Previously at the ICA - Events

Last Yearz Interesting Negro + BASICTENSION

Last Yearz Interesting Negro +: BASICTENSION

10 Feb 201811 Feb 2018

A group choreography by Jamila Johnson-Small

This iteration of BASICTENSION is a three hour performance and there is no fixed or recommended duration for watching. Come and go as you feel.  

BASICTENSION dances between control and abandon, it's a meditation on, and exit from, the canon of 'contemporary' dance in an age of collapse; a search for refuge in a climate of total exposure. Working with fragments of surround sound and commissioned music, shattered injunctions for movement gathered from disparate observers, and set within ruins and blackness, this work embodies deep pessimism about existence in the current order, while also searching for a way through and out.  

I started this project wanting to make meditation tapes to calm my rampant alienation and to slow my racing thoughts but what does calm look like when you embody countless contradictions, conflicts and traumas and language can’t stretch to hold you and it was never your language anyway and you look out at the city and it is like your beating heart, complicated, congested and broken. Some things need to break and I don’t want space or distance but to assume my hybrid form right here. I want to break this space open. I want to be broken open, like Leeloo in The Fifth Element.  

BASICTENSION is a shifting installation space holding a series of studies, these studies turn the questions driving my physical research outwards, to expose and disorientate, to tear at the edges of things and level some borders, to think about flow, to let some things in and to get some out, to access more ways of moving, thinking about moving, moving thinking and encountering dancing for performer and audience.   

Concept and choreography
Jamila Johnson-Small

Sound Design
Josh Anio Grigg

Josh Anio Grigg, Phoebe Collings-James, Junior XL and Shelley Parker

Light Design
Jackie Shemesh

Joey Addison

Rhoda Boateng

Performance research
Kitty Fedorec 
Stephanie McMann  
Fernanda Muñoz-Newsome 
Malik Nashad Sharpe 
Eve Stainton 
Alice Tatge

BASICTENSION has been supported by Live Art Bistro and using public funding from Arts Council England Grants for the Arts


E.g., 29-07-2021
E.g., 29-07-2021