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Flashcards in Within Her Eyes Deck (13)
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James Cousins


company that performs WHE

James Cousins company


choreographic approach

uses the choreography from Cousins’ stage production There We Have Been and sets it outdoors in a bleak landscape.

For the original choreography James worked from two starting points; narrative and emotional themes and the physical idea of keeping the female dancer off the floor.

The movement was created in collaboration with the dancers through improvisation, which was all filmed and then learnt back from the video. James then pieced these segments together into a structure that reflected the narrative arc of the story.


choreographic intent

Tragic love story (open to interpretation)

Create a dance film that maintained the emotional intensity of live performance of “There We Have Been”

The pull back towards the girl’s late lover contrasted with the desire to move on

Man never initiates movement but responds to the woman who is constantly wrapping and reaching

The mood is very tender, emotional and somber.


choreographic stimulus

A love story with a twist

Love and loss

Longing and memory

Dependency and loyalty

The dancers (know that they) can never be together


aural setting

evolved alongside the choreography, created by composer Seymour Milton in collaboration with James.
The music combines electronic elements with strings and piano creating a haunting and emotive accompaniment that blends seamlessly with the choreography, flowing as one.


dance style


Contact work



2 (1 male /1 female)


performance environment

Site sensitive; dance for camera.
The film is shot and graded to reflect the dark atmosphere of the inspiration.

After the prologue the camera starts very far away from the dancers giving the feeling that they are completely isolated and in their own world; the viewer is a secret observer.

Gradually as the dancers’ relationship grows closer, the camera moves in closer but still keeps distance until the first time the dancers look at each other when it moves right in to close up on their faces.

The majority of the film is shot with the camera on a track, giving a very smooth quality.

For the penultimate section it switches to a hand held camera giving a much more raw and unstable feeling reflecting the female character’s heightened emotional state.



Everyday clothes: trousers, shirts, skirts and blouses with no specific style

Gender specific: man has trousers, long sleeved top and shoes; woman wears a thigh length skirt, undershorts, long sleeved blouse (buttoned to the neck) no shoes

Light colour/female: cream skirt, cream undershorts, cream blouse with delicate chiffon-like fabric (buttoned up)

Dark colour/male: khaki jumper and jeans, earthy, darker colours



The film is set in remote locations to give the feeling of isolation and highlight the characters separation from society.

The locations progress from very open landscapes to more intimate settings to show a passage of time and to reflect their relationship getting more intimate and restricted as it progresses.

includes: open barren grassy landscape ; forest ; a quarry ; a cliff edge



The film uses only the natural light of the environment.

There is a development from daytime to evening into night to show the passage of time of the relationship.

The darker setting towards the end of the duet also adds to the intensity and intimacy of the final section.



A prologue followed by 6 continuous sections,
defined by changing locations,
physicality and music that reflect the developing relationship.
The overall effect is one seamless journey.