Eisa Jocson’s newest creation, “Your Highness” will have its world premiere on July 27, 8 pm, and July 28, 3 and 8 pm, respectively, at the CCP Little Theater. Thereafter, it will be performed at several major European performing arts festivals from August to September 2017.
The work is a production by Ballet Philippines and Künstlerhaus Mousonturm Frankfurt am Main (Germany), in co-production with Internationales Sommerfestival Kampnagel (Germany), Zürcher Theater Spektakel (Switzerland) and La Bâtie—Festival de Genève (Switzerland).
Jocson is an internationally renowned artist who has been creating and touring her works in Asia, Europe, America and Australia. Educated as a visual artist and trained as a ballet dancer, she won her first pole-dancing competition in Manila in 2010 and began her international dance career with public interventions like “pole-tagging” here and abroad.
Her three solos, “Death of the Pole Dancer” (2011), “Macho Dancer” (2013) and “Host” (2015) toured extensively in major festivals abroad. Under the “Happyland” (2017) series, her new creations, “Princess” a duet with Filipino performance artist Russ Ligtas and Your Highness are a continuation of her investigation into Filipino labor, performance of happiness and production of fantasy within the happiness empire.
Your Highness is her first ensemble creation, and is the first of all her works to be premiered and produced in the Philippines.
In Your Highness, the classically trained dancers masterfully alternate between stylized Disney gestures and standards of ballet classics like Giselle, Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake—and explore the fine line between portrayals of happiness through ballet history and princess archetypes in a globalized entertainment industry.
The massive employment of Filipino performers by Hong Kong Disneyland has led to a dire brain drain, with its impact strongly felt in the ballet company, which has lost half of its top dancers within the last decade. Against this backdrop, choreographer Eisa Jocson has now created a dance piece with five young dancers of the Ballet Philippines.
“As an independent Filipina choreographer, it is a unique and inspiring adventure to collaborate with Ballet Philippines in creating this new ensemble work,” Jocson shared.
“It is exciting to see the dancers push their capacities into unknown terrain with incredible virtuosity. And I am looking forward to share this performance born out of an intense and meticulous process of exploring the dancer’s and ballet’s manifold bodies and voices,” the choreographer finally noted.
Your Highness’ international artistic team is led by Jocson (choreographer), Gia Gequinto, Stephanie Cabral, Maila Habagat, Alexis Piel, and Carlo Padoga (Ballet Philippines dancers), Arco Renz and Anna Wagner (dramaturges), Teresa Barrozo (music and sound design), Florian Bach (lighting design), and Dennis Maristany (costume design).
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