Where are they now #9
On a music rooted to the Vietnamese tradition, but nurtured of various influences, here he goes. Laurence Tremblay-Vu came to dance on the wire at the 40th Festival.
He appears in the shadows. Hanged by his feet. Then, he slowly revolves around the wire, looks for the balance pole with his hand, pulls himself, his back to the audience, and sits. Lights. His eyes are blindfolded with a large black headband.
“I created this act as if it was some sort of a personal journey.
For the beginning, I got inspired by the Hanged Man Tarot card: it is an evolution, an inside meditation.
When the light is cast, the “hanged man” accepts to open his palms and to let himself go into his own reality.
When I take the band off, my state of mind is changing inside, but the 3 minutes dark have solicited an extreme awareness of my senses”.
Using his balance pole, Laurence is signifying us a “conquered territory”. He hovers on the wire in large and flexible movements, where every gesture becomes a symbol: the image of the Warrior or the one of the Fisherman are framed.
When the balance pole gives way to the hand fan, the exploration on the wire turns into a dance; lightness, letting go… : “a more feminine sequence, rounder, thinner”.
Standing on the pole, before concluding with the Lotus pose, Laurence proves, with an elegant virtuosity, that humility must prevail even when the balance seems to be mastered: failure is within a grasp.
“On the wire, we are vulnerable.
We must put our ego aside, be humble, otherwise, things could go wrong. I could lose my balance in a snap.
I am not in my little world, it is quite the opposite, I am very connected to the audience and my environment.
For me, to be a funambulist is to be a gatherer, to provoke a general moment of silence. There is a very powerful thing in all this, we are not necessarily here to show things, but to feel this rise, at several levels. I love this positive energy… the one you are aiming, meditating, by being whole and true.
I listen to my breath… It’s like a pulse of my mental state… If I feel like I’m stressing out, I go back into a deep breathing, that will bring some weight lower in my body, and ease my balance. It is a paradox: the body is straight, holding, but relaxed. We give this impression of being so light, but we have to be a bit heavy…”
We could listen to Laurence talking for hours…
“After the Festival, I worked with the Cirque Eloize, with Flip Fabrique, I performed several crossings, including one above the Rhine… And I met with the Inuits, again. The inhabitants of the Great North see strangers arriving and showing them some weird stuff… At first, it isn’t easy to raise interest, but after a few years going there, I am beginning to know them… They love laughing, they like mockery games, and they adore dressing up… Between us, it’s a match!”
“Then, I went to the Philippines, with the Association CAMELEON, founded by Laurence Ligier. It is a wonderful project, linked with the ENACR. Every 2 years, artists go teach the circus’ disciplines to young girls who had undergone sexual abuses. It is wonderful to see this trust they give to us… And then to be able to give it back to them. We were like older brothers to them. Me, being one of these persons… It brings you back to reality!”
Today Porto, tomorrow Praha and Goa, the day after tomorrow it will be a creation with two or more funambulists… And then the day after, he will be back with to the Inuits. Laurence walks, creates, shares.
Funambulist, dancer, he bonds. Whichever height his wire. He crosses all distance. From a platform to the other, from one shore to the other, from one heart to the other, he links.
One big smile before adding: “this year was a warrior-year, I worked hard. And I finish it the way I started it: with my act. The circle is unbroken!”
And concluding: “I am proud!”
Who wouldn’t be….