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Rosemary Lee

performers on stage with projections
Photo by Pau Ros
2000 – 2001

Passage brought together a group of thirteen performers ranging from 9 to 75 years old. They performed against a bleak and sweeping landscape, both on stage and screen.

With a poetic simplicity, it highlighted the essential humanity of the performers and the expansive beauty of the landscapes they inhabited. Music for the piece was composed by John Luther Adams.

Artist Rosemary Lee writes, “I wanted to experiment with a new method of creating a work that involved a range of ages.  Rather than working fast and intensively I wanted to spend a year with the group getting to know each other in a different way to the usual and to slow cook the work so it could evolve and appear at its own pace. I chose to revisit the same size cast as Egg Dances made in 1988 and make a new work for the Millennium and for the Southbank. Another desire was to try to work with huge scale projections throughout the piece and to collaborate with Peter Anderson in a different way with real time journeys, un-editing, happening across the screens.”

Commissioned by The Royal Festival Hall with support from Rescen and DanceEast.

“Lee’s concern with man and nature makes her a true original.”

Nadine Meisner, The Independent

“Flashes of humanity set against beak Norfolk landscapes, beautifully shot.”

Jenny Gilbert, The Independent on Sunday

“Entering like a band of timeless immigrants they mill about, mime proto-agricultural labour, play serious games of follow-the-leader, compete and think. It all worked a pretty wonderful, absorbing magic. Lee and company gave us things to look at and ponder.”

Donald Hutera, Dance Europe 2001

“Lee’s art achieves a transcendence that has little to do with commonly held aesthetic values in dance. It is about engaging with a life force that is expressed, not through the innocence of a body with no preconceptions of itself… In a sense Lee is making dances in uncharted territories, using a universal language that is very visceral and emotive to elicit material and this translates itself into a highly charged group energy… her dancers utter movement, like silent songs, from within themselves.”

Catherine Hale, Dance Theatre Journal 2001

Commissioned by The Royal Festival Hall with support from Rescen and DanceEast.

Premiered in April 2001 as part of a collection of work that merged film with live performance, at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London. It subsequently toured to Gardner Arts Centre (Brighton Festival), Warwick Arts Centre, and The Point (Eastleigh Dance Festival) in May/June 2001.

Directed by Rosemary Lee. Film by Peter Anderson. Design by Louise Belson. Lighting Design by Chahine Yavroyan. Performed by Omari Carter, Aella Jordan Edge, Zebida Gardner-Sharper, Henrietta Hale, Samantha Hayden-White, Gladys Hillman, Alex Howard, Rem Lee, Matilda Leyser, Colin McLean, Cosmo Mcmullan, Eddie Nixon, Santi Reiser

performers on stage with projections
Photo by Pau Ros