|Beached is a dance work commissioned by and created for Ch4pter. It is choreographed in collaboration with the dancers, Paula Hampson, Andrea Buckley and Ruth Spencer with an original score by Jonathan Lever. Ch4pter are committed to undertake work that will challenge them as artists as well as allowing their collaborators to have the freedom to explore and develop their own work. They put process first. Beached was therefore no ordinary commission for me.
I do not often have the luxury of working deeply with dancers such as Ch4pter. The combination of their support and a fellowship year from the Arts Council meant that I was able to truly explore and take time to see what arose from our time together, be it a film, an installation or a live work. I set myself the task to create a work that really highlighted these extraordinary dancers’ strengths and potential as performers.
Beached began life under the expansive windswept skies of East Anglia where the dancers and I spent a week-long residency at Snape Maltings in 2001. A further period of experimentation and rehearsals took place in London and Liverpool in 2002. A first version of Beached was shown at the Bluecoat Arts Centre, Liverpool. The work was then revived and toured in 2005-06.
Niki Pollard, writer and researcher, watched many of the rehearsals. We began to discuss and comment upon our notebooks of rehearsals. Material for several research papers arose from this collaborative investigation as well as a new work in itself, Beached: A Commonplace Book.
This section of the website includes a selection of our writing on Beached, a gallery of images of the dancers, and more information about the book.