PuSh Blog

10 Years of Crossing the Line: PuSh Festival Audience Memories From Colleen Lanki

January 31, 2014

The 10th Anniversary PuSh Festival is currently in full swing as one of the most talked about events in Vancouver this winter. Over the past ten years, PuSh has cultivated a dedicated local community of attendees who wanted to share their stand out memories of PuSh Festival as audience members; and ultimately what the Festival has come to mean to them.

Colleen Lanki on Her Favourite PuSh Festival Memories:

Coleen Lanki publicity shotEven while she was a working professional artist living abroad, Colleen Lanki has continually been an enthusiastic PuSh passholder for nine out of ten years. Having experienced the joy of seeing performances from all over the world whilst living in Tokyo, Colleen values PuSh because it brings engaging international work to Vancouver.

“PuSh is great for young artists in Vancouver because it exposes them to an international style. I wish I’d had that kind of exposure when I was growing up here.”

Today, Colleen is the Artistic Director of TomoeArts, a company dedicated to the production and creation of work incorporating nihon buyoh forms and aesthetics.

When asked which PuSh Festival performances have stayed with her the most, Colleen picked three stand-out moments:

Quizoola!, 2007

Quizoola!, written by Tim Etchells, took place in the cement factory on Granville Island. The players/performers took turns choosing questions and improvising answers.

“Structured improv, theatre, performance art – What is it? I loved it.”

Still image from Quizoola, 2007

Small Metal Objects, 2008

This Australian show – performed inside Vancouver Public Library – was a live theatre performance in which the audience members were staged on bleachers, listening to the subtly microphoned actors staged within the library’s public crowd through earphones.

“It wasn’t just the story that was interesting but the way they told it. The whole experience made me happy.”

Small Metal Objects promo image

Hot Pepper, Air Conditioner, and the Farewell Speech, 2012

“It was great to see work from Japan at the Festival. It reminded me of my time there.”

Hot Pepper image

Colleen is a theatre artist based in Vancouver, Canada. She has been directing, choreographing and performing internationally for over two decades in shows of every variety. She has a BFA in Theatre Performance from Toronto’s York University and an MFA in Asian Theatre and Directing from the University of Hawaii. Colleen was based in Tokyo in from 1995 to 2001, where she studied nihon buyoh under master dancer FUJIMA Yûko (1938-2002), and in April 2001 became a natori taking the professional name Fujima Sayû. She now studies with Fujima Shôgo. While in Tokyo, She also worked as a performer, director, choreographer and acting instructor. In 1996 she founded Kee Company, a group dedicated to intercultural, collaborative performance focusing on the Pacific Rim, which produced shows and performance events in Japan, Hawaii, Australia and Canada. While in Hawaii, she directed Bloodline, a collaborative multilingual performance, and The Lone Tusker, a South-Indian one-act play. She also co-translated and directed the English language premiere of KISARAGI Koharu’s expressionistic playMORAL, which was published in the Fall 2004 issue of the Asian Theatre Journal. Colleen is a founding member of Theatre Nohgaku, an international group dedicated to the performance and teaching of noh theatre.

Follow @TomoeVortex | colleenlanki.com

Join Colleen and other enthusiastic PuSh Festival goers with the PuSh Pass next year. The multi-access PuSh Pass is the best way to experience the Festival with flexibility to book and re-book shows, as well as other member perks including complimentary access to FUSE at Vancouver Art Gallery and Late Nights at Club PuSh.