NW Dance Project
Portland OR, USA
Ching Ching Wong
"Rustem's "Mother Tongue" seems a model of contemporary choreography -- a piece very much of its own time but also fiercely focused and sure of itself. It doesn't meander, it doesn't settle for the first idea. Like all good dances, it cuts through space with a conviction that this is the only possible way this particular piece could be."
Oregon Arts Watch
The starting point for what became 'Mother Tongue' came about during conversations on the theme of cultural identity and belonging. I drew upon personal experiences after a recent trip to Istanbul, Turkey, which is my mother land, but a land I have never lived in. Standing in the middle of the chaos of Taksim Square and taking in the smells, watching the people and listening to the sounds, I felt an overwhelming sense of calm and belonging in the realisation that this is where I have come from.