Re: Workshops

Mark A Bromwich (
Wed, 29 Oct 1997 20:44:58 +0100

>Date: Sun, 26 Oct 1997 23:38:53 -0800 (PST)
>From: Christopher Sumpton <>
>Subject: Re: Workshops
>re: mic-ing dancers and triggers etc...
>i'm curious about your reasons for choosing to mic, sample and
>texturize spoken word and sounds for dance. when we see, or
>construct & perform work of this nature, what is it saying about us
>as humans? that we need to find more and more and more and more?
>or that we need more texture to compete with the special effects of
>the movies and tv that is de-sensitizing the public?
>are we saying that it's just not good enough to dance - will we
>become addicted to the power of technology? are we saying that the
>human body is just not good enough - or as stellark would say that
>the human body has become obsolete?
>from Julie Wilson-Bokowiec
Dancer/choreographer/ theatre artist
Why is it necessary to mic, sample and texturize .....
it depends on the dancers / performers / individuals you are COLLABORATING
with - you don't DO THINGS to dancers - they can make choices for themselves
Part of the problem I think is that dancers are still viewed as objects by
both technologists and comp[osers - for example may I site the disgusting
treatment of the dancer - and the kind of drival she was expected to
control(?) on behalf of Wayne Seagal at this year's ICMC - sad, sad, very
very depressing to us dancers who are more than computer literate ...
who are technologists and who are completely conversant with the latest
developments in this field.

Lets get to the point - for some of us, it's not about the dance genre -
to hell with conventional boundaries and preconceptions. I speak for
myself when I say that I am interested in pushing back the boundaries of
what I as a performer are capable of achieving on stage. I want
complexity, I especially want controle over the environment - politically
of course - the dumb fairly bites back! No longer at the mercy of the theatrical
environment - and I hasen to add that the hours of development and research
into real-time sound generation, triggering devices and radio control has
paid off in our case - because we do have a reliable and durable performance
system - unlike some!

And still - I work through and with the technology physically - as a dancer
- what this does is stimulate another method of working with its own descret
set of rules - if anything my body awareness has increased - and certainly my
performance disciplin has been intensified through the use of technology. Dance
is still, and always will be an empirical (not, by any means a virtual) partner
in the relationship between dance and technology. And the theatrical environment
does retain is historic sense of magic and illusion. Call me and idealist - but
I am speaking from experience - and my audiences would agree.

Lets have some more comments from the performers - from the dancers please.