Friday night I went along to see this performance at Provocation. Firstly let me say, I’m a fan of Satomi and Lukas Zpira, and we do not see them here in Australia nearly enough! To say that I was awestruck would be an understatement!
Literally translated to ‘Dance Neural’ this was a hooked suspension with a difference. The combination of body, mind, steel, and wires all blended with body-hacktivist, Lukas Zpira, to create an amazing show of ‘how a suspension feels’. With his partner Satomi – aka Tokyo Love Doll – by his side, they designed this performance “because so many people ask what if feels like. It is so hard to describe the feelings, so they decided to show, not tell.” I am fortunate to have a moment or two with Satomi to interview her, about this.
The performance begins, in that moment that the heat beat comes through the speakers she holds a stethoscope to her breast, and his breath rushes out in a tidal wave behind the mask, filling your eardrums with the same rush of blood that is going through his ears. It is the combination of those two elements that puts you inside the body. Her heart starts to race, as the first Gilson hook is placed next to the skin, the rush that she gets from throwing that hook through the skin. The ensuing thrum overrides the rush of breath, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale and …. push.
“Pushing through the band of constant scar tissue across his upper back, is tough” Satomi says. “Sometimes it’s a little more difficult, even though we try to alternate the sites”. Last night’s performance was one of those nights where the energies can define the performance. As she threw the second hook there was a moment of being stuck.
“The scar tissue too great and required an extra pair of hands.” The sound of his breathing controlled, yet a staccato at times, her heart, overridden by the sound of his breath now.
It’s in that moment that the heat beat comes through the speakers that the breath rushes out in a tidal wave almost filling your eardrums with the same rush of blood that is going through his ears. Her heart beat starts to race, as the hook is placed next to the skin, the rush that she gets from throwing that hook through the skin. The ensuing thrum overrides the rush of breath, inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale and …. push.Finally the second hook is thrown. Secured, to the overhead rings he rigs the head gear a contraption that is wired to the computer to read his brain waves. He begins the suspension by settling his body against the weight of the hooks and ‘throwing out the wings’, activated by the flashing of his arms and his thoughts.
As the wings come to fruition, the neurons are firing full speed. He is raised up. The images of him in full flight wavering on the white screen behind him; each slight movement makes the ritual of this flight breathtaking.
“Each suspension is different” she says, “because the energy in the room is different. A hush is required for him to focus all his energy on projecting the thoughts. The chatter amongst the crowd was a little higher and that combined with the second hook, it was not so easy for him to concentrate.”
I told her it was still an amazing feat combining the best of S&M and technology and that was what came across. For someone like me, who ‘knows what it feels like to have that hook, and feel that pull of cold metal in skin, it was a visual that could explain better than I ever could in words, what it ‘felt like’ and for someone who is interested in the inner workings of the mind as the body goes through a transformative ritual like a suspension …watching this was indeed the ultimate porn!
With the combination of understanding a deeper connection between our inner and outer worlds, this performance was breathtaking. Thank you Mistress Mallice and the Provocation Crew for bringing this amazing couple back to our shores.