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Robert Clark’s immersive MASS to debut at Royal Arsenal factory

Tue 20 March 2018

Inside a former paper cartridge factory in south east London, the latest commission from the Greenwich Dance and Trinity Laban Partnership will take its audience on an immersive journey exploring deep connections and fears between ourselves and others. 

On Friday 23 and Saturday 24 March at the historic Royal Arsenal, Woolwich, choreographer Robert Clark presents the premiere of MASS, with five performers (Iris Chan, Kip Johnson, Samuel Kennedy, Janina Rajakangas, and Petra Söör) and a local supporting cast.

Clark has worked with psychologists, neuroscientists, and an illusionist to develop a performance described as an experiential antidote to our pervasive fears towards difference and otherness, exploring relationships between our senses, perception, and with belief, as individuals and as a society.

MASS is a response to our current urban environment and societal trends to disengage and disconnect from the world and others around us. It is an immersive journey through a state of knowing and un-knowing, exploring ideas of connection, separation, judgement, and expectation.

Audience members choose a costume at the door, including a hood that may reduce visibility. MASS is for ages 16 and over only, and may be less suitable for those who experience claustrophobia or anyone who does not enjoy a gentle sense of uncertainty.

Set and costume design comes from KASPERSOPHIE, lighting design by Guy Hoare, dramaturgy from Lou Cope, and sound by Jules Maxwell.

The backdrop is Building 17 in the historic Royal Arsenal, a former paper cartridge factory later used for making metal cartridge cases for quick-firing guns in the early 20th century. The building will soon be transformed as part of the new Creative District in Woolwich, a major investment bringing a series of landmark buildings at the Royal Arsenal back into use.

Choreographer Robert Clark is one of two dance artists supported by the current round of Compass Commissions – the Greenwich Dance and Trinity Laban Partnership’s flagship artist development scheme, supporting emerging choreographers throughout the process of creation. For more information see the Trinity Laban website.

MASS is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England. A Compass Commission from the Greenwich Dance and Trinity Laban Partnership, co-produced by Greenwich Dance; commissioned by The Place, and supported by Dance4, DanceEast, Tavistock Institute of Human Relations, Trestle Arts Base, and via the South East Dance and Jerwood Charitable Foundation Dramaturg in Residence programme.

Book tickets on the Greenwich Dance website.


(Image credit: Camilla Greenwell)