Gundija Zandersona

Our Yr Odyn Artist 2018 is Gundija Zandersona


Work-in-progress performance - 27 June 2018 at Volcano Theatre.

Gundija is a freelance contemporary dancer and choreographer based in Cardiff. She graduated from university three years ago and is developing her choreographic practice at the moment.

Much of her training has focused on improvisation for a performance and contact improvisation. Her choreographic practise comes from learning about movements and moving through improvisation. She looks for ways to choreograph what seems to be real and honest on stage - performative, not acted or exaggerated.

Since being in Wales she has performed at the Arrive platform, choreographed and performed in a purpose built costume in collaboration with designer Zepur Agopyan and was commissioned by the University of South Wales to choreograph two contemporary dance works. Last October she undertook a residency at National Dance Company Wales, where she specifically focused on developing a choreographic method that would allow her to generate honesty and truthfulness through a movement conversation between dancers. She is now at the point where she would like to apply the method she worked on into making a contemporary dance work for a bigger audience.

In the three month Yr Odyn period she will focus on creating a contemporary dance work based on the choreographic method she has started to explore. It will be a narrative based work with minimal set design. It will address issues that Gundija finds current amongst people in her life - like finding happiness for yourself but not being selfish, or feeling stuck and having nowhere to move forwards to, whilst constantly idealising unrealistic lifestyles to compare and measure the things you don’t have with. It would be based on a written narrative that she will work with Volcano to structure and direct. She will involve other dancers  in the process and prioritise improvising, before devising and setting the material for the final work.

Yr Odyn ('The Kiln') is a support scheme for emerging artists and new companies in Wales. It offers professional space for research and development, encouraging a process of discovery and creativity with critical feedback at its core, enabling artists to examine their own practice and realize their potential with courage, ambition and integrity. Volcano draws on its extensive experience, unique working methods and excellent resources to create a developmental opportunity that demands real engagement from its participants in return for its transformative effect on their thinking and practice. Yr Odyn provides rehearsal space, mentoring, practical support and advice and a small budget for R&D costs.

“Yr Odyn gave me the confidence, freedom and support to realize my aims and goals into becoming an independent Welsh dance artist.” Gareth Chambers

Yr Odyn is open to Wales-based artists (who have been out of full-time education for a minimum of two years) and companies who are in the early stages of their career and who would benefit from the scheme by mentoring, coaching, creative input and arts marketing support as well as free access to rehearsal, performance, exhibition, workshop, meeting and office space. It is aimed primarily at those working in performing arts, although cross-artform work is also eligible. The scheme does not currently support projects which are entirely visual-arts based.

Previous Yr Odyn Artists include:
Morgan Thomas
Pain in the Arts Theatre Company
Josh Alan Trask
Ciara O'Sullivan
James Gardiner
Gareth Chambers
Lisa Wells
Angharad Matthews

Gundija Zandersona - lift

Photo by Theresa Haworth

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