“The Animal Empire – You are not invited” is a performative research in collaboration with Peter Vadim.
We find it urgent to do this project when the political and public discourse are extremely harsh to anyone who are different. We feel the urge of speaking up because I am – even though born and raised here in Denmark – often viewed as non-Danish and Peter – who defines himself as non-heterosexual. We and our social backgrounds and communities are getting attacked and we want to defend ourselves. But we know from experience that defending and attacking do not get us anywhere. It only makes the gap between groups of people bigger and sorrow and loneliness even bigger. Instead, we wish to find out why, what and how we experience in relation to this matter.
Our research is based on this:
Through dance and choreography, we investigate the paradoxes, dilemmas and ambivalent feelings and thoughts when we experience being excluded, dehumanized and compared to pests.
The dilemmas, paradoxes and issues are:
1) We accept the image of us as pests and oppose us the image
2) We want to belong but we create our own communities that separate us from others
3) When dehumanized, anger is our strategy of survival and the path to our self-extinction
4) To some extent, we experience liberation in oppression
5) Some prominent politicians compare us to vermin when we threaten their worldview. But then those politicians are also vermin, presumably, when they threaten our worldview.
Now that we are all pests we might as well get the best out of it. We explore how we can communicate than through anger, hate speech and threats.
The title “The Animal Empire – You are not invited” implies that some people belong and some people don’t. But who are the animals? And who are not invited? These and the above mentioned are some of the many questions we are exploring and so far only more have emerged.
The Animal Empire – You are not invited are full of ambiguities and it reflects on our dance and bodily aesthetics where we among other combine traditional folk dance with butoh and howls from wolves.
The performative research is divided into three parts: 1) Performance 2) Interaction with the audience 3) Panel discussion consisting of artists, researchers, politicians and consultants.
The Animal Empire – You are not invited will take place at Bådteatret June 22-25th as part of Ubåden’s program.
The project is supported by Dansk Artist Forbund.
Also, we have received support from Sportgoodsfonden to develop further on this project and to perform in public spaces.