Pushing the bar of factual TV “Swenglish” is so different from all the Hollywood-infused work we are surrounded by.
Louise Halvardsson is a Swedish novelist and performance poet, who’d lived in Brighton for a decade and found herself questioning her own existence, desires, and purpose in life, as she approached her 30th birthday. Her way out was Swenglish, a project which saw her celebrate her 30th by living with 30 different people for 30 weeks. Fighting against a feeling that life is hollow, narrow, devoid of purpose and curious to find out how other people’s life were like – she stayed with each person for a week, living in their homes, shadowing them at work and in their everyday life.
The documentary has been selected for several film festivals around the world: FilmFest on TV at The Latest TV, Brighton UK; TMC London Film Festival UK – nominated for the Best Editor Award; Winter Word Festival Strömstad, Sweden; Barcelona Planet Film Festival, Spain and Women’s Only Entertainment Film Festival, USA.
Diaghilev’s greatest achievement was his dance company – the Ballets Russes. Created a century ago, the productions of the Ballets Russes revolutionised early 20th-century arts and continue to influence cultural activity today.
The virtuosity and charisma of Vaslav Nijinsky (1889-1950) were such that no one who saw him perform, it was claimed, ever forgot him. He transformed himself for each role he danced. Jean Cocteau was so impressed by seeing the dancer Vaslav Nijinsky perform with the Ballets Russes that he met Sergei Diaghilev, and asked to work with him. Cocteau designed posters for the Ballets Russe, and in 1917 he was one of the collaborators on the ballet Parade: Cocteau wrote the story, Erik Satie composed the music, Léonide Massine choreographed the dance and Picasso designed the set and costumes.
In 2012 novelist and performance poet Louise Halvarsson embarked on a journey through everyday life of people in England and Sweden. She stayed with thirty different people during thirty weeks for a week with each person; she actually tried to live their lives shadowing them at work as well as at play. The aim was to write a book about cultural differences but in the end it turned to be more of a personal quest, therefore the birth of “Swenglish” book and documentary.