Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Final Project : Immersive Telepresence in Theatre

Final Reflections & Projections.

Alice in Wonderland- Lewis Carroll.

So this is my final post and reflective blog on my experience

The above video is of Natasha Tsakos  who is a  a pioneer in theatre performance integrating technology with live performance. She speaks passionately about her field and the possibilites for human experience through theatre. When I watched this video is was a moment of YES!  She finds it difficult to explain what she does, but when she performs people understand. Her future philosophies on what the human experience can be in the 21st century is of a similar thought. It is evolutiontionary and a a 21st centruy technium is happening.

It is difficult to explain and its only when you show someone a video or picture do they start to see some of the world that I have been living in.

This project is more than just a group of people using a big skype screen or a portal to another world.

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It’s immersive in every essence. The reality that you knew, changes the moment you immerse yourself within the theatre and the screen. The inward, sensory, and psychophysical journey that I have been on I can’t describe in words.

Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Final Project : Immersive Telepresence in Theatre

Cirkus School & Singing

 CIRKUS SCHOOL-

During the telepresence week, we would spend each morning doing a warm up session, focusing on mind body and voice. When we got to Tampere, the tempo change, what had been limited to some extent was togetherness in a tangible form. They had shared a digital immersive space, with a window into each other worlds. however a tangible, connectedness and physical space had not been shared. And Cirkus school is where the process was going to begin.

Ive realised on this whole experience that actors like to get up close and personal. This is something that I have always struggled with, I like my own space and too me if was something that I hadn’t part in. I had always been on the periphery, and circus school was the same. It would take till the end of the week in a body movement class for that to be broken.

The method I approached was more ethnographic. Firstly because I am in no way in any physical form to be carrying a student on my back, secondly I wanted to observe how both sets of students formed their : ‘tribe’ for want of better word.

Through the use of the acrobatic classes, taught by Yolie the circus performer, the students began to develop this trust. And secondly through the use of voice in Soilas’ session.

Relating this to the research in the  Sisters of Sound Part 1 & Sisters of sound Part 2 , specifically the neuroscience and what happens to the brain. Humans within their communities would often come together to sing. It was a form of identity and Soila brought this out in them, by instructing them to find there inner vikings.

The Finnish students and Coventry students where now forming their community in a different set, they were syncing up creatively and collaborating in a way that was so human, the energy in the room was overwhelming and powerful.

The neuroscience of singing shows that when we sing our neurotransmitters connect in new and different ways. It fires up the right temporal lobe of our brain, releasing endorphins that make us smarter, healthier, happier and more creative. When we sing with other people this effect is amplified- Prof. S Wilson

 

Even they way in which I have filmed it, has been a challenge. I can at the time, that I was fairly blown away with what I was experiencing. I wanted to capture everything and I didn’t know what to focus on. Jon my colleague who you can see recording the sound in the background, is grinning and smiling the whole way through. He was also experiencing the same energy and it did just want to make you smile. As it really was a coming together moment, that was so pure and human in its energy no one would have helped but smiled and laughed…. even if they felt uncomfortable by what they were experiencing.

 

 

 

 

 

Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Final Project : Immersive Telepresence in Theatre

Embodiment, Movement & Mindfulness Part 1

“For real human beings, the only realism is an embodied realism.”
― George Lakoff

Embodiment? That word….. a word that is flown around, especially where I work… If I am completely honest, until this project i really just didn’t get it. I had become disconnected with myself. However I was never someone who just threw the idea off… I wanted to understand what it meant, and really what it felt like.. I had lost the meaning of the word.

In a concrete representation of this word, some may say that life and its concept is represented by a circle. That is physical, that can be drawn shown and seen… this is what comes up when you google it off dictionary.com but then there is the other embodiment.

That other embodiment …..

What is ’embodiment’ when we consider it within an abstract context?

How does it feed the soul? That human experience that feeds some state of your own consciousness? Surely the incarnation of an experience will somehow attribute, to the embodiment of the human experience and surely would make us more human and for a happier and healthier society?

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In order to to be fully embodied for an actor, there has to be a level of mindfulness in performance.  And in order for that actor to be embodied, the process an actor would go through is vast, and then they would approach a particular or series of method.  It may be done in through varying types of practice such as Meditation, Yoga and Martial Arts.

“Mindfulness is the aware, balanced acceptance of the present experience. It isn’t more complicated than that. It is opening to or receiving the present moment, pleasant or unpleasant, just as it is, without either clinging to it or rejecting it.” ~Sylvia Boorstein

Many of the methods and process that Tiina & Mikko are psychophysical in practices and body within theatre. Cis.Rit.Edu , 2017, describe psychophysical as the scientific study of the stimuli (which is a physical term) and the perceptions and sensations that are evoked by this stimuli.

Dr Mikko is a practitioner of Asahi Health  which is a combination of the basis of  Eastern health practices such as Tai-Chi, but movements are based on Western medicine and physical education. One of the basic goals was to enhance peoples mobility & health. The programme was developed by a group of professional in fitness and martial arts, their names respectively are; Ilpo Jalamo, Timo Klemola, Keijo Mikkonen and Yrjö Mähönen . The approaches developed were to enhance and promote positive effects, on overall well being for those who practice it.

Categories Final Project : Immersive Telepresence in Theatre

Sisters of Sound – Sam ‘Frankie’ Fox Part 2

The Second Sister of sound was a lady called Sam ‘Frankie’ Fox, who is a performance artist and is part of the KILN Theatre Company, Birmingham.

Source: Kilnsemble.org Artist: Sam ‘Frankie” Fox

The ensemble  is collaboration between a wide range of artists, that through a ‘collision of art forms they create original material that is lit with imagination , playful and focus is on the audience experience.  I had only ever heard of the KILN theatre, but had never seen one of their performance.

Tom on the other hand, has known Sam for a while amongst the Theatre scene. That morning in the theatre as we both pulled in at 7:30 am, it was a time to prepare for what day had planned. This was my brief of what and who to expect…. and by the end of what he had shown me on Youtube, I could see why Tom had asked Sam to come and teach, especially after working with Soila the previous morning.
What Sam was bringing to the table, complemented, added another layer and by the end of the session I could see the linking of human experience, embodiment & performance.

 

 

 

 

Sams describes her performances with KILN productions, as hitting the audiences in the  ‘heart, head and gutt.  The performances seem immersive for the audience members and specifically ‘The Furies’ production.Audience members enter more of a gig than a theatre.  It is playing with performance in a different way, to remove the audience member out of their comfort zone and displace them sensory, so that envokes something else within the self.

Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Final Project : Immersive Telepresence in Theatre

Stepping into the rabbit hole of Immersive Telepresence in Theatre.

 “In jest, there is truth.”
William Shakespeare, King Lear

You remember when Dorothy went to the ‘Land of OZ’, or when Alice fell down that rabbit hole?……

Yeah. Well that has just happened to me.

Lears Lapse 2 from Beck Stewart on Vimeo.

I have been exploring the world of Immersive Telepresence in Theatre, using visual immersive anthropology techniques and this is just a summary of what I encountered and felt this week….

While lost in the madness of Lear.

King Lear:Online

I find myself meeting two groups of Theatre students, that are rehearsing Shakespeare’s: King Lear. Rehearsals take place over a telepresence screen  and a window of communication is opened between two countries that are 1554.6KM apart.

This happened between students from the University of Tampere, Finland & Coventry University, UK.

But it is so much more than this…..

Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Adventures, Art

Poets Project- Isle of Raasay.

Format

IMG_1634 (1)

This was a holistic accelerated learning experience, to be able to connect with the land on a research level, emotional level through art and explore technical skills and apply them has been such an experience that has sincerly made me want to explore this further in my own creative practice and career.   I have never been to a place that has left me feeling like a part of me was left there and I am missing it. To have the sound of your hand being removed from your pocket that was so loud that my senses and ears had forgotten to scale the volume and I listened to the silence. We had to experience him, we had to listen to him.

The landscape was simply epic, surrounded by the Caledonian Mountains we scaled the Isle of Rassey upon foot and with the help of a minibus to get to our locations. We were there to document and connect with the island. We had previously been introduced to the poem “Hallaig” by Sorley Maclean.

“Time, the deer, is in Hallaig Wood

There’s a board nailed across the window
I looked through to see the west
And my love is a birch forever
By Hallaig Stream, at her tryst

Between Inver and Milk Hollow,
somewhere around Baile-chuirn,
A flickering birch, a hazel,
A trim, straight sapling rowan.

In Screapadal, where my people
Hail from, the seed and breed
Of Hector Mor and Norman
By the banks of the stream are a wood.”

( S.Maclean)

Categories 21st Century Media Practice, Film Making

Zero Project

..............,.........Project

“The film drama is the opium of the people…down with bourgeois fairy-tale scenarios…long live life as it is!” Dziga Vertov

TASK-The verite piece must be a real story about real people. We are not looking for television formats or fabricated spectacles. The essence of any engaging documentary is a story, strong characters, strong imagery and a journey, conflict, resolution or crisis that we follow through the video. These should be your guiding principles when researching and producing your piece. We want you to really explore a more fluid approach to image making in conjunction with a multi-layered use of audio to build a simple soundscape. The film should be three minutes long and should be sensory in its approach.