The Blank Album
- Kelly Apter
- 13 March 2008
As all musicians know, putting together an album isn’t just about writing songs. Running order, track length and variety of sound all come into play. So when choreographer, Natasha Gilmore decided to use the album model to create her latest dance piece, she had all that to consider, too. Giving us a pre-CD blast from the past, The Blank Album is split into Side A and Side B.
And as Gilmore says, finding a mixture of moods and emotions was high on the agenda. ‘I was interested in the way an album can go from a very calm, delicate track into something really full-on and vibrant,’ she explains. ‘So there’s a real diversity in the dance and we use a range of styles, from moshing to ballet.’
Performed by four dancers who play instruments, and one musician who dances, the show is a diverse mix of music and movement – both inextricably linked. ‘We don’t separate the two,’ says Gilmore. ‘So a performer might be singing, but they’ll also be standing on their head. Or playing the guitar or violin and dancing around the stage at the same time.’
As the tracks of the album unfold, the differing personalities of the band members start to shine through. Like any self-respecting rock band, there are love interests, feuds and provocation. And, like most albums, there are classic tracks mixed with competent fillers. ‘Some of the tracks are definitely more memorable than others,’ says Gilmore. ‘It’s fairly clear which ones would be our singles.’