[NetBehaviour] go tell it to the mountains

Michael Szpakowski m at michaelszpakowski.org
Tue Jul 7 01:52:20 CEST 2020

 Hi Johannes 
well I'd resist the setting up of what for me are false dichotomies -either Darmstadt ( and I think Cage would have had something strong to say about being subsumed *there*) or Solange Knowles, either the digital or corporeal. I don't think that Zoom made the performance of 4 33 better, just interestingly different and thereby in a sense added new depths to what we might expect from the work.I'm of the Harry Hill school - this or that , which is better? only instead of the *FIGHT* ! I'd just say well ..er.. both are bettercheers!Michael

    On Tuesday, July 7, 2020, 12:15:28 AM GMT+1, Johannes Birringer <johannes.birringer at brunel.ac.uk> wrote:  
 Hi Michael and all:

enjoyed your comment!  looked/listened in again. I looked at the faces and persons playing (this is a Scottish/Uk ensemble, based in Edinburgh?), and pondered why I responded to a Cage concert with my note on Stockhausen. New music, right??  Darmstadt tradition, how odd.  Not sure anything can get transcended.

I had actually been reading about Shabaka Hutchings and the new album just released, "We Are Sent Here by History"  (Shabaka and the Ancestors), and following the discussions swirling around in our societies. do we start questioning our traditions, allegiances?  is the anti-black curriculum dismantable? chamber music in helicopters, good heavens. This is a different discussion for sure, but I wish to pick up your faith or enjoyment of the zoom concert and question it, if you permit... I watched many musicians in this fragmenting multiroom Red Note zoom pretending not to play, and on occasion heard some rambling, wonderfully interfering noises, someone had unmuted their mic, nice,  but why were they not all unmuted?  You felt there was community? ambient world? Could we even imagine this ambient contingent world, looking at all the instrumentalists in these tiny zoom frames?  Mind you, I am actually trying to raise a larger question, which came up in the Lab of Dance conference in Warsaw last week (https://sites.google.com/view/labofdance) - do you like dancing by yourself in front of camera? Do you like seeing yourself?  can you teach dance in a zoom ? create choreography, meet audience, exchange vibrations and energies with real people in organic space? Liberating openness or frustrating closedness?

It might be interesting to discuss this further, if some of you are teaching or preparing to do hybrid stuff in the fall. One of the dancers in Warsaw told me (the format was arranged like this:  you watched the 5 video lectures/presentations beforehand, on youtube, then the panelists met with audience in zoom at 6pm
for Q & A, yet discussion was moderated via facilitator who read questions in chat, then translated them....) that she had not mustered the attention or energy to watch all the video lectures, others confessed they get tired in front of zoom. Others reported from the summer semester dance classes: Working with camera as partner, trying things (how do you do Community Dance in zoom?).  How can public space be merged with virtual space,  how can dance be connecting,
creating dialogues? students tried all manner of things, danced in their kitchens, their balconies, created audiowalks, online work-books; networked performances, learning more about combination online-offline, etc. There was ambition, and then ambivalence, critique. Capacities are now nearly exhausted; fragmentation ever-present; non verbal communication is stopped; energies not shareable, shadows are missing, so are sweat and smell. There is no substitute for flesh.  Sadness and frustration.

I feel almost exactly as in these last observations, and could do without zoom, for sure.

with regards
Johannes Birringer

From: Michael Szpakowski <m at michaelszpakowski.org>
Sent: 06 July 2020 17:27
Subject: Re: [NetBehaviour] online performance of 4' 33"

Cheers Johannes! Thanks for sharing it. It struck me that the final thing transcended in a number of interesting ways the original idea which had a quality of a ‘rather good wheeze’ about it, something light and fun and amusing. That remained ,sure enough, but there was definitely more...things about community and what it means to be a performer and also an extension, through Zoom, of the encouragement of ambient listening that was part of the original. A very liberating openness to the whole thing ...

Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone<https://yho.com/footer0>

On Sunday, July 5, 2020, 8:13 pm, Johannes Birringer <Johannes.Birringer at brunel.ac.uk> wrote:

thanks Michael

rather wonderful and curious.  And I shared your link with friends and colleagues
(from music and theatre) who had alerted me last week to a streaming of Stockhausen's 6-hour
"Mittwoch aus Licht"  --  Birmingham's first staging of an opera that was previously considered unstageable;  truly extraordinary and could be of interest. It’s being streamed on Saturday from 5pm....


you probably have heard of the helicopter string quartet, part of "Mittwoch aus Licht".
well it's in here........ (https://vimeo.com/435367416)

they apparently flew it.

Johannes Birringer


From: NetBehaviour <netbehaviour-bounces at lists.netbehaviour.org<mailto:netbehaviour-bounces at lists.netbehaviour.org>> on behalf of Michael Szpakowski <m at michaelszpakowski.org<mailto:m at michaelszpakowski.org>>
Sent: 03 July 2020 15:25
To: netbehaviour new netbehaviour
Subject: [NetBehaviour] online performance of 4' 33"

I just participated in this Zoom performance of Cage's 4' 33'' organised by the splendid Red Note Ensemble. I play sopranino recorder doubling mbira in the second movement .


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