The Sun Never Came out Today ...And Other Melancholy Statements

The Sun Never Came out Today ...And Other Melancholy Statements is a short psychological dance film that traverses the space between sadness and emotional equilibrium; melancholia. The piece speaks to a disconnect that is felt between one’s internal subjective experience and the objective physical world. Continually flipping perspectives, the film takes us into the thoughts and dreams of its characters where an uneasy pensiveness proliferates.

As we navigate this new world of lock-downs, social distancing and isolation, “The Sun Never Came out Today … And Other Melancholy Statements” becomes even more relatable than ever, offering a glimpse into one of our less-shared human experiences … an experience we often keep to ourselves.  

  • BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT
    Produced by
  • Kyla Barkin
    Director
  • Aaron Selissen
    Director
  • Juano Castillo
    Cinematography
  • Kyla Barkin
    Choreography
  • Kyla Barkin
    Key Cast
  • Lindsay Harwell
    Key Cast
  • Aaron Selissen
    Key Cast
  • Kristi Ann Schopfer
    Key Cast
  • Zac Selissen
    Music
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Music Video, Short, Other
  • Runtime:
    3 minutes 54 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 29, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    5,925 USD
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
Director Biography - Kyla Barkin, Aaron Selissen

Aaron Selissen is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT, a New York City based contemporary dance company founded in 2009 with partner Kyla Barkin. Originally from Green Bay, WI, he received his B.F.A. in Dance Performance from Butler University.

He has directed several short films, including Slice of Rain, The Sun Never Came Out Today … And Other Melancholy Statements, Seven Armed Mind, and Concrete Illusion, which premiered on Martha’s Vineyard as part of Sally Taylor’s ConSenses, to name a few.

His choreographic work has been presented live at such venues as the Inside/Out Series at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Staller Center for the Arts, Main Stage at Stony Brook University, Bryant Park, the 92 St. Y, West End Theater, Ailey Citigroup Theater, Flea Theater, and more.

Aaron has taught master classes and workshops in public schools throughout New York City, the United States, and abroad. He can be found teaching at the Limón Institute, as well as giving private lessons.

Selissen’s performance career has taken him around the world. He worked with Dance Kaleidoscope and Ballet Internationale of Indianapolis. He has performed with the Martha Graham Ensemble, Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, and Isabel Gotzkowsky and Friends, among many others. He was a member of the Limón Dance Company from 2010 to 2016 and can currently be seen performing with Janis Brenner and Dancers (since 2007) as well as Barkin/Selissen Project.

Kyla Barkin, Founding Director & Artistic Director of BARKIN/SELISSEN PROJECT, was raised in Tempe, AZ. She studied with “La Mariquilla” at the Academia de Ballet Flamenco in Granada, Spain then received her B.A. in Dance from UCLA. Ms. Barkin has toured internationally, is the recipient of multiple awards, including the Jean Irwin Award.

Barkin’s choreography has been widely shown including at The Staller Center for the Arts, Jacob’s Pillow 80th Anniversary at Inside/Out, Jazz at Lincoln Center, West End Theater, Boston’s Dance Complex, Touhill PAC (St. Louis, MO), Bryant Park, and the 92nd St Y. Her work has also been presented internationally at venues in Berlin (Germany), Edinburgh (Scotland), Yogyakarta (Indonesia), and more. Notable collaborations include dance films made with Juano Castillo, FALKOR Systems’ autonomous pet drone, Reggie Watts for Sally Taylor’s ConSenses, James Simons, Sirius String Quartet, and Nel Shelby on Differential Cohomology & its documentary, and an on-going artistic partnership with composer James Guastaferro.

Barkin has been working with Janis Brenner & Dancers since 1998 and has taught and set works, both of Brenner’s and her own, at institutions such as NCSA, The Juilliard School, The Joffrey School, Stony Brook University, the Creative Arts Studio in Brooklyn, and Tanzakademie Balance 1 in Berlin. She has danced with other major companies including Isabel Gotzkowsky and Friends, The Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, and The Doug Elkins Dance Company. She has been on faculty at USDAN Center for Performing Arts and continues to teach classes, private lessons and workshops both in the United States and internationally. Ms. Barkin is also proud to serve on the board of the Foundation for a Just Society.

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Director Statement

We dance to express that which cannot be expressed through words. As an artist working with both film and live performance, I strive to blur lines between the emotional and intellectual, dream worlds and waking states, logic and intuition. With dramatic shifts between subtle nuance and explosive athleticism, my choreography and filmmaking aims to infuse fresh perspective on subjects ranging from mathematics to the complexities of human nature.

As a working artist, I continually strive to forge new pathways through explorative, thought provoking, multi-layered work. I seek challenges to my assumptions by cultivating a diverse community of artists with whom I work, whose unique strengths and experiences bring divergent perspectives to our process. I aim to inspire audiences and meet people where they are by connecting them to and through dance. I believe it is important for artists to reach out to the youth in our communities, creating space for educational experiences that expose them to new ideas and perspectives while encouraging them to develop and trust their own voices.