creator, director & choreographer // cemre su salur
composer // selman ergüner and jacob penn
lighting designer // rose malone
performers // isa boose, yolette yellow-duke, natasha gravia-lund,
ellen edward-siess, alexandria rema, megan hackett, maxine scholwsky, teague fernandez, lizinke kruger, lucas rivera-casanova, and dion pratt
After the Turks conquered Anatolia and created the Ottoman Empire; society became heavily influenced by Islamic Culture and women vanished hiding behind the veil. Woman’s place became the home and she did not exist in daily life anymore. She has to take care of the kids, cook, clean, and satisfy the man.
Every household had a private HAREM of their own, not as big as the Sultan, but like him, they had multiple wives.
Nobody knew what was happening or how life was in the HAREM except those who were in it.
European artists like, Jules Joseph Lefebvre, Jeon Leon Gerome, and many more were captivated by the HAREM; seduced by its mystery. Their paintings were accurate aesthetically but came from a skewed perspective.
The images romanticized the HAREM; creating a fantastical world. The purpose of this piece is to portray HAREM from a different perspective; one that both aesthetically beautiful and real.
Walking through the corridors of the Topkapi Palace HAREM fires up questions like; if these walls could talk, how many infinite amounts of things would we hear about these muses and their untold stories? If these women, came all from different places of the world, how did they communicate with each other and with the community until they learned Turkish?
HAREM's a dance theatre piece, exploring the journey of women who were captured and brought from a slave ship all the way to Sultan's HAREM. The piece is completely aesthetically driven and it is non-verbal.
HAREM premiered at the California Institute of the Arts in April of 2015.
performer // director // movement artist