The northern Irish choreographer Oona Doherty (*1986) became one of the most interesting choreographers in Europe ever since her socially critical works “Hope Hunt” (2014) and “Hard to be Soft” (2017) hit the stage. With “Navy Blue”, her first larger choreography for ensemble, Doherty continues her exploration of social inequity, class issues and gender roles, and expands on them with respect to structural racism and white privilege. Based on the colour of maritime life, she spans a wide associative arc – from “blue collar” workers of industrial manufacturing who adopted the formerly royal hue to symbolise the male working class, which itself evokes associations with slavery and the exploitation of nature, to blue jeans which became a global fashion phenomenon, to the ocean in which countless non-white people died during the slave trade and are still dying in their attempt to escape violence and poverty through migration. She also makes reference to the importance of the colour for art and elicits the association of blue with sadness and depression. Doherty intertwines these thematic threads into a complex choreography about traumas, structural racism, labour and its corresponding uniformity. With twelve dancers at three locations, she thus presents a choreographic commentary on current, socio-political debates. Doherty is developing “Navy Blue” in collaboration with the internationally acclaimed London DJ and club music producer Jamie Smith and the sound and video artist Luca Truffarelli.
Artistic director: András Siebold
Choreographer: Oona Doherty
Composer: Jamie Smith
Artists/participants: Luca Truffarelli, Steve Guy Hellier
10 – 13 August 2022: Performances at the International Summer Festival, Kampnagel Hamburg
Kampnagel Internationale Kulturfabrik GmbH