Nuova Scena Antica                                                                                                                                                           Women in Art Festival
Magazine Women in                                        CANADA

German photographer radicated in Toronto who specializes in dance/theatre photography. She's also an artist in her own right.

cylla TORONTO - What photographers inform your style?
The very first photographer who drew my attention was Barbara Morgan, who worked for Martha Graham's company.
An amazing professional, who later on photographed also art and architecture, she was one of the major dance photographers.
What particularly inspired me about her work was her ability to capture the letting-go of the mind so that the body may speak: she captured the joy of dancing.
The second influence was Annie Liebovitz because she put a lot of ideas and creativity into photography.
She was also theatrical and created settings. For my style and the lighting, which are very important, the strong black-and-white photographers, like Steichen and Steiglitz were decisive.

Tell us about the specifics of photographing entertainment.
The job's aim is to awaken curiosity and to make people pay attention to a company's work. We're like the guy who arrives before the circus announcing the attractions about to come.
I think of this image because we're always just ahead of the opening night. There are many ways to photograph theatre, but nowadays, because of budgetary reasons, we photograph the dress rehearsal, the only "show" in which we can freely move, or the preview.
My main task is to have pictures ready for the press release. Photographs for posters, however, are taken at a studio.
You talk to the choreographers, and what we basically we do is a representation of their ideas.

What are the main obstacles of this kind of work?
There are always obstacles. Everything is time-conditioned; everything has to be quickly done.
Usually we have between one hour and a half or two hours. So there's just time for one take. The main obstacle is that I usually don't know what I'm photographing.
So I go into the dress rehearsal and I have to get these incredible pictures which speak about the piece; and they have to be exciting enough that people will look at them.

You may have a virtual sneak preview of Cylla work @

Sergio Nunes Melo
da I Quaderni di Nuova Scena Antica

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