All entries for Tuesday 15 March 2005

March 15, 2005

Our Argument…..

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...seemed to go down well

Despite forgetting lines up until the minute of performance (yes, while people were coming in I was still in Sophie's projection booth looking at our script…at least that's my story!) the argument went as planned. It was very intense with quickfire reponses, a lot of shouting and some angry words!

I think good points of the arguement were:

The fact that it underlined the intention of the piece after the enigmatic opening by signalling the complete divide between men and women
People could identify with nearly every point that was said in the argument and it made the spectator confront their own feelings about the opposite sex
It drew the audience into the piece away from a mere viewing point – they were challenged to back us up or shout down points that were brought up
It brought a different dynamic to the piece because it was a world away from classical script or any traditional dramatic qualities...Me and Zoe tried to give the argument depth and merit whilst still keeping the raw energy and irrationality that a simple argument between a couple would contain...There was swearing and the frustration at the other person with simple walking away in disgust
It showed the stupidity of much of the anger and the banality of many of the complaints and this was emphasised as it was in such close proximity to the spectator with such intensity…Becuase they were drawn into the argument the spectator was also forced to question whether their own complaints were stupid like these were. The effects of trying to get one-up on the other person and undermining them (eg. when i responded to zoe shouting about my memory loss 'what did you say??') also demonstrated this.

Responses To The Argument –

I was happy with the feedback we got to the argument....
It was said that it was realistic and intense and brought a nice dynamic to the piece.
People commented on how they felt drawn into the dispute by involuntarily agreeing with the points raised and therefore they had added interest in the piece as they felt it affected them.
The comedic effect of the piece went down well with some laughter and this helped to create a them against us scenario.
The loud argument was effective in that it provided a nice contrast with the quiet, eerie beiginning and the chilling nature of the end video and peaceful last tableau.


Final Performance

Loose Script:

Audience shown into studio by Hannah and Ian, sending guys left of the brick wall barrier and gals right....lights are off.

Edward's audio introduction begins - it lasts for two minutes. As it progresses the installation begins to 'come alive':
Light revealing art collage

Lights in the booths come on revealing me on the guy's side and zoe on the gal's in neutral poses and wearing clearly masculine (suit) and feminine (skirt) dress

Me and Zoe play the booth sound clip featuring famous speeches which clash with Ed's audio clip creating an interesting and mildly overwhelming effect for the audience

As the sound clip ends the Chorus begins their chanting and movement at the end of the performance speech. They sing, then dance and then recite parts of the text until they reach a crescendo - taking off their masks to reveal very interesting and effective face markings
Whilst this is going on the booths lights fade and the booth sounds are switched off so the focus turns to the Chorus

This is also accompanied by the projection screens which come on as this progressies - they show an image of brutality (again with male bias on one side and female on t'other) in stylised movement shadows lit from behind the screen.

The Chorus finishes and there is a moment of refelction for the audience to take in the art collage or the installation in general. Me and Zoe then slowly made our way in amongst the spectators (crowded around the hanging collage) and Zoe started the argument, with me immediately responding....
the argument took the form of snidey comments about the opposite sex, face to face slagging off, trying to undermine the other with jokes and straight insults and also looking for back up from our 'side' (our gender group) and in this way we tried to mirror a real argument

The arguement ends with us shouting that we want to communicate with each other - at this moment the Medea Film comes on.
The film had men and women carrying out the same practices (walking, standing and reciting texts) and interchanging. In this way it questioned preconceptions and standards of each sex. The text used concerned the cruelty and sensitivity of each sex.

As the film carried on me and zoe, who at first were angry and insular, walked toawrds the film, as if drawn to it. Our body language became more open and less angry and, as the film drew to its conclusion we stodd on either side of the screen staring at each other

This film then sequed into Ian and Rhys' film concerning childhood....The film showed children playfighting and pictures of family happiness. As well as reminding the audience of how this family has been torn apart and the cruelty of the situation it also brought in the idea of Medea and Jason's inner child being released in this argument.
As the film progressed me and zoe moved closer to each other, becoming affectionate. The images of children framed us as we began kissing and then a sheet came down off the catwalk which the Chorus wrapped around us. We moved onto the floor and became covered by the sheet with the film projection moving to be projected on the couple. Therefore these scenes of childhood were clearly linked with this live performance

The film ended with parts of the text recited by an anonymous voice and this final scene on the floor. The film ended and the spectators filtered out.
To bring the audience away the booth lights came on, as did the booth soundclips which reminded the audience of the universal themes we focussed on (equality, feminism etc)


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