Saturday, 8 July 2017

Rory Pilgrim: Software Garden as part of World Is Sudden: Summer Lab

World Is Sudden: Summer Lab is a project by Giles Bailey & CIRCA Projects. They invited international artists, performers, musicians, designers and dancers to make artworks in the urban and natural environments of the Northeast region and to propose new ways of discovering the area as a continuum, without divisions between nature and culture, city and countryside, street and path, local and foreigner, human and animal, day and night. Invited artists have created a series of day-long projects which fuse interdisciplinary experiences to each reflect upon a different host venue and their different role as a cultural producer in our region. Participants of the Summer Lab were invited to discover other forms of being, hearing, touching, tasting and seeing the world.

As part of World Is Sudden: Summer Lab, Rory Pilgrim presented an evening performance at BALTIC based on the work he had done during the day with participants from the summer school.

"Inspired by collaborative forms of quick action, improvisation and group making, the performance invites people to encounter a space of joy as a form of resistance and collective experience."

Rory Pilgrim explores questions of time and connections between activism, spirituality, music and performance. His recent work has explored the relationship between words, age and inter-generational dialogue as a radical proposition.

"Unfolding somewhere between Kabuki theatre, a pop concert and a political social space of action, this performance attempts to bring together a variety of people from different ages, backgrounds, human and robotic, to propose the creation of an embodied system of care and kindness as a software garden.

Exploring connections between technology, disability and care as a way of looking at larger political framework, the performance interweaves poetry, speech, song and choreography as part of a new growing experimental music album."

Despite only having a day together to learn the performance, the Summer Lab participants performed in such a natural and assured manner that it appeared that they had been working on the piece a lot longer than a day. There is a fine line between being prepared and being either over or under prepared, and on this occasion that balance was just right.

The combination of all the different elements, maintained my interest in what was rather a long performance considering that the participants only had a day together to rehearse. They seemed to be working as a team, responding well to each other and mirroring each other's actions. No one in particular seemed to be the 'leader' as such, but they all had a good awareness of each other and their movement on an individual and collective basis.

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