Vera Tussing graduated from London Contemporary Dance School, and has worked as a choreographer and dancer throughout the UK, Belgium and Europe. Her work has been commissioned and co-produced by institutions including ROH2 for ‘Firsts’ at the Royal Opera House, The Place in London, as well as STUK Art Centre, Leuven, Monty Theatre, Antwerp and Storm op Komst at De Warande in Tournhout.
In 2007 she started her collaboration with Albert Quesada to create Trilogy, a set of three pieces exploring musical structures - with the focus to create danced listening experiences.
Vera’s research into the emotive possibilities of sound, and how the senses are structured in performance, continued with the creation of The Icarus Project for The Place Prize, 2010 and continued withYou Ain't Heard Nothing Yet, which premiered at Stuck, Leuven in 2012. She has also developed a sound installation called Sound Bed which has been touring for several years with different commissions. In 2014 Vera T Projects premiered a new creation under the name of T-Dance which builds on her work regarding the senses as a major theme in her work.
Her “phenomenally successful installation” (Londondance.com) Sound Bed (2011) and latest creation T-Dance (2014) continue to tour. Vera was part of ChoreoRoam 2010, and has joined the team of Work Place Artists at The Place in London.
She is currently setting up new research running under the working title of WAVES for 2014/2015, while continuing to develop and present Sound Bed. She also tours as a performer in Birdwatching 4X4 by the Belgian Choreographer Benjamin Vandewalle.
Vera Tussing’s sequel to T-Dance continues to work with movement and tactility. The dancers and the public share the space. Arranged in an ellipse, the public embodies the boundary of the theatrical space. The skin forms the fourth wall.
Social acts, such as shaking hands and high fives, are interspersed with classic choreographic patterns that we can experience ‘up close’. The ellipse arrangement creates a dynamic between centre and periphery, intimacy and distance.
The spectator transforms from a passive to an engaged participant, who, along with the dancers, discovers and shapes the space. In this sense, Tussing aspires to the dynamics of a good conversation: a delicate balance between listening and talking, where no one takes their position for granted.
Direction: Vera Tussing, Research/ Choreographic Co-Creators: Ben McEwen, Erik Nevin, Meri Pajunpää, Typhaine Delaup, Camille Prieux, Solene Weinachter, Vera Tussing, Zoltan Vakulya Esse Vanderbruggen, Contextual Research/ Dramaturgical advice: Lucie Beauvert, Michael Picknett, JS Rafaeli, Alexander Vantournhout, Sound/Video/Photography during Research: Emanuele Costantini, Alessandra Rocchetti, Benjamin Sommabère, Zoilly Molnar, Design in Collaboration with Lucie Beauvert, Thanks to: Kate Goodwin and The Royal Academy of Arts & The Work Place at The Place, Supported by: Flemish Authorities, Co-produced by STUK Leuven, The Place, Life Long Burning/workspacebrussels with the support of the Culture Programme of the European Union, Research Supported: Commissioned by The Place with additional support from Klein Verzet, using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. Dance East, Pavilion Dance South West and Royal Academy, Residencies: STUK Leuven, WILD CARD RESIDENCY, Ultima Vez & CND Montpellier / Life Long Burning, EU Culture Programme, The Place ( London), workspacebrussels, PianoFabriek Brussels, BUDA Kortrijk, Graner Barcelona, Kaai Studios, Diffusion: www.boldbxl.be, Production: Klein Verzet & Vera Tussing
T-Dance is a piece exploring touch and connection. How does tactility, with all its symbolic power, fragility and humour attain meaning? How are we connected even when separated by distance, time or context? How do we touch without touching? Four dancers explore empathy and physical memory, questioning the limits of the body, and the mind’s connections. Without ever leaving their seats, the audience are called to inhabit the same imaginative space as the performers, in an invitation to participate in an empathetic, imagined touch.
Duration 55 minutes
People on road 5 (4 Performer, 1 Technician)
Freight No freight necessary
Wraparound Masterclasses for professional dancers; Schools workshops; post-show talks etc
“…the sense of anticipation causes goose pimples, proving quite literally the effect of words on physical senses… subtle and clever, managing to be both lighthearted and thought-provoking… it’s exciting to think where T-Dance will go.” Londondance.com
Supported by the Flemish Authorities (BE)/ Produced by Vera Tussing / Klein Verzet/ In collaboration with: Made at The Place (London) / Vera Tussing is a Work Place Artist. Coproduction: workspacebrussels, Kunstencentrum STUK. Creation Supported by: The Place, STUK Leuven, Workspace Brussels, wp Zimmer, Antwerp, El Graner, Barcelona. Research Supported by: Ontwikkelingsgerichte Beurs 2012, Workspace Brussels, wp Zimmer, Antwerp; The Place, London; Kunstencentrum Vooruit Gent, PARTS studio Space, Jardin d’Europe: Regional Creative Atelier “Jozef Nadj”, Kanjiza, Serbia
In Sound Bed a lone audience member lies down on a platform at the centre of the action. They close their eyes. Speakers are gently placed at their head and feet. A soundscape, suggesting cinematic narratives begins playing.
As the piece progresses, performers move the platform and the speakers through the space. The audience member is completely passive as they are moved, passing through different ‘sound rooms’, becoming part of the dance that is unfolding. Audience is invited to view this dance from the periphery of the space. The movement of the dancers and speakers acts as a mode of live sound mixing, physicalising the machinery of special effects. The basic concept of Sound Bed explores in a live performance, a version of the narrative, temporal and spatial leaps available to cinematic editing.
Duration 7 minutes (looped throughout the day for each)
People on road 3 (4 Performer, 1 Technician)
Freight Two suitcases, two Trolleys (large suitcase size) can be transported as oversize luggage
Wraparound Masterclasses for professional dancers; Schools workshops; post-show talks
“I waltzed in the sky...the description on the leaflet does not do justice to the uniqueness of the experience. Thanks so much. I feel like a different person for it.”
“Dreaming glory! If only it would last forever - or did it? At times I completely left my body although it was such a rich physical experience....I noticed the olfactory landscape changing too. Deeply blissful.”
“When is the feature length coming out?” Participant quotes
Sound Bed is created in collaboration with The Place (UK), STUK (BE), WorkspaceBrussels (BE) PACT Zollverein (DE) and DeVIR/CAPa (PT). Sound Bed – Cinematic Bed commissioned by Bloomberg/The Place (UK) for Comma 40. Sound Bed – Storm Op Komst, comissioned by StormOpKomst, Turnhout (BE). Supported by the Flemish Authorities (BE) Produced by Vera Tussing / Klein Verzet.
Sun, Sun, Sun (2013)
You Ain’t Heard Nothing Yet (2012)
The Icarus Project (2011)
May I… (2009)
Be Water (2008)
With Albert Queseda
Trilogy (2011) (Oh Souvenir, Your Eyes, Beautiful Dance)