michael j. morris

POP solo for 3 boys & an old prophetess

So in collaboration with CoCo Loupe, I created this solo today, as part of her new work in progress “3 boys & an old prophetess.” It is choreographed to Lady Gaga’s “Like It Rough.” It is unlike anything I’ve ever choreographed, it is a mild parody of pop music structure . . . but there are many reasons that I am in love with it. Thought I would share it.

Here is another solo I made from a “fishnetting” process, in which each of us (CoCo Loupe, Eric Falck, Jeff Fouch, and I) each improvised material and each of us structured our own material from whatever we retained from the improvisations.



This piece will be performed in
“Anthro(pop)ology II”

Date: Fri, Nov 13, Sat, Nov 14 (8pm shows) & Sun, Nov 15, 2009 2:00pm – 3:30pm at Columbus Dance Theatre

Event Description
Anthro(pop)ology is an on-going series of collaborations between edgy performance art groups that consistently critique pop culture crazyn-ness in their own uniquely entertaining ways. More to come on what local performance groups will be performing soon!

Contact: Anna Sullivan
Email: annadroid@gmail.com
Phone: 614-893-0264

More Info: www.amerifluff.com

Location Details
Columbus Dance Theatre
592 East Main Street
Columbus OH 43215 USA

3 Comments so far
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love it! dare i say maybe lady gaga helped bring out some gaga movement language-like qualities in your movement 😉 i enjoyed what you did with your hands while sort of squatted on the floor, also the revisiting of the sideways fish throw…and i always love demi pointe walks. wondering how you might feel about some super warp speed hand gestures in that sequence?

Comment by Maree

first of all….in your pop solo draft…that first “like it rough” launch moment is utterly fantastic. if you could handle it physically and we wouldn’t have to haul you the the emergency room for broken bones and internal injuries, i’d want the whole damned thing to be variations of that moment…..but dreaming aside…..

i find it intriguing that these drafts are based on the more “serious” prophetess solos. not that these newer POP solo drafts aren’t sincere or serious….they’re just reminding me that there are different kinds of “seriousness” and “sincerity” and i’m wondering if this is also a feature of the larger context of this work…..

for even though we’re thinking of these POP moments as “parodies” of POP music structures and trends, they don’t really show that. we’re actually building them with devout adherence to the larger, “higher” art sensibilities…..here we go with high/low….but you get what i mean?

makes me think that we still need to seek the farther ends of “extreme”…..so that whether or not the POP moments or the UNPOP moments resonate as high/low ….they also have the potential to resonate as something altogether different and away from that mode of comparison. they can define themselves or be defined in terms that are unique to themselves and away from that definition structure.

am i making sense?

final analysis: it doesn’t really matter what we say or think here or there….it’s what the physical body in combination with all of the other layers of stuff does and says in the moment of execution/performance. and at the moment, while these conceptual and compositional matters are on my mind, i’m really only genuinely interested in experiencing the visual nature of these things. they’re hilarious. and beautiful. and scary. and weird. and subtly outrageous. etc. etc. …….ETC.

Comment by CoCo

I’m so glad you love it. I think it is going to evolve a lot. Not sure in what directions, but in many ways this is a first or second draft. I think the more we work it, the more nuance and specificity it will find, in terms of dynamics, variation, relationship to the music, and it’s situation in the overall composition of the piece. As we continue to create and revise and video, I’ll try to keep sharing those “versions” here, in order to sort of trace the evolution. I love the potential connection between Gaga and Gaga. And that sideways fishthrow has become my new favorite thing. I just love it.

Thanks for articulating these things. Last night after 3am, I was doing well to just get the videos up here. I had so many ideas but nothing was coming into verbal language. Your comment really gets those ideas moving for me.
I agree about that first launch between amazing. I wish they all looked like that one . . . and at the same time I a drawn to their diminishment. I take a kind of pleasure in seeing the body exhaust and the execution of the movement getting less spectacular, less stunning, and almost “less successful” . . . even that seems to offer metaphors, about novelty, the fading of fads, how something that is initially spectacular quickly becomes old and familiar and “less successful.”
A part of my loves the idea of variations on that one movement . . . maybe that could come up at some other part in the piece? I like so much else in the solo as well, but I also get obsessed with repetition and variation and how a thing changes over time, esp. due to exhaustion in the body. Yes, I might die in the process, but it could be stunning. Let’s keep thinking/talking about that possibility.

I completely “get” the use of the high/low dichotomy for the sake of conversation. Of course it is all subjective and subject to discussion, but there is clearly a dichotomy of some kind in this process. This material was created extremely conceptually, mining my experience of the concept of “prophetess” and bringing that almost ecstatically into the body. Then to take that and structure it in such a way . . . I mean, a kind of ABCBD structure, especially to Lady Gaga, it seems to come with an expectation of jazzy, tricksy spectacle-oriented movement. To have little moments like the flopping and the floor scrubbing, even the really fast orgasm/masturbation, they seem in disparity with the sound/structure. It make me think of something Eric said after rehearsal about cliche, that most things that become cliche become so because there’s a little truth in them. Not that “popular” and “cliche” are perfectly synonymous, but it does make me think about the looking at what seems structurally or superficially “popular” “trite” or “cliche” and seeing what nuggets are there, what defies the expectation. Maybe that’s a place of potentially resonating as something different, as more than one thing at once.

I have other thoughts, but I have class in ten minutes and haven’t even changed, let alone warmed up. Must go, but I’ll try to return to this thread later. Thanks again for getting the ideas going!


Comment by morrismichaelj

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