauts evolving in zero gravity environments.
Working in a team comprised of two choreographers and one visual artist, somehow we find ourselves less concerned with choreography and more involved in creating living sculptures. The costumes and set elements become departure points for exploring new ways of moving and new physical possibilities; for re-defining our human body.
This is what the moves and mutations of this piece are trying to portray: a poetic story of evolution in an environment constantly in movement. This piece is maybe our most intuitive ode to the incredible powerful instinct of life, and the way it transforms us in our insatiable quest of survival and growth.
Premiered October 7th 2010
Created by: Erna Ómarsdóttir, Damien Jalet & Gabríela Friðriksdóttir in co-operation with the dancers
Music: Valdimar Jóhannsson & Ben Frost
Costumes and set design: Gabríela Friðriksdóttir & Hrafnhildur Hólmgeirsdóttir
Light design: Kjartan Þórisson & Aðalsteinn Stefánsson
Sound: Baldvin Magnússon