Patricia trained in contemporary dance at LADMMI in Montreal, but she has always been interested in the relationship between dance and theatre, movement and storytelling. She has freelanced as a dancer, choreographed musicals, collaborated with writers on theatre projects – seeking out the potential of complete performance in which all the disciplines are utilized their fullest.
In dance-theatre, Patricia feels the most at home, the most free to explore abstraction and absurdity next to plot lines and narrative.
Patricia has, aside from (with)out, two other projects on the go that involve movement for non-dancers — a series of short solos created with local Toronto actors and an internship with Karen Kaeja (Kaeja d’Dance) on the community based project called Porch View Dances premiering the week after Fringe closes.
(with)out is firmly entrenched in a collaboration with music.
“I had worked with James [Everett] in the past and at that time was introduced to some of his music. I fell in love with it. I approached him about working on a show together, with the core concept of illustrating the stages of grief and he was really into it.”
Once their names were drawn for the Toronto Fringe, they found a lot of common ground in early development: the need to be storytellers, the need to be honest in performance, and also honest in its development: “to present a journey that arrived at it’s destination honestly.” Patricia explains.
Patricia describes her process as “process”, a never-ending path of redefining, trying new things, developing new collaborative relationships.
“I might give the dancers a task for the day. ‘today show me what anxiety looks like.’ Then they are given a time, say two hours. They are given crayons, paints, markers, lined paper, blank paper, they can use their bodies, they have James in space to create music and sounds. When they come to something that they feel needs to be shared or it gets to a time when they want feedback, I am there to support them.”
At this point Patricia says she allows her influence to slowly enter the room, while she distills the content created by her dancers into a story, a sequence of choreography, a show that is ready for an audience.
“I am blown away by everything that I was privileged to have witnessed for those weeks in the studio and feel so confident that we have brought the best parts of it to this show.” She says.
(with)out is a journey of joy, loss and redemption, standard but powerful fare. Patricia aims to work with movement, sound, lyric, dance and “the murky areas between” in a way that links deeply personal moments of the performers in a raw, live way. She hopes that audiences feel they need nothing to witness this piece but acceptance of the human condition and solace with the shared experience of being there.
To find audiences that fit these open-hearted parameters, Patricia feels the Fringe is the right way to go.
“I grew up with Fringe and thrive in an environment where expectation is that a show will be weird, non-traditional and, as the festival title suggests, on the “fringe” of mainstream work. It’s a really great outlet to plug into and allow creative freedom to follow.”
With innovative projects in the near future, clearly Patricia is not at a loss for inspiration or motivation to continue.
“One of the most liberating and important decisions I ever made in my life was deciding that creating art wasn’t a career, it was a way of life. The truth of the matter is that I create nearly every day. With or with out money, with or with out recognition it’s what I do and who I am. I had to come to a place where I accepted that in myself. If I could walk away I would, but it’s who and what I am. There is no other option.”
By: Patricia Allison and James Everett
Company: LastName FirstName Productions
Company origin: Toronto, ON
Choreographer: Patricia Allison
Show length: 60min.
Warnings: Mature Language
This performance is accessible for non-English speakers
July 04 06:30 PM
July 06 10:30 PM
July 08 08:45 PM
July 11 12:00 PM
July 12 07:30 PM
July 13 11:00 PM
July 15 12:00 PM
at-the-door tickets ($10)
advance tickets ($9 + $2 service charge)
Available up to three hours prior to the start of a performance: Online at www.fringetoronto.com
By Phone at 416-966-1062
July 2nd – 15th, daily, 9:30am – 6:30pm
In person at the Festival Box Office
July 4th – 15th, 12 – 10pm @ The Fringe Club, 581 Bloor St. W.
5 Pack ($45) – savings of $510 Pack ($82) – savings of $18!more info: www.fringetoronto.com