<%@LANGUAGE="VBSCRIPT" CODEPAGE="1252"%> <% if request.querystring("id") ="" then strid=1 else strid= request.querystring("id") end if %> Mercurial Dance - Our Projects

Current Projects

<% if strid="2" then %>

Mysteries – In our own words

The Coventry Cycle of the Mysteries was this year produced by the Belgrade Theatre through their various youth groups to create a week of site specific and promenade performances. The plays were about reinterpreting the stories from the Bible and the Koran in our own words, modernising the themes and ideas to bring relevance to today’s world.

Mercurial Dance worked with the Acting Out Year 11 group on choreography for ‘Lost in Paradise CV6’ - a reinterpretation of Jesus in the Wilderness, written by the group and Vanessa Oaks. With the Acting Out year 10 Group we created a physical dance piece exploring the story of Moses. From a range of stories we selected Moses as it offered interesting questions to pursue with modern relevance. For example would Moses be viewed today as a freedom fighter or terrorist?

<% end if %> <% if strid="3" then %>

Dancers in Residence
The aim of this new initiative is to develop quality dance provision for children within the school environment, inspiring children and teachers.

Background to Mercurial Dancers in Residence
We have been In Residence at Frederick Bird Primary School for four years, delivering dance curriculum, creative projects and summer schools - Dancing to Learn rather than learning to dance. The motivation, skill and engagement - particularly with boys – has developed over this time and the culture and attitude towards dance change in an exciting and positive way. It is this and many other experiences that have inspired me to initiate Mercurial Dancers in Residence to develop dance further within Coventry primary schools with the Mercurial Dancers - our team of professional dancers who communicate our philosophy, standard of excellence and desire to inspire young people in dance.

Quotes about Mercurial Dance

“Oliver has enabled a large number of children to experience the thrill of performance, The children, especially boys, are enthusiastic and not embarrassed to dance. They are inspired and motivated by the link between new technologies and dance. Teachers become confident and skilful in teaching dance as part of the National Curriculum.”
Chris Lockwood, Headteacher, Frederick Bird Primary School

“We really loved every minute of if and found it so inspiring”
Michael - Participant

“You are a real asset to the region”
Jane Ralls - Dance Xchange, Brimingham

What you will gain

The Mercurial Dancers are

Interested?

Please contact us

<% end if %> <% if strid="6" then %>

The Bubble Chamber
The Bubble Chamber is an engaging and fun, digital-dance event taking place in 'void' shops throughout the West Midlands. Mercurial Dance is establishing a pioneering, three year program of dance and technology activity which will create new works of Digital Dance.

Working with young people aged 14-19 years old, The Bubble Chamber will be created as a public event for their friends, families and the day to day shoppers to enjoy. You can come and visit The Bubble Chamber at 8 City Arcade, in Coventry City Centre.

The first project in The Bubble Chamber is almost ready to launch! Check out our blog http://www.bubblechambercoventry.blogspot.com and see what the groups have been doing so far as the project comes to life. You can also become a fan on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/thebubblechamber and even follow us on Twitter: @MercurialD

There will a private launch on the 23rd of June 2010 and then the Bubble Chamber will be open to the public for exhibition from the 24th of June. Please visit our website for opening times: www.bubblechamber.org

The Bubble Chamber is part of the People Dancing Project, part of the West Midlands' Culture Programme for London 2012 funded by Legacy Trust UK, Arts Council England West Midlands and Advantage West Midlands: http://westmidlandsdance.com/peopledancing

<% end if %> <% if strid="7" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

The Bubble Chamber

The Bubble Chamber is an exciting programme of digital dance, animating void spaces through performance, film and computer technology. Housed in our empty shops performance and workshop space, the Bubble Chamber is located 28 Hereford Street in Coventry City centre.

In a year we have worked with over 400 participants at the Bubble Chamber, presented 22 dance performances, 10 digital dance installations running in total for over 16 weeks and hosted a variety of rehearsals and events. We have shared our work with audiences of over 14400 and presented the project, interactive installations and how Artists can support city centre regeneration through our shop window to a footfall of 455,455.

Our first phase of The Bubble Chamber was part of the Dancing for the Games programme, funded by Legacy Trust UK, an independent charity set up to create a cultural and sporting legacy from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games across the UK, Arts Council England and Advantage West Midlands with additional support from The Higgs Charity and Warwick Arts Centre.

A project aimed at 14 to 19 year olds, their friends and families, the Bubble Chamber celebrates young people's dance and digital creations. The project has toured to empty shops in the West Midlands sharing the empty shops work pioneered in Coventry.

The Bubble Chamber is about working in empty shops as temporary spaces for art and dance installations. Each installation is unique and tailored to the venue in which it is held. As a performance event the Bubble Chamber can be created with groups of students or professionals to establish a site specific show that evolves over time.

Working in empty shops offers a new way of engaging audiences of all ages with visual art and live performance. The Bubble Chamber project is part of this and is something we are reshaping and reconceiving in empty shops around the country.

www.bubblechamber.org
Facebook: The Bubble Chamber
Twitter feed: @bubblechamberuk
The Bubble Chamber

<% end if %> <% if strid="8" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Cardinal Wiseman



Launching the Bubble Chamber project, a group year 9 & 10 students from Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School and Language College in Coventry performed a durational piece over 4 hours.

Oliver Scott, director of Mercurial Dance, explained: 'Throughout the whole project we are going to explore a number of fascinating questions. How can we create a space within which the audience will want to dance and move? How does the interaction between the body, the projected image and the tracking across a screen affect choreography? How do people respond to space and engage with it and how can we exploit the potential of technology in this context?'

Young people involved, relished the challenge to use dance, live images and video to bring these empty shop spaces to life. Oliver continued: 'Students are getting the chance to develop their skills in dance and technology, using the professional software application Isadora, which is rarely if ever taught to young people.'

This performance set the standard for the rest of the project by initiating the dialogue between artistic ideas and technological spaces.

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="9" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Ash Green




This installation was made by 14 male students from Ash Green School and Arts College in Coventry. As a performance it builds on the legacy of the first installation and this kind of continuity is a key factor in the Bubble Chamber programme. Students attended workshops for an intensive week to develop a performance focused around the theme of computer games.

The idea was to produce a narrative quest for a journey around the space, split up into three zones. Each section of dance took place in a specific zone offering a different dynamic as imaginary places including zero G, the vortex and sirens. These identities informed the style and speed of the dancers' movement.

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="10" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

31LG by Lyng Hall School



In association with Coventry Sporting Futures, students from Lyng Hall School in Coventry created a performance for a public audience to enjoy at the Bubble Chamber. In this performance we explored the questions of how movement is framed. With dance and screen movement happening within a frame, for instance a camera frame, computer monitor, or TV screen, participants took this idea and developed it to introduce physical picture frames into their dance. We used this as a device for exploring how we look at ourselves and what perspectives we take and offer when performing dance.

In association with Coventry Sporting Futures

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="11" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

$ER2040 by Sidney Stringer Academy



Showcasing the creative work of young people, the Bubble Chamber was filled by 40 students from Sidney Stringer Academy who danced and mixed music for an excited audience. Over 8 sessions, the students visited the Bubble Chamber to rehearse and structure their digital dance. 20 of these young people were dancers with varied experience of dance practice and 20 were media students who were responsible for filming, mixing music and creating interactive displays.

The participants were given an opportunity to engage with new concepts of dance; they were introduced to new ideas about how technology and media can transform dance. The dancers and the media students were inspired to think about how these art forms combine and work together. The media group worked on filming the dancers and making interactive visual displays using Isadora. They also employed VJ skills to mix music using Ableton Live for the dancers during the performance.

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="12" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

On tour

Educational Workshops

The Bubble Chamber toured throughout the West Midlands in October 2010. The aim of the tour was to raise the profile of the project, introducing new groups to our ideas and expanding their skills. A wide range of young people were engaged and developed important skills in technology through educational workshops. Giving a wonderful platform to young people to find their own voice and explore their own creativity, the Bubble Chamber tour is inventive and inspirational and will bring vibrancy to otherwise empty areas of any city centre whilst also teaching participants new skills. To book a bubble chamber workshop please contact us.

Installation on Tour

In October, the Bubble Chamber was 're-hung' for an empty shop at Victorian Arcade in Walsall city centre. Using dance, live images, video and computer software, groups of young people from Walsall College and local youth centres turned an empty room into a space with eyes and ears that responded to changes as viewers moved through it. 'Visitors to The Bubble Chamber will find themselves interacting with the "gallery", their movements triggering a unique response from software used in the display,' explained Oliver Scott, director of Mercurial Dance and producer of The Bubble Chamber. 'Before they realise it visitors will be moving to explore the responses they get, effectively choreographing their own dance.' After initial success and following demand, the Bubble Chamber returned to Walsall for two weeks in April 2011. A new empty shop was brought to life as a gallery, showing a collection of interactive media and our digital dance installations. Many passers-by were intrigued by the display which offered something unique and inspiring for the public. For more details about the installation or for booking options please use the contact us page.

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="13" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Glow
Glow is an interactive digital artwork created by artists Oliver Scott and Ashley Brown for Coventry's City Arcade. Viewer's movement is captured on camera and translated into eye-catching graphics which evolve over time. Presented over three interactive screens in the windows of the Bubble Chamber the piece encourages animation, creativity and dance.
Artistically Glow is about the exploration of a specific question of how we can encourage an audience on a journey into dance through the Digital? A current theme for our work and artistic development.

Visually, a swarm of particles follows the movement and attempts to capture and engulf the engaging visitor. Their pathway through the city arcade is shown as a series of interconnected particles that mesh together, leaving a digital trail marking their presence. Throughout the day the tone and contrast change to reflect the changing mood and tempo of movement.

Technical Details
Glow uses several pieces of computer software, video hardware and an Apple iMac to realise the artistic vision. Isadora, used extensively for all of the Bubble Chamber projects, forms the main vision tracking by decoding the movement of the passer-by into data. This data is fed into a coded program, created with the open source language Processing, to create generative led digital artwork that evolves over time and responds to the users' movement. Engagement forces the artwork to alter tone and size and becomes a direct feedback invoking endless game mechanics and instilling a sense of ownership and pride.

Glow is available to tour and can be reworked for different spaces and media contexts. For booking information please contact us.

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="14" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Coventry Mysteries 2010



Celebrating the historic Coventry Mystery Plays, primary school pupils created a new dance performance for the Bubble Chamber based on the theme of forgiveness.

Working at the Bubble Chamber our empty shop inspired the question: Can you buy forgiveness? Our ideas for Forget Me Not Forgive Me Now arose from this starting point. In a materially obsessed culture we asked pupils to think if you can or if you should be able to buy forgiveness? What you might use to buy it or what might be take from you if you tried to? Some pupils took the characters of shoppers, traders, and grappled with ghosts and the dark zones of conscience in various places of the shop.

Young people from local primary schools have been involved in intensive, creative activity, expressing ideas, thoughts and opinions through dance and image manipulation technology. Performances have been supplemented by a continuous gallery-style exhibition and interactive digital art will be on display at The Bubble Chamber throughout the week.

The Mysteries is a unique festival in Coventry. This participatory arts festival takes a theme each year exploring moral and social issues. A festival to reinvent the traditions of the Coventry Mystery's Cycle making them relevant for the modern age, and express the desire for the regeneration and reimagining of urban spaces in the city.

This project was supported by Warwick Arts Centre Education Department and The Higgs Charity.

www.coventrymysteries.com

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="15" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Coventry Youth Dance – Massacre of the Innocents



In the Bubble Chamber we also hosted workshops and performances Coventry Youth Dance creating 'Massacre of the Innocents' for the festival extending our range as a performance venue.

Choreographer Alexis Haines said "It has been great to explore dance in unusual contexts choreographing a piece for the Bubble Chamber. Working on site has brought a new dynamic for the company and they have really risen to the challenge of performing with the audience in close proximity."

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="16" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Mysteries 2011 – It's My Right



For a second year the Bubble Chamber has been invited by the Coventry Mysteries Company (www.coventrymysteries.com) to create a new site-specific dance and technology installation in the heart of Coventry for the festival season. For the 2011 theme of Rights and Responsibilities we focused in on the UN Convention on the Rights of a Child, specifically Article 31: The right to play freely and to rest.

Working with two primary schools from Coventry the project offered transformational experiences for the pupils and teachers involved in the project. Confidence in performing, a new attitude to dance and changes in how the teachers viewed their class and their creative learning all took place over the project.

"Kitty took a lead role performing in It's My Right. Previously she struggled to perform in school assemblies, often being tearful, through the project she has gained so much confidence and courage. You could see her enjoyment and pride" – Class Teacher

Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble Chamber Bubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble ChamberBubble Chamber
<% end if %> <% if strid="17" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

Regeneration
The Bubble Chamber was conceived as an artist response to the changing face of our City Centres. In early 2009 initiated by artists, Coventry City Council developed a strategy to halt the decline of City Arcade, a group of 38 shops it owns on the edge of the city's main shopping centre. The area, hit hard by the economic recession, was suffering from a spiral of retail business failures and high levels of vacant units. In City Arcade, the Bubble Chamber was accompanied by Theatre Absolute's Shop Front Theatre and Artspace. Together we are using vacant spaces and form a creative hub in the area.

There are many artists in Coventry looking for creative spaces to develop their projects. Working in empty shops presents a new platform for engaging the public at street level. The initiative offers a new way of making live performance and visual art accessible to audiences of all ages. Coventry City Council's Support has been vital in recognising and enabling void spaces work.

"The Bubble Chamber has made a valuable contribution to regenerating City Arcade"

Andy Jack, Head of Development Directorate, Coventry

Andy continues 'The opportunity to allocate a shop unit to Mercurial Dance's Bubble Chamber project has helped to address key elements of the Council's property management strategy intended to arrest and reverse the decline by raising the profile of the area and encouraging footfall to support existing trade and promote future relocation'

"The Bubble Chamber initiative, underpinned by Mercurial Dance's reputation for artistic quality, has made an important contribution towards achieving our objectives. Combined with other arts and community based use of vacant space introduced into the area it has helped re-brand the City Arcade with a distinctive character that provides a strong foundation for continued recovery".

Hosting a Micro Conference in the Bubble Chamber at the end of the project brought together the different views and opinions of the Coventry Artists working in empty shops in City Arcade and wider. Offering a platform for the transformation of urban spaces through artists work there was a chance to present different approaches of the artists Theatre Absolute, Taking Birds and The City Council alongside ourselves. Since the success of the Arcade collective new initiative such as Meter Room Coventry and other empty space projects have taken place.

For more information about artists working in empty shops in Coventry visit The Arcade Project

<% end if %> <% if strid="18" then %>

The Bubble Chamber

The Bubble Chamber is funded by
Our first phase of The Bubble Chamber was part of the Dancing for the Games programme, funded by Legacy Trust UK, an independent charity set up to create a cultural and sporting legacy from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games across the UK, Arts Council England and Advantage West Midlands.

Additional support for the Bubble Chamber comes from the Arts Council England, Coventry City Council, The Higgs Charity and Warwick Arts Centre Education Department.

The Bubble Chamber is awarded the Inspired by 2012 Inspire Mark.

 


<% end if %>