The Laughing Game (2020)
THE LAUGHING GAME is a solo dance work that explores the releasing and cleansing forces of laughter. A choreographic research that navigates through laughters' heterogenous physical and emotional landscapes and that portrays laughter as an act of human belonging and empathy as well as embodied answer to emotional overload. THE LAUGHING GAME oscillates between a dance, an installation and a concert. Body and voice are employed to unfold laughter as social communication, bodily state, stirring sound and as an explosive way of losing control. Breaking with the common sense of looking at laughter as only being funny, laughing will be portrayed as a physical manifestation of a broad range of mixed feelings. Exposing the wide range of emotions present within laughter, its contagious force and its liberating effect, laughter is being alienated – as an invitation for the audience to encounter laughter with fresh eyes and sharp senses.
The audience experiences the performance in close proximity which activates the audience's physical empathy. The spectators are invited to join the performance area together with the performer who will move among them. That way the performer and the audience will blend, making all individuals visible, inviting to observe each other and giving the feeling that everyone is part of the performance. Some will be helplessly caught in the contagiousness of the performer's laughter while others are purely observant.
This way of audience engagement situates the work at the verge of interactivity as the spectators will be transformed into participants by their pure presence and without asking them to do anything specific. The audience will contribute to the performance by their immediate and unfiltered reactions.
Concept, Choreography and Dance: Antoinette Helbing
Sound: Niels Bjerg
Light: Carina Backmann Persson
Costume: Inbal Lieblich
Research supported by: Statens Kunstfond, Åbendans, Vestjyllands Højskole and Teaterøen
Production supported by: Aaben Dans Roskilde and Forsøgsstationen
Thanks to: Niels Bjerg and Daniel Nordback
Length: 30 Minutes
Ubåden/Bådteatret (2.2020), BIRCA Bornholm/Bornholms Kulturuge (9.2020), Teater Momentum Odense (5.2021), Copenhagen Stage Festival (6.2021), Danceallyearlong Festival Odense (11.2021)
PASSAGE Festival 28.7.2022 / Bornholms Kulturuge (21.9.2022), Sounded Bodies Festival Zagreb (11.10.2022)