Director: Jonas Hegi
United Kingdom, 2019, 9 min
Shooting Format:Arri Alexa Mini
Crew:Writers: Jonas Hegi, Benjamin Milan. Producer: Helen Dulay, Production: RadicalMedia, Post-Production: Builders Club, Music: Gaika, Styling: Coline Bach, Production Design: Ciaran Linden Beale, Director of Photography: Tom Elliott, Sound Design: Chris Banks, Executive Producer: Ben Schneider, Commissioner: Shelley Bones for Nowness
A four-part voguing odyssey withthe father of the House of Milan, Benjamin Milan featuring original music by Gaika
Swedish choreographer and movement director Benjamin Milan leads this visual ode on the transformative power of dance. "This film is about my journey in the ballroom scene," says Milan. "This is about how voguing helped me accept myself and find a community that welcomed and understood me for who I am."
As father of the House of Mila in the UK, the dancer highlights the importance for LGBTQ+ groups, people of color and other marginalized communities to not just find a scene, but a home. Featuring rapturous music from long-term Nowness contributor Gaika, New Ways is Milan's personal odyssey, which he choreographed and conceived with director Jonas Hegi from directing duo Jonas & Julien.
"For me, it was important to create an artistic and emotional portrait that talks about ballroom on a personal level while being respectful to its community," says director Hegi. "The four chapters are poetic and surreal interpretations of different stages of Benjamin's life."
The London-based dancer has collaborated with Madonna, FKA twigs, Kylie Minogue, Mykki Blanco, Zara Larsson, Taylor Swift, Teyana Taylor, among others—making a name for himself by seamlessly integrating voracious voguing styles with boundary-pushing ideas and concepts.
"I wanted to present voguing in a different context alongside Jonas, Gaika and my ballroom family," says Milan, "and push where you can take this art form, while still staying true to the essence of ballroom."
About the director
Jonas Hegi is a Swiss-German filmmaker and photographer based in London, UK. He's exploring experimental ways of documenting ideas and telling stories through film and stills. The film 'New Ways' is a great example of how he likes combining reality with the imagination of the mind. His first short film 'Robert Rushkin - The Artist' won a 'Young Director's Award' in Cannes. Together with his long time collaborator Julien Simshauser he founded the multidisciplinary creative studio Builders Club.