Iris Warriors is many things – a film, a ballet, a book, but above and beyond everything else, it is a creation myth about the birth of colour. The story of Darkness and Light, and of how their union and their conflict produces the Iris Warriors, the seven colors of the rainbow that brighten and illuminate our world, it is a timeless story, an ancient myth for a modern age.
A global, high-end production being in filmed in Cape Town, Iris Warriors features a diverse and talented cast and crew from all parts of the Rainbow Nation.
There are two integral parts to Iris Warriors. First and foremost there is the ballet, the myth of the Iris Warriors, born from the union and conflict of Darkness and Light, bringing light and life to our world. But framing this, making it more accessible and opening the story up to a wider audience, is another fable, set in an almost mythical place – a small orphanage during World War II.
As the children huddle in the cellar, bombs crashing down above them, their teacher, Miss Shaw, tells them the story of the Iris Warriors. As they react to the unfolding tale – laughing, crying, hoping, fearing – their reactions draw in the audience, helping us to become involved in both stories, breathlessly awaiting the explosive finale.
Thus there are two sets of characters, two stories. Individually, they have their merits. Together, they are stronger, more powerful, more engaging. Together they are the Iris Warriors.
Iris Warriors is characterised by two distinctive features. Firstly, there is nothing to compare it to – it is that rare thing, a unique project. Secondly, whenever we talk to industry professionals about it, they are highly enthused by it, want to become involved.
The award winning composer, Matthew Olyver, has written the score, which is being produced by Jake Bright. The soundtrack is being recorded with the
Slovak National Symphony Orchestra in Bratislava.
Other talent includes:
Animation director: Award winning Rob Rae (Batman Begins; James Bond) is developing the animated elements;
Co-producer: Julie Baines is a Double Bafta winning producer.
Dance Director: Delia Sainsbury is an acclaimed dancer and choreographer who has acted and danced professionally in nine London West End productions. She has also presented numerous TV shows in South Africa.
Website Development: Award winning New York content creators Click3X are developing the website.
Costume designers: Acclaimed Cape Town designers Malaka and Lloyd.
Director of photography: Grant Appleton (The Giver; Long Walk to Freedom; Chronicle; Homeland)
An original ballet with an original score is a rarity in this day and age. Every year, the big companies endlessly recycle the same “Classics” (Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker at Christmas), afraid to try something new in case it doesn’t find an audience.
Iris Warriors fills that void – because it will debut as a film first and foremost, it will already be familiar to many people when it becomes a live show. And because it was developed in and for the social media age, we will already have connected with the children and families who are an essential part of the audience for an exciting new dance performance.
We invite you to take this journey with us, join the Iris Warriors as they battle Darkness and usher in the Birth of Colour.