Dance / Performance Work:


In the same way in which I layer disparate images and styles onto my canvases, I meld different forms of dance together in my performance pieces. Street dance such as hip hop and breakdance come together with more traditional movements taken from ballet and contemporary jazz, breaking down rigid boundaries that define these forms and creating vignettes that are humorous at the same time as commenting on the strange canons and styles of expression that define our society and culture.

The first series of images are video stills and photo documentation taken from B-Girl Flailing Swan Battles the Music Box Ballerina, performed at the Access Artist Run Centre Project Room in 2007.

The Music Box Battle is an obsessive compulsive, split personality, neo-classical ghetto, semi-improvisational dance/performance art/comedy piece for the ballerina bad-ass in all of us. In Music Box Battle, Flailing Swan battles femininity image stereotypes. In an attempt at living up to her ingrained idealized vision of womanhood, Flailing Swan gets stuck in a cycle of obsessive compulsive patterns and falls into the role of the fool. It is the acceptance of not fitting within the box that finally allows Flailing Swan to accept her individuality and "break" free.

Canadiana: a comedic ballet in three acts, the second work documented in this gallery, was performed at the Bau-Xi Gallery in Vancouver for Canadiana: and all places in between, in 2006. The work is comprised of three acts: Balletic Break-dancing Beaver, Great Canadian Squaredance, and Mossie Madness which examine the strange symbols that represent, and the often mad existence we lead in the Great White North.


The music used during the break-dance portion of B-girl Flailing Swan Battles the Music Box Ballerina is "Rhythm" by AWOL One and Daddy Kev from the album Souldoubt

The music for Canadiana: a comedic ballet in three acts was created specifically for and performed live at the show by Christian Nicolay.

all content © Lisa Birke 2015