THE RITA - Letestu (Disclosures 7")
It’s no secret that the classical and the neoclassical ballet has a been a primary proponent in my artistic and physical output over the last 4 years (and for probably the rest of my media arts career), and as the major projects have been developed and taken shape, I think often about the initial classical ballet performances that began to shape the various interests. The memories always circle back to the Paris Opera Ballet and danseuse étoile Agnès Letestu. The first classical DVD I bought was the Paris Opera Ballet’s production of LA BAYADERE and immediately noticed Agnès Letestu as one of the three shades, thus making my second purchase the 2005 Paris Opera Ballet production of Swan Lake which features Agnès Letestu as Odette / Odile. Amongst everything else in the performance, Letestu’s potrayal of Odile consciously cemented my interest in the ballerina as a whole; the makeup, facial features, gestures, costume, form and Agnès Letestu’s incomparable angular posture. As the magazine, DVD, VHS, and Blu-ray collection grew exponentially, I was able to see even more of Letestu’s profound abilities for pantomime and drama, most notably in the Paris Opera Ballet’s 2003 production of LA PAQUITA. Eventually, the apex representation for me as a fan of Agnès Letestu has easily been her role as the Siren / La Courtisane in Balanchine’s LE FILS PRODIGUE. Strangely enough, I first saw her in the stunning costume during one of the documentaries about her as she was fitted with the arm bands in her dressing room. Finally finding and seeing online the Paris Opera Ballet’s 2001 production of LE FILS PRODIGUE was absolutely awe inspiring and a massive cumulative experience as again, the Georges Rouault ‘designed’ costume with Letestu’s uncanny stage abilities further cemented my thought that Agnès Letestu may be the absolute stage representation of woman. In other words, divine and a living, moving goddess. Over the years THE RITA has revolved many works around European genre film and pre-code vamp / flapper actresses, and the continuing life dedicated to the classical ballet has informed fascinations with other ballerinas such as Ludmila Semenyaka, Natalia Bessmertnova, Tatiana Terekhova, Marianela Nunez, Claire Marie Osta, Natalia Osipova, Maya Plisetskaya, Svetlana Berisosova, Ariana Lallone, Olesia Novikova and Alina Cojocaru, but again, for me Agnès Letestu is always the apex representation of the female performer.
The Letestu 7” on Disclosures has been one of the most difficult releases I have had the opportunity to work on as my audio and aesthetic tribute to Agnès Letestu had to be all encompassing and representative for me. The various processed sound samples from rare imported documentaries layered with further mic’d pointe shoe sounds from Arlo Doyle, the 7” format (which is always my absolute favourite) and the imagery all had to be seamless.
The only thing I could imagine being more difficult is meeting Agnès Letestu one day and nervously expressing to her that all my primary fascinations with the aesthetic and movements of the ballet have been shaped by her.
- Sam McKinlay
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ELEMENTS OF CLASSICAL AND NEOCLASSICAL BALLET USED TO CHOREOGRAPH A DANCER'S MOVEMENTS TO JAGGED LINES OF SOUND. CREDITS - DANCER: KELLY DAVIS CHOREOGRAPHY: SAM McKINLAY ELECTRONICS: SAM McKINLAY SOURCE SOUNDS: OLIVIA BURR, KRISTIN HAYTER COSTUME AND MAKEUP DESIGN: SAM McKINLAY DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: MIKE McKINLAY REFERENCES - GESTURE AND PANTOMIME: GISELLE, ACTE I, SCENE D’AMOUR RAYMONDA, ACTE III, VARIATION DE RAYMONDA COSTUME: MARTHA GRAHAM - HERETIC CARMEN SUITE - TOBACCO GIRLS MAKEUP: CARMEN SUITE - FATE PETRUSHKA - THE BALLERINA FILMED AT STUDIO31, VANCOUVER, BC, CANADA THE RITA bakurita.blogspot.ca
HAPPENING JULY 27, 2018 AT 7:00 PM TO 10:00 PM
FRIDAY NIGHT MUSIC WITH BC HYDRA, MOURNING COUP AND THE RITA
JULY 27, 2018 AT 7:00 PM
SUSAN HILLER: ALTERED STATES
#SUSANHILLER #ALTEREDSTATES #THEPOLYGON
On Friday, July 27, join us for an evening of transforming and transporting musical energy, inspired by Susan Hiller: Altered States and programmed by Vancouver-based artist and musician Brady Cranfield. Enjoy performances featuring the bracing noise of The Rita, the dark pop of Mourning Coup, and the musical psychotropia of the BC Hydra DJ crew. A cash bar will be open throughout the evening.
Brady Cranfield is a sound and visual artist, musician, and writer. He has a MA in Communications and a MFA from SFU. His work has been exhibited and performed across Canada.
Various obsessions have guided Sam McKinlay’s abrasive sound project entitled THE RITA into different paths of rough and textural constructions of audio since 1996. From genre cinema sound sources, to mic’d cage diving with great white sharks, to mic’d women's makeup application and movement in nylon stockings; the various deconstructed elements of the live and pre-recorded sources lead to a heavily directed and immersive listening experience. Over the last four years, physical elements of the classical and neoclassical ballet have acted as a culmination of driven interests for McKinlay’s THE RITA.
Mourning Coup is a classic rock tribute band commonly mistaken for experimental pop. Spear-headed by Chandra Melting Tallow, Blackfoot visual artist and producer, mastering the art of psychic defence as song writing. In 2015 Mourning Coup their debut LP "Baby Blue" on No Sun Recordings. Rapture of Roses, a cross disciplinary project integrating performance, visuals and music, premiered at Unsettled for Vancouver Queer Arts Fest 2017.
"Live collaboration between these titans of harsh noise. Recorded February 2014 at Dead Audio studio, in Houston, Texas. Double sided offset printed DIY style pasted covers, including A4 insert, plus fliers from live events taking place surrounding these sessions. Mastered and cut at Dubplates & Mastering for maximum fidelity. White label 45 RPM 12". Absolutely brutal record, you know what to expect with this one."
Edition of 300.
Now available direct from LAKE SHARK HN
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for availability and postage rates
From Sacred Bones:
***Limited Edition Version: Edition of 400 hand-numbered copies, comes with alternate latex-printed wrap around sleeve, cassette featuring exclusive remix by noise legends The Rita, wax sealed, pressed on gray-and-black starburst vinyl, and available by mail-order only. ONE PER PERSON LIMIT.***