Garden of Deadly Sound (2007 - 2009)
The beginnings of this piece are rooted in my feelings and responses to the daily onslaught of tragic and disturbing news about war and terror, and also, as the mother of a small child, my concern for how to explain these events to our children. In a surrealist play on the characters of Maria (The Sound Of Music) and Mary Poppins, Garden of Deadly Sound explores the archetypal guardian or ‘Nanny’, the embodiment of feminine principles that save the neglected children of our world from the horrors and regimes of the patriarchs. In a confined space saturated with ominous sounds and images, two characters journey through a darkly humorous series of situations, rituals and dances, that challenge their ability to live up to their reputations as the saviors of the children. Whatever happened to Maria? Whatever happened to the sweet sound of music in the hills? Whatever happened to the magic in the bag?
Garden of Deadly Sound was commissioned by the Hungarian State Theatre Of CLuj's 'INTERFERENCES' international theatre festival, and premiered in December 2007, Cluj, Romania, and presented by SUSHI Visual and Performing Arts, San Diego 2009. An IMAGOmoves production.
“Characters inspired by movies and with a musical score appropriate for the delivery of the poetic message captured by the discretely expressionistic scenes"Adrian Tion,TRIBUNA, Cluj, Romania
“The first images, here too, capture the audience through waves of nostalgia, (through concrete allusions to Mary Poppins, the wonder babysitter with umbrella and the governess with apron in the movie, The Sound of Music), only to harrow our feelings even more with images of nuns with bayonets, with cacophony of war, with red ribbons . . . “Reka Hegyi, HAMLET, Cluj, Romania
“I’d like only to emphasize that such a spectacle has to be seen, and those who haven’t should regret it. We definitely don’t meet a Yolande Snaith on a daily basis.”
Demostene Sofron, FACLIA, Ziar independent de Cluj, Romania
Garden of Forbidden Loves (2007)
Garden Of Forbidden Loves evokes a secret meeting place for a quartet of mismatched, solitary characters, each with their own stories, joys and sorrows. Inspired by the surrealist photographic montages of artist Maggie Taylor, the landscape is minimally punctuated by a few isolated, misplaced objects of distorted scale and symbolic resonance; a caged egg, a miniature ladder, a tiny house and garden on wheels, a tree –throne. This strangely poetic quartet is set to the hauntingly beautiful voice of Alfred Dellar, singing John Dowland lute songs. A language of sharp, rhythmical, asymmetrical gestures poignantly counterpoints the soft harmonies of the music, and at times gives way to passionately intermingling dances that flow and tumble through the space.
An attempt to acknowledge and put into image, action, and poetry, that pitifully tragic part of myself that identifies with the whimsical and melodramatic.It is a garden of obscure desires and denials – almost feasting on them with our movement and characters – and somehow being able to both laugh and cry at ourselves as we are carried along by Alfred Della’s bittersweet voice.
Garden Of Forbidden Loves was funded by a UC San Diego research grant, and was performed in San Diego 2006, and toured to the Hungarian State Theater Festival of Cluj, Romania 2007.
An IMAGOmoves production.
“Snaith did several solos in this piece, and it’s a revelation to see her Knife-edge shifts from measured walk to violent chopping arms, her Intensity and punch.”
Janice Steinberg, San Diego Union Tribune
“The very beautifully composed images, the perceivable drifts between earth and sky, reality and imagination, the numerous little surprises . . . the scenes beautifully provide different attractions and relationships of subordination and domination.”Reka Hegyi, HAMLET, Cluj, Romania
Ruins True (2010 -2012)
A collective creation conceived by Gabor Tompa, Yolande Snaith, Liam Clancy and Mary Reich. Inspired by Samuel Beckett’s work. Original music by Shahrokh Yadegari and scenic design by Ian Wallace work. Jess Humphrey also performed in Ruins True and contributed to the creative process during its second phase.
“Since man has been banished from paradise, “lessness” became our natural state of life. Time is ruining our faces, our skins, our bodies, our sentiments and gestures, but there is always something that cannot be taken away ....in the magic of the memory we keep levitating in the dignity of passing away, and there’s never a dull moment- we have to start again and again!” Gabor Tompa.
Ruins True was previewed at SUSHI Visual and Performing Arts, San Diego 2010, and toured to the ‘INTERFERENCES’ International Theatre Festival, Cluj, Romania, 2010, then to Budapest and the Off-Avignon festival, France, 2011. In 2012 Yolande choreographed Ruins True Refuge with performers from the Hungarian State Theatre of Cluj, Romania, for the company's repertoire.
One Hundred Feet (2011 - 2013)
One Hundred Feet was a full length, solo multimedia collaboration between performer/choreographer Yolande Snaith, video artist Natalia Valerdi, sound designer Nick Drashner and lighting designer Wen-Ling Liao.
‘50 pairs of shoes in a Snow-White space evoke the mysterious presence of 50 seminal women who left their distinctive footprints. Dancing and talking to herself, the mundane, the divine, the real, the imagined and the impossible, Snaith negotiates past, present and future existences. “I used to be Snow White,” she says. “I am incapable of conceiving infinity,” she thinks. “Forever is composed of nows,” she feels. She dwells in possibility. This solo work navigates a path through the resonances of past idols and extraordinary minds, from Joan of Arc to Gertrude Stein to Marilyn Monroe to Pina Bausch. One Hundred Feet is both wild invention and profound dedication’.
One Hundred Feet previewed as part of Archive Fever, March 2011, a festival of performance art at UAG, (UC San Diego Art Gallery), premiered at Space 4 Art, San Diego in October 2012, featured as part of the UC San Diego Department of theatre and Dance’s Dance Series, May 2013