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Eisa Jocson (PH): Macho Dancer

“Macho dancing” is a unique phenomenon in the Philippines, a dance performed by young men in nightclubs. Through its specific movements and physicality, the macho dancer simulates a strong male, but is in reality relegated to a marginal and weak position in society. In this solo, a woman performs the macho dance. By doing so, she challenges our perception of sexuality and questions gender as a tool for social mobility. The woman assimilates the role of the strong male, which appears to up her social status. In reality, she engages in a practice that makes her vulnerable and weak, and that maintains her status as an objectified woman. The performance thus generates a “gender loop” in which the performer and audience are entangled.

Eisa Jocson is a contemporary choreographer and dancer from the Philippines, trained as a visual artist, with a background in ballet. Through her work she exposes body politics in the service and entertainment industry as seen through the unique socioeconomic lens of the Philippines. She studies how the body moves and what conditions make it move – be it social mobility or movement out of Philippines through migrant work. In all her creations – from pole to macho dancing and hostess to Disney princess studies – capital is the driving force of movement pushing the indentured body into spatial geographies. Macho Dancer won the prestigious Zurcher Kantonalbank Acknowledgement Prize at the Zurich Theater Spektakel in 2013.

Norwegian premiere
Duration: 45 minutes