"Joyous and masterful no matter what angle one looks at it from … a mesmerizing blend of music and motion, captured in a unique fashion." – RogerEbert.com
Often called the sport of the arts, colour guard is a uniquely American activity: a form of synchronised dance that's like a cross between cheerleading and rhythmic gymnastics, with a military history in a collegiate environment. Performed with flags and other props, and usually seen in tandem with marching bands or during halftime at football games, color guard takes on a thrilling new life in Bill and Turner Ross' Contemporary Color.
A behind-(and gloriously in front of)-the-scenes look at the 2015 stadium spectacular of the same name conceived by the legendary David Byrne, Contemporary Color positions us in media res at the event, which featured 10 of the top high-school colour guard teams from across north America performing to live, original music from big-name acts including Beastie Boy Ad-Rock with Money Mark, Nelly Furtado, St Vincent, Ira Glass and tUnE-yArDs.
With camera operators including Sean Price Williams (cinematographer on Queen of Earth, MIFF 2015), Robert Greene (director of Kate Plays Christine, MIFF 2016) and Jessica Oreck (director of The Vanquishing of the Witch Baba Yaga, MIFF 2014), the film was awarded the Best Cinematography (Documentary) prize at the Tribeca Film Festival, and it's not hard to see why. A glittering kaleidoscope of colour, movement and music that's fervently humanist at heart, this is a dance performance and concert film like no other.
"A compelling immersion into creativity … [and] a grand, jubilant celebration of humanity that transcends traditional social barriers." – Indiewire