Icsius the Ballet / by J B Wiskey

He who searches for his heart's truth, faces a difficult journey.

 Heart Without Measure 2002

Heart Without Measure 2002

In 1984 I began drawing and then painting the story of Icsius, though at the time, there was no story, just the images I saw when I closed my eyes, which were then converted into the drawings and paintings. A process that continued over a number of years.

Some eight years after the initial drawings were made, I attended a weekend workshop run by Pomme Clayton to begin learning the great art of storytelling. By the end of the course the numerous paintings I had already made, began to pull themselves together in my mind to form the bones of the tale of Icsius, Traele and Cur-Verity. As soon as I got home I wrote down the beginning of the story and sporadically over the next 20+ years, I added more scenes and chapters, fleshing out the bones of the tale.

In May 2016 while putting on a large retrospective exhibition in London, of my head and figure paintings, including most of those describing the Icsius story, I remembered that in 2008 my friend Denise Mangiardi had composed a string quartet for the painting Heart Without Measure (above), and that we had staged the World Première in Highgate. 
The memory that the following year my friend Dane Hurst had suggested he choreograph a dance piece inspired by the same monumental work, also dropped out of my memory banks, leaving me no option...

I decided to produce a full length ballet of the story of Icsius.

Dane's enthusiasm had not dimmed, and I asked my old friend Sacha Puttnam to compose a full score.

My first task was to finish writing the story itself, which still had gaps and which I hadn't worked on for a couple of years. That process is finished and now I'm preparing to paint seven new monumental canvases that will be the backdrops for the seven scenes of the ballet, while at the same time, working towards getting the book published.

It is a long and stimulating process.
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www.danejeremyhurst.com         www.sachaputtnam.com