Northeast Times

Fringe in Fairmount

The Fringe brings out­sider art to your door­step, in­clud­ing a show at the Per­form­ance Gar­age on Brandy­wine.

It’s a once-a-year — and very of­ten a once-in-a-life­time — op­por­tun­ity for Philly-based artists, as well as those from around the globe, to present their work free of a se­lec­tion pro­cess. So says the mis­sion state­ment of the Philly Fringe Fest­iv­al.

The Fest­iv­al, which this year runs from Sept. 2-17, cre­ates a city­scape filled with theat­er, dance, mu­sic, and everything in between. One of this year’s par­ti­cipants is The Maeko Film Pro­ject, present­ing their Whis­key and Ele­phants on Sept. 4, 5 and 6 at the Per­form­ance Gar­age, 1515 Brandy­wine St.

Whis­key and Ele­phants is the over­all title giv­en to the Film Pro­ject’s present­a­tion, Rich­mond, Vir­gin­ia based cho­reo­graph­er and film­maker, Charli Bris­sey, founder and dir­ect­or of the Pro­ject, ex­plained.

“I called the pro­duc­tion Whis­key and Ele­phants be­cause, for whatever reas­on, ele­phants al­most al­ways ap­pear in all the work I do,” said Bris­sey who will be premier­ing Weight, a 40-minute video-dance ex­plor­ing the dis­tinc­tions of bur­dens and dreams by ven­tur­ing through the sur­real land­scape of the hu­man heart and psyche.

“And through a series of raw, gritty and un­re­fined in­ter­views, there is some sort of whis­key in­volved,” she ad­ded.

“The show will be an ec­lect­ic mix of video, dance and mu­sic. I am primar­ily a dan­cer with a de­gree in cho­reo­graphy, but I’ve al­ways been in­volved with videos. My pas­sion has been to com­bine the two to­geth­er,” said Bris­sey.

Since the Philly Fringe is an un­filtered fest­iv­al, where a plat­form is provided for new and es­tab­lished artists to present their work, Bris­sey said she felt this would be a per­fect op­por­tun­ity to dis­play her artistry as well as that of oth­ers.

She said, “This is the first time my video is be­ing shown. I couldn’t fig­ure out what to do with it once it was done. I wanted to premiere it some­where dif­fer­ent from the usu­al ven­ues in Vir­gin­ia and I thought of the Philly Fringe Fest­iv­al, but I didn’t know any­one here. So, as much as I wanted to be part of the Fest­iv­al, I nev­er thought it would hap­pen. But the people at the Fest­iv­al helped me to pro­duce the show here and I’m very grate­ful.”

On Sept. 4, New York City-based cho­reo­graph­er Megan Har­rold will be join­ing in Whis­key and Ele­phants and premier­ing a new work titled The Talk­ing Cure. Based in ana­lyz­ing the com­fort sens­ib­il­it­ies of the rock­ing mo­tion, the move­ment will ex­plore ro­mance and friend­ship while an in­stall­a­tion of a house is be­ing built through dance.

“Today, my ma­jor re­spons­ib­il­ity as dir­ect­or of this Pro­ject is to mainly plan the con­cepts for the shows, and gath­er in guest artists. A big part of the Pro­ject is to provide a plat­form for oth­ers to show their work as I am cre­at­ing my own,” she said.

And as far as the goal of the Film Pro­ject, Bris­sey said it is simply to dis­play hu­man­ity and di­min­ish il­lu­sion by present­ing raw, au­then­t­ic and hon­est glimpses of who and what we are as be­ings through video and move­ment.

“We aren’t so much about present­ing our opin­ions as we are just try­ing to cre­ate mo­mentum in people to have them think and ques­tion them­selves, and maybe make new choices,” Bris­sey con­cluded.

For times and tick­et in­form­a­tion, call 215-413-1318••

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