4 short descriptions of How to keep our friends from drowning by Eirini Kartsaki & Joe Kelleher

Something is broken, the simultaneity is infuriating, each motion, each stutter intelligence and swindle — a martini or just water and olives. A hiccough might contain at one and the same time pathos, humour, mundanity and drama — the everyday trauma of human capacity — the beauty in a smudge and the glamour of a neck brace. This is how we got here and always with the tantalising question before us: how did they injure themselves in this way?

They are not broken, they are inflicted on us, they will not stop until they get it right: the explanation of how they came through the infuriating noise to settle down before us.

How to keep our friends from drowning takes a furious run at accelerating speeds, whiplash proof via prophylactic neck braces, wheels spin in position and we know there will be injury, the only question is how much saliva will be spent in the service of it.

It is desperate, it is vociferous, it is packed with an urgency I cannot explicate, their safety measures have made me suspicious, it is an extraordinary rendition, I am all ears.

(because they asked for it)


How to keep our friends from drowning by Eirini Kartsaki & Joe Kelleher was part of TwoFold, a festival of duet work in March & May 2017 at Chisenhale Dance Space, London. TwoFold included all the duet projects made by Karen (with others) since 2009, alongside duet collaborations by other artists, a symposium on issues around working in pairs, and workshops.

Photo: Christa Holka.