RE: undemanding fish2

Richard Povall (
Thu, 2 Sep 1999 17:55:50 -0600

Hi Johannes...

><<there is a qualitative difference between a piece made with interactive
><technologies where there is a real, hopefully deep, link between
>performer and
><the environment, and an exquisitely controlled choreography/video/lighting
>Why should these two kinds of work be *fundamentally different* - if both
>performances are in fact composed to be interactive? I don't disagree with
>Richard that the interactive programming and scenario perhaps pursues a
>aesthetic goal and explores a specific relationship (in space) between
>and music, moving images, light, which will also require a specific kind of
>sensitivity and rehearsal on part of the performers. The performer moves the
>music, let's say, rather then moves to the music. The difference is subtle, I
>think, not fundamental.

Thanks, as ever, for your clear thinking on these tricky issues. What I
believe to be the fundamental difference between an interactive, or to use
a different phrase, an intelligent environment and a highly choreographed
and rehearsed performance with all the elements tightly in sync, is that
the environment is just that - and environment that exists in the moment
and for the moment. If the connection is THERE, if it's really working and
there is a real sense in which the performer(s) is living and breathing and
moving within it, then there is a sense in which that performer, that body,
has the supreme control over that environment. A choreographed moment can
be subverted, subtly changed, or completely transgressed - in the moment -
because the environment is completely tied to the moving/performing body.
I don't think that's true in any other form of performance - which is what,
for me, makes it fundamentally different.

It's also what makes it so glorious to work with - when/if it finally all


R i c h a r d P o v a l l
Senior Fellow, RESCEN (Centre for Research into Creation in the Performing
Arts), Middlesex University (in assoc. with the South Bank, London)
15 Higher Dean, Dean Prior, Buckfastleigh, Devon TQ11 0LY UK
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