On dance-techTVLIVE: Performance Research Seminars winter-spring 2011 LIVE from Brunel University, London

Centre for Contemporary and Digital Performance
School of Arts, Brunel University

In collaboration with dance-techTV

Lectures will be streamed LIVE with remote audience  interaction

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Pictures from mawson-raffalt + faulder-mawson




Wednesday February 16th –  Phill Niblock, in concert and in conversation

4pm Gaskell Building / Artaud Performance Centre 


Phill Niblock is a New York-based minimalist composer and multi-media musician and director of Experimental Intermedia, a foundation born in the flames of 1968's barricade-hopping. He has been a maverick presence on the fringes of the avant garde ever since. In the history books Niblock is the forgotten Minimalist.  His influence has had more impact on younger composers such as Susan Stenger, Lois V Vierk, David First, and Glenn Branca. He's even worked with Sonic Youth's Thurston Moore and Lee Renaldo on "Guitar two, for four" which is actually for five guitarists. This is Minimalism in the classic sense of the word... Niblock constructs big 24-track digitally-processed monolithic microtonal drones. The result is sound without melody or rhythm. Movement is slow, geologically slow. Changes are almost imperceptible, and his music has a tendency of creeping up on you. The vocal pieces are like some of Ligeti's choral works, but a little more phased. And this isn't choral work. "A Y U (as yet untitled)" is sampled from just one voice, the baritone Thomas Buckner. The results are pitch shifted and processed intense drones, one live and one studio edited. Unlike Ligeti, this isn't just for voice or hurdy gurdy. Like Stockhausen's electronic pieces, Musique Concrete, or even Fripp and Eno's No Pussyfooting, the role of the producer/composer in "Hurdy Hurry" and "A Y U" is just as important as the role of the performer. He says: "What I am doing with my music is to produce something without rhythm or melody, by using many microtones that cause movements very, very slowly." Niblock was making films (such a "Movement of People Working" which will be screened here) which are painstaking studies of manual labour, giving a poetic dignity to sheer gruelling slog of fishermen at work, rice-planters, log-splitters, water-hole dredgers and other back-breaking toilers. Since 1968 Niblock has also put on over 1000 concerts in his loft space, including Ryoji Ikeda, Zbigniew Karkowski, Jim O'Rourke.


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[ "Beyond Presence" by Medhit Farajpour, originally schedule to perform his solo performance "Confession" and discuss his work, was unable to enter the UK and his visit unfortunately had to be cancelled. Mehdi Farajpour (1980 - Iran) is a conceptual performing artist; his main activities are divided in two parts: Creation and Teaching. Besides his creations for the stage, he is also firmly focused on teaching his creative way of dancing: “Meditative dance”. His artistic career covers different fields such as Literature, Poetry, Dance, Butoh, Photography, Video, Music and Theatre. In 2002, he launched Oriantheatre Company in Tehran and he promoted the company on international stages. www.mehdifarajpour.com & www.oriantheatre.com ]

Wednesday March 2nd   Aviva Rahmani
“Trigger Point Theory as Aesthetic Activism”
4pm Gaskell Building Drama Studio

Trigger Point Theory as Aesthetic Activism is a methodology conceived by ecological artist Aviva Rahmani, to use body knowledge to see the global in the local. Based in current environmental restoration theory and practical experience, it combines science, performative means and discussion to identify where and how people can intervene in sites of serious environmental degradation. 

Aviva Rahmani, ecological artist and Affiliate, Institute for Arctic and Alpine Research (INSTAAR), University of Colorado at Boulder, received an Arts and Healing Network 2009 award for her work on water. In 2009, she began performing workshops about her theoretical approach to environmental restoration, "Trigger Point Theory as Aesthetic Activism," beginning at the Survival Academy, Copenhagen, Denmark. Her new media project on global warming, Gulf to Gulf (2009- present), fiscally sponsored by the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), tracks the global impact of extractive industries. Previous ecological art projects have resulted in the restoration of a former dump site to a flourishing wetland system (Ghost Nets), linking 35 hectares of migratory bird fly zone habitat and helped catalyze a USDA expenditure of $500,000 to restore an additional 13 hectares of critical wetlands habitat (Blue Rocks) in the Gulf of Maine. Internationally known, exhibited and published for her installations, remediation earthworks and environmental art activism, she has over 40 years collaborative experience with scientists. Rahmani received her Masters from the California Institute of the Arts working with Allan Kaprow and is a PhD candidate at the University of Plymouth, UK.

Wednesday March 16th   Ursula Mawson-Raffalt & Anthony J. Faulder-Mawson
“90’ Silence + Activity “
4pm Artaud Performance Centre 

A performative and exhibitive lecture demonstration that investigates the border territory between the disciplines and experiments with blurring the boundaries between performance, exhibition and lecture. 

Ursula Mawson-Raffalt and Anthony J. Faulder-Mawson  both direct the
International Platform for Innovation in the Arts. Known particularly for the avant-garde nature of their works, their artistic integrity and unique artistic language, Ursula Mawson-Raffalt and Anthony J. Faulder-Mawson invent means to layer their independent works to form a third entity which is somehow greater than the sum of its parts. Their artistic vision is derived from the view that  “ Art is an OPEN SYSTEM that sustains the flow of oxygen and heals and transforms and relates specifically to time, the embodiment of silence and memory and the articulation of contemplative space through movement, text, voice, spatial drawings, light, painting, video, photography, media and sound.

In 1993, when they founded the inter-& cross disciplinary association known under the logo ) + ( = a0,  they began a serious, passionate & challenging lifelong collaboration which is rooted in the dialogue about their integrative methods of construction and presentation. Based on their significant groundbreaking methods, both artists have built up, over twenty years, a highly rigorous, complex and responsive working practice in the fields of performing and visual arts.  Working as the innovators, creators, artistic directors and producers, they have since created & produced a large body of work - over thirty international projects to date, - conceived for the theatre, exhibition space and for site specific locations which have been shown in Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Israel, the UK and Romania.http://mrplusfm.blogspot.com www.mrplusfm.net

Wednesday March 30th  Nick Hunt
“Designer > Performer Repositioning the role of the theatre lighting artist”
4pm Gaskell Drama Studio

The role of the person with creative responsibility for lighting in theatre performance has traditionally been conceptualised as ‘designer’ – someone who makes a prior imaginary act before the moment of performance, which is then replayed in performance through an essentially procedural, non-creative, process. I want to propose a partial reinvention of theatre lighting as an arts practice, emphasising the live operation or ‘performance’ of lighting, rather than its design prior to the performance event, and conflating the existing roles of the lighting designer and the lighting operator into the lighting artist. In this seminar, I trace the historical origins of the professional role of the lighting designer and how it is structured, and suggest some strategies for making the shift from designer to performer. As well as describing changes to rehearsal room practices to include lighting, I demonstrate a custom lighting control interface conceptually structured in terms of lighting affects and temporal dynamics,that provides a playable, expressive instrument for the performance of theatre lighting.

Nick graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering before deciding that theatre was more interesting than thermodynamics. After ten years as a professional lighting technician and designer, he started teaching at Rose Bruford College, where – some thirteen years later – he is currently Head of the School of Design, Management and Technical Arts. Nick’s principal research interest at present is the performative potential of light and the lighting artist as performer. Nick’s other research interests include digital scenography and digital performance, the history of theatre lighting, and the roles and status of the various personnel involved in performance-making.

Coordinated by Gretchen Schiller and Johannes Birringer. How to find us: http://www.brunel.ac.uk/about/campus/directions

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The Centre broadcasts selected Performance Research Seminars live from the Brunel Drama Studio - making them available to anyone in the world interested in the subject. Johannes Birringer and Marlon Barrios Solano are co-producing the talks and discussions as live webcasts webcast live on dance tech net TV . The partnership between the Centre and dance-techTV, is an experiment in collaborative video broadcasting (the channel is dedicated to interdisciplinary explorations of the performance of movement. The channel allows worldwide 24/7 linear broadcasting of selected programs, LIVE streaming and Video On-demand).

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