Bunhead’s Back (1998)


A comic and poignant portrait of a ballerina whose head is screwed on backwards. The audience follows the character, who wears a mask on the back of her head, as she struggles through a series of Degas-inspired poses, a ballet barre, an audition, her debut performance, and post-performance let-down. The music is a humorous montage of tunes by Ponchielli, Chopin, Strauss, and Tchaikovsky. (12 minutes)


CHOREOGRAPHY: Jody Sperling / DANCER: Melissa Rodnon
MUSIC: Various Composers / PIANO: Jeffrey Middleton
MASK: Josh Blaker

“witty, entertaining and thought-provoking . . . an uncomfortably poignant undertow” 
–Michael Crabb, Canada’s National Post

“hilarious” –Paula Citron, Globe and Mail

“Degas’s statue of a little dancer comes to horrid life in ‘Bunhead’s Back!;’ Melissa Rodnon wears a worried mask (by Joshua Blaker) on the back of her head and a wig over her face. Walking in splayed fourth position, she’s a travesty of the discipline-stiffened student (she has a magnificent “back bend” but trouble leaning forward).” 
–Deborah Jowitt, The Village Voice