Marianna Kavallieratos is a choreographer and dancer from Athens, Greece. She studied contemporary dance at the London Contemporary Dance School and SUNY Purchase, New York as well as studying the Martha Graham Technique, at Graham Studios, NYC. While living in New York in the 90’s she met Robert Wilson, becoming one of a group of young artists who collaborated in founding and shaping The Watermill Center on Long Island. She has maintained a strong physical and creative presence at the center ever since, as a mentor and teacher of dance and movement, and has collaborated and performed in many Robert Wilson productions including: T.S. Eliot, Une Femme Douce, Persephone, The Days Before DDD III, Wings on Rock, Prometheus, Alcestis (the opera), Relative Light and Odyssye. On her return to Europe, she danced for Kobalt Works in Brussels for several years, before returning to Athens, where as well as working as a freelance choreographer for clients including The Greek National Theatre, she has so far choreographed and presented four full length works of her own (previously under the name Klokworks) which are: Moment (Athens Festival 2010), Auto Run (Athens Festival 2012), Recalculate(Onassis Cultural Centre, Athens 2013) and Stations (Athens Festival 2014).
Dom Bouffard is a musician and composer from London, UK. From 1997 to 2006 he played guitar with Alt Rock bands Sona Fariq and Queen Adreena, touring internationally with artists including Marilyn Manson, Sonic Youth and Public Enemy, and collaborating with producer Jagz Kooner (Primal Scream) on remixes for artists including Massive Attack and Kasabian. He has since worked as a performer/arranger on the Robert Wilson/Berliner Ensemble productions “Shakespeare’s Sonnets” (2009) with Rufus Wainwright, and “Lulu” (2011) with Lou Reed; composed two Wilson radio plays (“Monsters of Grace II” and “Tower of Babel” for ARD/BBC), and “Flying” — a video portrait featuring Lady Gaga at the Musée du Louvre. Dom’s work, which also spans film, TV and fashion, includes his radio piece “WW1” (2015, hr2) which was nominated for the Karl Szucka and Kriegsblinden Prizes, and several dance works with Marianna Kavallieratos: “Recalculate” (2013), “Stations” (2014), dance film “Metal Mark”, and installation “4WALLS” (both 2016). He is also a singer-songwriter with Alt Country/Punk Blues duo Emperors of Rome.
While in residence at The Watermill Center choreographer/performer Marianna Kavallieratos and composer/sound-artist Dom Bouffard will develop the intermedia performance work titled DEATH. Incorporating movement, sound, color and real-time digital media, the piece seeks to be a celebration of life, which without death would be meaningless. It is a study of how Western cultures’ increasing distancing from, and denial of their relationships with death impacts our lives, and the ways in which the power of ritual — a phenomenon usually associated with “primitive” and/or “religious” cultures — may be worth re-interpreting and re-developing in a modern rational/scientific world.
DEATH will ask if the gradual and inevitable rejection of religious narratives has inadvertently “thrown the baby out with the bathwater”, leaving us with thin, grey, humanist replacements for the rich, dramatic performances which, for thousands of years, have guided people through their most important experiences; and whether, compared to cultures which actually embraced the prospect of “a good death” (such as warrior cultures from Ancient Greece to the Samurai that placed strength and honor above personal survival), our lives have actually been impoverished by our refusal to embrace, treasure, or even take pride in our own mortality. By trying to shut out the darkness, has life become colorless?
In Process @ The Watermill Center invites the community to engage with our resident artists on Saturday afternoons through open rehearsals, workshops, studio visits, lectures or artist talks.
Watermill’s mission is to provide artists and thinkers the opportunity to focus on the development of their work and practice. Artists-in-Residence have gone on to perform at venues and festivals including the New Museum, Roulette, PS122, American Realness, Clocktower Gallery, Performa, Vienna’s Donaufestival, Kampnagel in Hamburg, CPR – Center for Performance Research, and the Baryshnikov Arts Center.
November 11, 2017