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Rosanna Gamson
Member Statement
I make evening-length dance theater pieces that take a long time to develop and that braid together several tracks of information- via text, music, and/or projections- as well as movement. Each project puts me in dialogue, through research and physical inquiry, with points of view I don't innately understand, whether artistically or culturally. While the pieces are different in content or form, the major theme that runs throughout is the complexity of living in the world together.With Layla, I researched Islamic architecture in Turkey, and investigated Sufi calligraphy, Iranian poetry, and ecstatic dancing. I initiate these projects out of genuine curiosity, the desire to question my own assumptions, and to seek insight into both selfhood and otherness. I research because I feel responsible for earning insight into the questions I'm raising. I work in LA where the tension between assimilation, identity, and home culture is a necessary conversation, and I want my work to reflect this.While striving to build a complete aesthetic world for each project, I use the structural conventions of melodrama- a narrator asking moral questions of the audience, big theatrical effects, virtuosity, heightened emotion set to music- inviting audiences to connect to the resonance of the subject and the legibility of the theatrical metaphors.