Mayday is a term known around the world for signaling distress, often at sea. It also happens to be the name of a Montreal dance troupe, which describes its works as “a cry for help and a call for change”.
According to the MAYDAY danse website, artistic director and choreographer Mélanie Demers sees the stage as a platform to question the role of the artist and the genre of theatre.
“She does not subject audiences to accusatory harangues, nor does she wallow in a mood of sterile resignation: she simply draws our attention to the dark side of the human condition,” the website states.
In that spirit, MAYDAY’s Confession Publique addresses themes of privacy and secrecy. Multidisciplinary artist Angélique Willkie will perform it as an autobiographical solo at the Scotiabank Dance Centre at 8 p.m. on May 26 and 27.
According to MAYDAY, Willkie delves “into the marshy depths of the psyche in a revolt against vulgar self-exposure that bombards us every day”.
Watch the trailer for Confession Publique.
Mayday honoured for Confession Publique
Willkie is an associate professor of contemporary dance at Concordia University, as well as co-chair of the university’s task force on anti-Black racism.
In addition to being a performer, she also sings and has taught contemporary techniques to several teaching schools in Europe. In the past, Willkie has collaborated with a wide range of artists, such as Belgian theatre director-choreographer Isabella Soupart, French trapezist Mélissa VonVépy, and Dutch choreographers Arno Schlutemaker and Pia Meuthen, according to her biography on Concordia’s website.
Meanwhile, Confession Publique won awards for best choreography for Demers and best interpretation for Willkie at Les Prix de la danse de Montréal in 2022.
Plastic Orchid Factory will present Confession Publique by Mayday/Mélanie Demers [Tio’tia:ke] on May 26 and 27 at Scotiabank Dance Theatre. For tickets and more information, visit The Dance Centre website. Follow Pancouver on Twitter @PancouverMedia.