Fight Night

Tonight we had a variety of physical work on the table: fight choreography to map a suckerpunch, two fights between a grown man and a puppet, boxing choreography that condenses an entire bout into a dance of just a few (very complicated) minutes, and movement experts Jess Malone and Roxie Myhrum guiding us through it.

Preparing the boxing match scene is a particular kind of theatrical puzzle to solve. The final choreography will show Ash in the fight of her life, throwing punches, taking hits, and deploying footwork. The audience will only see Ash, but the entire bout — every punch and hook — needs to be fully mapped out with that her invisible opponent.

In the interest of tracking the dramaturgical arc of the fight, and Ash’s mental and physical journey, we’re taking a look at two real world bouts, with particular attention paid to Christina Hammer and David Haye as they track a path from bravado to defeat. (Click the Shields/Hammer video player below to enlarge — if the video player doesn’t appear for you, stream for free via Showtime here.)