ELISA OHTAKE

Harmless Choreography

Performance conceived specially for X Moradias [X Houses], a project staged on the balcony of an apartment in São Paulo. Tiny audience (two spectators) and short duration (10 minutes). Performed about 20 times daily over 4 days.

Two anti-peacemakers declare war and love for the city of São Paulo. The performance brings together pessimism and optimism, extreme hazard and playfulness, untainted love and urban violence. Viewers donning bulletproof vests are ushered to a stressful environment in which a sort of postmodern guerrilla group is gathered. Suicide bombers are kitted up in a tense, naturalistic setting while audience members/participants attend training for guerrilla tactics. Gradually, however, participants realize that there is an ambivalence, a love-fest-cum-massacre in the city of São Paulo, a colorful guerrilla wielding children’s toys in a setting that is at the same time utopian and dystopian. Participants find themselves in the middle of a visual-artistic explosion, in this context showing the city in all its plasticity and complexity. For the grand finale, the “guerrilla” ironically poise to dance a “harmless choreography” for participants. The performance blurs lines between dichotomous concepts and anarchizes totalistic notions to suggest complexity and introduce political discussions of the body in the city and in choreography. Lineu Palaia is just the right actor for this performance of Harmless Choreography, being a former lieutenant with the São Paulo army reserves and a former classical dancer at the city’s official ballet school.

Credits
Concept, director, scriptwriter: Elisa Ohtake
Performance: Lineu Palaia and Elisa Ohtake
Production: Elisa Ohtake
Project X Housing