Monday, April 26, 2010

Updates: New Work for live cinema performance and sound installation

AS the atypical revolutionary slogan indicates:
As for me, there won't be any chillin' chez moi just yet...

Two premieres on the same day, May 2!

New live cinema project:

Treatment for Film in 9 Scenes (live performance)

Sampled footages from various movies, videos from youtube, and the internet, are taken out of their original context and placed into a meta-narrative of what may seem to be a series of unrelated fragments juxtaposed to create a new movie. The performance investigates the possibilities of creating new forms of narratives amidst an overload of sensory experience. Sounds, like field recordings, Foley sound effects, and electronic noise, are transformed further away from their original sounds and often never correlate to the images seen on screen. To counter the chaos, the audience is invited to close their eyes during the performance, while two different sound cues are played for them. Upon hearing the sound cue, the audience is invited to open their eyes to follow either one of the two parallel narratives that can be found in the rapid flow of data stream. The work is at first a deep investigation on listening, then the combination of listening and viewing.

“Treatment for Film” is an experiment on finding a balance in ambiguity and specificity, where the mind’s activity of reading or deriving meaning from signs, can help create individualized cinematic narratives with the images and sounds they perceive. The perception of order produces pleasure.

“Treatment for Film” is literally “performed cinema”, where it makes the usual passive audience into an active participant of the movie making process.

*Treatment will premiere at The Substation in Singapore during the cool new monthly program called Rooted in The Ephemeral Speak (R.I.T.E.S.) by intermedia artist-curators Kai Lam and Wen Lee. Other equally interesting performances by local Singapore sound artists are also slated on the same event. Cai Qing, Marc Chia (One Man Nation), Debbie Ding, and Zai Tang.

If you happen to be in Manila on the same day, despite being unable to perform with TEARS FOR FEARS for their Manila tour, I have a sound work installed at Manila's (in)famous Luneta Park (Rizal Park) for Innovative Noise Collectives' "Noises at the Park" concert. A pun on the monthly "Concert at the Park" events held at Luneta -- "Noises" will be all about good old volume destruction. Though I find the program a bit strange (it's divided in 5 acts for a 1 hour show, which also includes some tame world / ethnic music performances and performance artists inbetween the electronic bands), nevertheless the choice of venue and the platform to set up such an event is quite unique. Electronic noise performances in parks are probably uncommon in other places in the world, where family picnics, loitering homeless people, and lovers walking run about the place. I was originally slated for one of the acts but as I had made commitments to RITES, I won't be there physically... aurally, I would at least.

SPKTR.park is a site-specific installation in Luneta Park. It's the first of the SPKTR series which are site-specific sound installations created mainly utilizing field recordings from the same environment. Like a sonic mirror, a ghost double, or a mischievous apparition who may even try to subvert the sound environment; it acts as a meta-evidence to a testimony about what was done by specters of persons and things not present physically. We are confronted with a predicament with what is lost and what is gained in our cognition and awareness of sounds in our environments.

Luneta (Rizal Park) has had it's share of being the site some of the most significant moments in the Philippine history: national hero, Jose Rizal's execution, the Declaration of Independence from American rule, to political rallies of former dictator Ferdinand Marcos.
Rizal park also serves as the spot where the 0km marker is located. the 0km marker serves as the point of origin or kilometer zero to all other cities in the Philippines.
Taking this as a point of departure for composition, SPKTR.park also investigates a mathematical function that occurs in basic sound frequencies -- the sine wave. The Sine wave has no beginning or end, a wave pattern that occurs in nature on a fixed period after which it repeats itself. Sine waves are unique in that they are the only sound in nature not to contain any harmonics beyond their fundamental frequency -- they are the vampires of the sound world casting no harmonic shadow or reflection.

For the whole program: