An Escape From Thinking... Nope
by Estelle Rosen
Gregory "Krypto" Selinger's physical feats and eclectic style have made him a staple of the breaking scene for over a decade. His explorations of the largely unexplored possibilities of bboy vocabulary continue with exponential velocity. In 2008, he was invited to Brussels by Wim Vandekybus to train and dance with Ultima Vez in research for a new creation, and lived in Los Angeles with breakdance legend Jacob ‘Kujo’ Lyons. He has performed in numerous Cirque du Soleil projects, and has shared stages with music artists such as The Roots, K-Os, and The Flaming Lips. In 2009, Gregory choreographed Still Milking the New Sacred Cow under the mentorship of Victor Quijada, Artistic Director of Rubberbandance, and presented at Place-des-Arts. Since 2009, he interpreted for Solid State Breakdance's Breakdance for Solo Cello, a unique fusion with Bach’s intimate Suites for Unaccompanied Cello, highlighting beauty and fluidity of the breakdance body. His duet ‘Vague’, co-created with Gélymar Sanchez, won the Studio 303 Flexi-Prix in 2010. His solo creation A Piece of: My Heart (Breaking), has been critically acclaimed, and has been presented in Quebec, Ontario, Germany, and Mexico. In January 2011, The Montreal Mirror selected him for their annual Noisemakers edition, recommending that Montrealers follow this emerging artist. He is the founder of Body Slam, an interdisciplinary improvisation collective which began at the Montreal Fringe Festival in 2011. Body Slam won two Fringe awards, before going on to perform in the 2011 Les Escales Improbables festival.
CHARPO: Your press release indicates Body Slam is an interdisciplinary exploration into human nature. Tall order! Tell us how you go about making this happen, and how has it changed since its beginning in 2011?
There are the more obvious connections between dance and thought. Dance gives us something to think about; to talk about. In Body Slam, we’re a collective of dancers, poets, and musicians, where the poets and musicians can help us dancers to figure out our thoughts; to help us find the words which put our dance into context and to inspire us with reason to move. But our dance can inspire thoughts, too. When I dance, I might inspire thoughts from the poets and musicians on stage with us. When I dance, I might inspire thoughts from the audience. But when I dance, what I know for sure is that I’m going to inspire myself to think differently; this is unavoidable. When you lift a partner on stage, you’re basically giving them a hug, but with an added adrenaline rush: you’re holding the person tightly, because you don’t want to drop them, and there might be the excitement from knowing that you’re doing something that looks amazing. To give another example, when I was younger, and even more shy than I am now, I would find that I would have an easier time talking to people at a party after I’d danced. Of course, part of that has to do with dancing in front of people being a sort of ice-breaker, but I found that even to go off and breakdance in a corner, it would charge me up, and I’d be much more ready for a conversation.