Kristen Lewis

Primordial

Primordial is an exciting work of solo dance theatre, combining cutting-edge contemporary performance practice, with a return to the origins of dance. The dance begins in the primordial ooze, and takes us through the stages of becoming human, only to find that the ooze still sticks to our underbellies…a familiar place to return to, even as we continue to evolve.

Primordial is a serious, but ultimately hopeful consideration of contemporary humanity—standing at “the edge of time,” in an age of ever-mounting precariousness and fear, facing an unknown future. But it is also a highly entertaining evening at the theatre, a carefully crafted drama made with the audience in mind (never boring), delivered by a powerful performer.

Kristen Lewis and David Westcott are Walking Bear Productions (founded in 2012). We have created two evening length works of solo dance-theatre to date, and several shorter works for both traditional theatre contexts, and for site-specific and gallery settings. We create emotionally-charged performance landscapes with a clear dramatic arc, articulated through a simple, but total theatrical language—using dance, movement, words, and visual effects. Compact, impactful works that can tour easily.

Kristen Lewis (BA Honours in Multi-disciplinary Arts, Dalhousie University) is a dancer and performance-creator, with a unique approach to dance and performance informed by many years of intensive self-directed study and a rigorous daily practice of solo dance improvisation.

David Westcott is a respected elder in the ceremonial traditions of the Lakota-Cree people; this background informs all we do, and gives him unique insight as a creator, director, and dramaturg.

 

Kristen is an experienced dance educator, and a committed advocate for the role of dance in public life. She is eager to collaborate with local communities to create outreach activities that respond to their unique needs. Outreach can include:

  1. accessible community dance workshops for diverse populations;
  2. Public talks in the theatre or in another public space (like the public library);
  3. Inter-disciplinary workshops to engage dance in dialogue across art-forms (e.g. with visual artists).

Our emotionally-charged work speaks to some of the most pressing concerns of contemporary life, and always seeks to find the hope amid the rubble. As such, it is accessible and interesting—dance “about something”— with the capacity to reach beyond traditional dance audiences to touch the lives of ordinary people. Past audiences have been surprisingly diverse: elders, youth, tradespeople and working-class folk (“I didn’t know I liked dance”), as well as habitual dance and theatre-goers.

Title of Work
Primordial
Date, Presenter and Location of Premiere
July 4, 2015, ArtSpring Theatre, Salt Spring Island, B.C. Produced with the assistance of a production residency at ArtSpring.
This project is a
full-length work
Length of Work (including intermission)
53 min
Is there an intermission
No
Number of Performers
1
Number of Touring Support Staff
2

 

 

Titre de l’œuvre
Primordial
Date, diffuseur et lieu de la première
July 4, 2015, ArtSpring Theatre, Salt Spring Island, B.C. Produced with the assistance of a production residency at ArtSpring.
Ce projet est
full-length work
Durée de l’œuvre (incluant l’entracte)
53 min
IY a-t-il un entracte?
No
Nombre d’interprètes
2
Nombre de personnel de soutien à la tournée
1

 

 

Excerpts:
Dance in Vancouver: November 2015
(as part of Justine Chambers’ site-specific “This is a Full Length” in the alcove of the Dance Centre)
International Dance Day (ArtSpring), April 29, 2014 & 2015

Gallery Versions:
Easter Art Show (Salt Spring Arts Council), March 25, 2016
Mahon Hall Land Art Opening (Salt Spring Arts Council)
(as part of visual artist Anna Gustafson’s installation): July 8, 2016

Previous work:
Paradise is Jagged (2013, ArtSpring & Nanaimo Fringe)

 

Contact Information/Coordonnées

Company Name / Nom de la compagnie
Walking Bear Productions
Address / Adresse
136 Sun Eagle Drive
Salt Spring Island, British Columbia V8K 1E5
Canada
Contact Person / Personne-ressource
Kristen Lewis
Phone / Téléphone
(250) 537-4440
Email / Courriel
walkingbearproductions@gmail.com
Website http://www.walkingbear.ca