There are actions on your body long after death. Many I wasn’t even aware of until after seeing “Danse Macabre”. When this first started, I thought… Uh Oh. This is going to be some artsy piece where someone “interprets” the movements of a corpse. No way. Nearly all the movements the actor/dancer portrays seem genuine and believable. I say nearly, because the rigor on the table leading to the fall is staged, but for a good reason. It leads to an incredible image of the person falling down the drain with her blood.
Here are some stills from the film.
I had never considered how a person’s feet would slide after being hanged. This is a detail that is typically lost when we think of a hanged person. Many of the movements in this piece walk the line of morbid and beautiful.
This, as I said, was the most staged position. The rigor led to the body falling off the table. Yet the scene that followed was astounding.
We go from a view of the drain to a shot of the body, curled up, falling away. Stunning.
I had never considered this rather pedestrian movement of the body. Quite literally, it is lowered into a casket. I’d never thought about how the body was placed in there.
The most beautiful, and surprising movement, came from an interior shot of the casket. As it is being moved around, the body slides. I’d never even contemplated that.
Who says self-help needs to be serious? When you’re Will Powers, you can spout affirmations and amuse at the same time. Take a gander at a few of the nuggets that will transform you into a better person.
You are an important person. a rare individual. a unique creature. there has never been anyone just like you and never will be. you have talents and abilities no one else has. in some ways you’re superior to any other living person. the power to do anything you can imagine is within you when you discover your real self by practicing a few simple laws of success.
Curious? This song (as well as the Will Powers persona) is the brainchild of New York photographer Lynn Goldsmith. In 1983 she released an album titled “Dancing for Mental Health” with the lead song being “Adventures in Success.” The song doled out psychological advice using Lynn’s electronically tweaked voice. The goal was to make her sound androgynous. Everything was set to electronic dance music.
“I used a vo-coder to be Will. The point was to make my voice sound as if I could be either male or female – where will comes from is for both sexes,” she says. “It’s the one and only comedy self help dance record made by someone who is living proof that where there is Will, there’s a way….. take from it as you Will.”
Now, ready yourself for the full experience:
When Lynn wasn’t expounding on the virtues of self-love, she was a damn good photog. She snapped shots of everyone from the Beatles to Michael Jackson.
Gene Simmons from Kiss
I will always cherish the advice of Will Powers. He/she always cheers me up when the song pops up on my iPod. Under the Will Powers persona, she could give Stuart Smalley a run for his money: