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Flying gadgets and exotic melodies: Lelavision showcases its favorite contraptions
For more than 20 years, Ela Lamblin has been making metal devices that honk, squeak, spin, rock and fly through the air in magical and unexpected ways.
Lamblin, who with choreographer Leah Mann makes up the acclaimed local performance duo Lelavision, has gathered all his creations together for a special retrospective show — “Lelavision’s Heavy Metal DëVices,” to be performed twice this weekend at Open Space for Arts & Community.
The show will star not only Lambin and Mann but also feature a group of their local friends — Steffon Moody, dancers Abby Enson and Lynelle Sjoberg, and musicians Jason Staczek, Eric Chappelle, Arlette Moody and Christopher Overstreet — in a free-wheeling and sometimes high-wire act atop Lamblin’s interactive, kinetic contraptions.
For Lambin and Mann, a married couple, the show is a dream come true.
“We’ve always wanted to set up all our toys at once,” said Mann. “Now we can dust off some of the ones that have been shouting at us from the corners of the studio for so long.”
What can audiences expect to see?
One creation, which Lamblin calls “The Pandemonium,” is a 12-foot long rocking boat with a balloon organ motor.
Another device, “The Orbacles,” consists of two steel balls that Lamblin and Mann climb into and play from the inside out. Another instrument, the “Volcano,” is a five-foot diameter, volcano-shaped cello-like instrument that spins.
The oldest device in the show is Lamblin’s “Stamephone” — a six-foot stringed harmonic instrument that he made while still in college.
Lamblin and Mann founded Lelavision in 1996. The couple has lived on the island for nine years — drawn here by their work with UMO Ensemble.
They’ve garnered international attention for their work, touring their instruments and dances to festivals, theaters, universities and conferences. Along the way, they have schlepped Lamblin’s creations to such far-flung places as Italy, Scotland, Germany and Singapore. In Canada, they have appeared in Cirque du Soleil events in Montreal and Toronto.
The performances and music created by Lelavision, said Lamblin, is “meant to produce exotic melodies (to) sooth the wildest child or the staunchest art critic.”
“Heavy Metal DëVices” will be presented at 7 p.m. Saturday and 4 p.m. Sunday at the Open Space for Arts & Community. Tickets, $12 for adults, $7 for kids/seniors, are on sale at www.brownpaper
tickets.com and the Vashon Bookshop. Day-of-show tickets are $15 and $10, cash or check only, at the door. At 6 p.m. after Sunday’s show, there will be a special organic, “green” St. Patrick’s day meal with the cast and crew. Donations of $30 will support Lelavision. To RSVP for the meal, email email@example.com by Friday.