Ryan McNamara’s work, Meem, won the Malcolm McLaren award at last year’s Performa in New York. For his first performance in Asia, commissioned by Yana and Stephen Peel as part of the Chai Wan Nites warehouse party during Art Basel in Hong Kong on 16 May, he shocked and awed with 20 dancers who invaded the space on a dump truck, threw down pedestals amidst the crowd, and proceeded to race through 20 stations dictated by an ominous voice and projected instructions: 11. BEYONCE WHILE RIHANNA, RIHANNA WHILE BEYONCE 16. PAS DE BOUREE WALL [sic]. McNamara has provided Ocula with the 20 instructions he gave to his dancers to create the work Score.
1. define your space
Drop down quickly onto the pedestal and crawl off. The idea is to corral the audience,
either bring them in closer if they are too far away or push them back if they are too
close. This will be done using all parts of your body but your hands. This is not set, but
some of the suggested moves are (video to come):
leg hook, chest hop, ride the leg, head nuzzle, arm hook, pull in/push out, hip swivel, chin
hook, butt bump, downward dog sweep
2. mark your sweats
The pockets of your sweatsuits will be filled with some sort of paint (more info to
follow). You will slowly remove your hands from your hoodie pockets and drag them up
your body. You will feel your body with your hands, spreading the paint.
3. Remove your sweats and smile for the camera
Start unzipping your hoodie. Every ten seconds, the soundtrack will say “Smile for the
camera,” followed by a beat. On that beat you make a pose that is half vogue, half school
portrait. Then you continue to take off your sweats. The sequence of events is: unzip your
hoodie halfway. Pose. Remove hoodie and have it dangling from one arm. Pose. Pull
down sweatpants halfway down thigh. Pose with a Plie. Pull down sweatpants to ankle.
Pose with a kick that will be impeded by your sweats. Take off your sweatpants until they
are only on one foot. Kick and pose.
4. perform choreography Ryan dreamt on March 28, 2014
5. text and judge
Scan audience. Single someone out and pull out cell phone slowly while staring at her. Text about her.
6. 50 second grand rond de jambe glow
Turn on your battery pack (This will light up your right leg). Stand on your left leg and
slowly perform a continuous rond de jambe for 50 seconds. This does not have to be a
classic rond de jambe. It can be more about exploring the articulation with your leg. The
base of it is a rond de jambe and you do not put your leg down until the buzzer sounds.
Get under the pedestal.
8. sullen das kapital confetti throw
Reach inside your unitard and grab the bag filled with confetti made from Marx’s Das Kapital hidden inside. Throw it. Repeat two more times.
9. force an uncooperative body to dance
10. oolong gatorade fountain
Lift your pedestal and remove the Gatorade bottle filled with oolong tea bags. Drink
some and then pose and spit it out like a fountain.
11. beyonce while rihanna, rihanna while beyonce
12. screaming an audience member’s name while signing your name on the air with various body parts
Ask an audience member their name. Scream it while you pretend you have a pencil
attached to different body parts. a pencil attached to your hip, to your side, shoulder,
face and sign your name in the air.
13. arabesque collapse
Take ten seconds to get into an arabesque. Collapse to the ground. Get right back up and
grow into an arabesque. Collapse. Do this a total of 5 times.
14. fist your mouth with alcohol lubricated hand
Grab a drink from someone in the audience. Stand on the platform. Slowly bring your
other hand to your mouth and start sliding it in. Try to get your entire hand in your mouth
while pouring the drink on your hand.
15. apology aerobics
In the past few days I have begun to atone for my private failings with my wife, my
family, and my constituents. The remorse I feel will always be with me.
It was wrong. It was foolish. It was inexcusable.
To be clear, the picture was of me, and I sent it.
Given the circumstances surrounding the affair and its impact upon my family and my
ability to govern, I’ve decided the right course of action is to resign.
16. pas de bouree wall
In the ten second interval, come to the middle of the room and stand next to the other
dancers. Join hands and pas de bouree toward the audience, forcing them to move back.
17. pas de bouree wrangle
In the ten second interval, go through the audience to the other side. Join hands with your
partner and do a pas de bouree duet that wrangles people back to the middle of the room.
18. shining moment
Do whatever makes you look the best.
19. prepare for the storm
Go up to audience members and mouth words to them. Take their drinks from them.
Create a sense of panic.
20. conjure the storm
Do conjuring dance. Wind machines will blow as you perform.
After the storm, walk to the truck and leave the space