Creative fusion allows the artist to test new ideas and push one’s artistic style. Recently, Rose Wolfe, who performed last year at Fringe, created with her creative team a very simple performance video fusing dance and filmmaking. And perhaps there in lies its effectiveness, the simplicity of the piece, which saw them win first place at the filmmaking challenge, Showdown in Chinatown with their winning entry, Mess of Me, a song by Kings of Spade. Winding down from her recent filmmaking challenge in September, we threw another challenge at Rose to explain her winning formula.

Congratulations on your winning. This is an achievement that you all must be very proud of. Tell us what exactly happened when you heard that you won?
Well, I was at the Showdown in Chinatown event when they called my name and I immediately hugged my friends around me then went up to the host to make an awkward speech and a quick thank you to all that helped me with this project.

What was that key moment that gave you the inspiration?
I haven’t quite pinned that down yet, so many people have asked me this question. I guess “the vision” sort of started when my friend Nathaniel Whittaker shared some inspiring photos on Facebook and it just grew from there. I love dancing with him and wanted to do a project that incorporated dance and color and would look good on film or photographs.

The simplicity of your piece I believe elevated the art you created, and it certainly did not take away from the hypnotic music of Kings of Spade. This beautiful marriage of the two was a perfect bond. Did the music or melody or the words drive your creativity in constructing your piece?
The music didn’t inspire the piece but it definitely boosted the level of performance when we played the music while filming. It is so deep and soulful that it brought a more emotional side of me while creating our painted mess.

What other elements do you feel gave you the tools to help with your creation?
Just having the right kind of people supporting me was what I needed. I wouldn’t have had a studio or a backdrop without Spencer Agaston. It wouldn’t have been filmed and edited without Aisis Chen. I wouldn’t have had proper paint viscosity without Danielle Halford. There wouldn’t have been beautiful photos to promote this work without Tim Orden and Dan Baram. It was a big group effort to bring to create this project.

Was there a phase in the making of the video where you and your co-dancer thought about why you were covering yourselves with paint?
That question never really came to mind, but we did ask ourselves “why the hell are we covering ourselves with acrylic paint?” I had no idea what the best paint to use was, I was working with a very limited budget.

So, why do you believe you and your crew won? What is your magic winning formula?
Honestly there just weren’t that many films that turned in to compete with. Only 5 films were chosen for the competition and we were the only ones that used Kings of Spade.

Showdown in Chinatown is a wonderful vehicle for creating films. How much has working on filmmaking helped you develop as an artist?
It has definitely heightened my confidence in being able to follow through with a project from start to finish and I’ve also discovered the power of collaboration. I can’t do everything by myself and I know now that I don’t have to.

What other creative projects are you currently involved in?
Dan Baram has taken the lead as director for the next Showdown In Chinatown Championships video. I’m keeping the details of this project a secret though. The photographs he took inspired me to do more dance/paint concepts for photography.

Tim Orden, the brilliant photographer that made the colorful photos from this shoot, has been inspired to embellish my concept and create a short film. He is creating a story of Romantic Love and will have me and Nathaniel as the leads in his story.

Thank you.
O’ahu Fringe Festival wishes Rose and her creative collaborators continuous success. To view their winning entry to Showdown in Chinatown, please click on video below.