Band of Artists has come on the scene
to challenge what you think “disability” means.
We’re not sappy or happy nor down in the dumps.
We’re a sincerely more weirdly, each hour, kind of bunch.
If you think you have us figured out, you haven’t, no doubt,
so come to our show and discover what “Fringe Fest” is all about!
a poem by Sutie Madison, Artistic Director for Band of Artists.
You’ve come across an exciting group called Band of Artists. A group devoted to advocating the creative livelihood of those living with Tourette’s Syndrome. You may have read some of our literature and gained a sense of what TS is, but do you know the talented people behind Band of Artists and what they have to offer? As our Artistic Director eloquently put, the performers and creative team behind BOA is “a sincerely more weirdly, each hour, kind of bunch”. As writer in residence I can attest that I have witnessed first hand this playful “weirdness”; a collective embracing of all that deviates from the norm.
I’ve had the privilege to sit in on a few rehearsals and I witnessed an eye-opening glimpse into this year’s show, A Dancing Disorder. During rehearsals, Sutie frequently speaks to her dancers about “natural” movements. “How is the body ‘naturally’ supposed to move?” she asks them. What is “natural” vs. what is “unnatural”? These are important considerations for any artist.
But Sutie is not just any artist/choreographer. Sutie has TS and she knows first hand that the disorder can be both a struggle and a gift. I can tell the dancers are inspired by the way she embraces her “disorder” and uses it as an artistic catalyst. The dancers are also aware of the difficulties and blessings of the disorder, not only in their observations of Sutie, but also from watching video of other TS survivors. The dancers observe and imitate these movements as they are incorporated into the choreography. What makes this process so organic is the freedom the dancers have to add their input and create choreography themselves. Watch the following video for a sneak peak at the collaborative efforts you will see play out in A Dancing Disorder.
This is your first glimpse into this artistic treat called Band of Artists. Check back soon for more updates.