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Faultline

By Shobana Jeyasingh Dance

Episode 2 of Surface Tension turns the spotlight on Faultline from 2007. Presenter Sanjoy Roy recollects his memories of the piece, the style, aesthetic and evocative atmosphere. The anxiety, the coolness and the swagger of what it meant to be young, British and Asian at that time. A shift in cultural climate after the 2005 bombings - when young Asian men became suspicious in society. He speaks to Shobana Jeyasingh about the triggers that shaped the piece; the 2005 London bombings, subsequent raids and the hysterical unease that was pervasive in every day life. All of which contributed to the look and feel of Faultline. Shobana talks about the various creative collaborations that all knitted together in the final piece; the film which acted as the prologue, the initial introduction of the dancers, characters and music - in particular the voice of Patricia Rozario. Plus the direct influence of Gautam Malkani’s book Londonstani, published in 2006, which had a profound effect on the movement generation phase of Faultline. We talk to author Gautam Malkani about his own experience of growing up in London, the culture adopted by Asian rude-boy gangs. He talks about the hyper masculinity, language, posing and posturing that characterised his book and reads some excerpts. We hear Gautam’s reaction on hearing that his book had inspired a dance piece and how Shobana was able to encapsulate the essence and themes in a very direct choreography of raw aggression. We speak to Robin Rimbaud (Scanner) who composed the score for Faultline. Shobana wanted him to create a soundscape that produced a dark, charged and intense atmosphere; a sonic picture of London in 2007 using electronic music. Composer Errollyn Wallen joins the conversation to talk about how she collaborated and shaped the music to compliment Robin’s soundscape. In the final section we interview artist and filmmaker Pete Gomes who produced the visuals and the approach he agreed on with Shobana. Series Producer, Melissa FitzGerald @Melissafitzg   Shobana Jeyasingh @SJeyasinghDance Born in Chennai, India, she currently lives and works in London. Her acclaimed, highly individual work has been seen in all kinds of venues, including theatres, outdoor and indoor sites and on film. Her work taps into both the intellectual and physical power of dance, and is rooted in her particular vision of culture and society. Shobana’s work is often enriched by specially commissioned music composed by an array of contemporary composers — from Michael Nyman to beat-boxer Shlomo. Her eclectic band of creative collaborators have included filmmakers, mathematicians, digital designers, writers, animators, as well as lighting and set designers. Gautam Malkani @GautamMalkani Robin Rimbaud (Scanner) @robinrimbaud Errollyn Wallen @ErrollynWallen  Pete Gomes @gomespete Sanjoy Roy @sanj0yr0y Sanjoy Roy (London, UK) has been writing on dance for the Guardian since 2002, and has contributed to many other publications including the New York Times, New Statesman, Dance Gazette and Dancing Times, and is London correspondent for Dance International magazine. He is currently also the editor of Springback Magazine, a Europe-wide online dance journal launched in 2018. First writing about Shobana in 1997, he has since written reviews and articles on her work, as well as interviews, programme notes and education materials for her company.

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