hell day 3 – vampiros lesbos … again

Maybe it’s not proper rehearsal form to spend most of the afternoon talking, but considering how much we have all seen of each other in the last few years, it’s difficult to avoid and really enjoyable. None-the-less, we still roared through a pile of stuff in quick time, something that I never used to be good at. Maybe it’s time to try and squash more into the rehearsal, or maybe we just need longer coffee breaks.

We started on the Vampiros Lesbos stuff today, that will probably be the centre of the work, and also watched more of Sex and Fury, and an old Cantonese Opera about an imporster prince or something who ends up getting the bad end of a bunch of demons and long-tongues soul-suckers. Emile thinks the music, a hurricane of cymbals and smashing percussion is Very Metal.

So far, this central scene revolves around a bunch of movies that occur as re-enacted scenes by the performers, cut-up video on televisions, and aural noise from the films in German, Japanese, Chinese, Italian. How to make that coherent and not sound like the multi-cultural bus-stop it is will be one of the major tasks in the next couple of weeks. Somehow I am personally not un-attracted to the cacophonous babel of de-contextualised scenes, and they could make sense as an hallucinogenic wash of memories of the vanquished in Hell, a de-focussed tide, ebbing as their memories depart and are forgotten, wisps out of an untuned radio. Or it could just sound like shit.

Back in the rehearsal studio of Dance Works though, bodies got reanimated, hands crawled, lips of the dead and eyes of the dead spoke and saw, and we did some very strange things. I’m still trying to separate what we did in Zürich from what we are doing now. Even though we all watched the video of the performance once, in beginning to work again on the ideas I think it’s really important to separate the idea itself from how it was developed. Things that happened in Zürich with Cornelia and Radovan are not necessarily what will happen here unless I say, “this is how we did it, these were the things we did, and this is why”, a kind of structural analysis of the process which would completely remove the possibility of discovering for ourselves what is latent within an idea.

At the same time, what we did in Zürich I am still very happy with, in that it corresponded to the atmosphere of hell I am trying to evoke, and there is always a slight, silent coercion on my part in directing the rehearsals over time to a particular expression of the various ideas in tandem with the complete freedom of playing with the ideas. From vagueness to coherence with the minimum of interference.

Again we finished with the plane crash stuff, watching the NASA Controlled Impact Demonstration for cabin action of scores of soon-to-be vaporised test mannequins, and went through another improvisation following each other’s head and torsos in our peripheral vision while sitting side-by-side, getting faster, more erratic and disturbing in our movements, and transfixing to watch. I decided I wanted to do this section as an installation in 2001: A Space Odyssey space suits, minus helmets, in a vast white gallery with rows and rows of seated bodies and the endless soundtrack of Sunn and Acid Mothers Temple.

Finish. Gala and I spent the night talking and went for a boulder at the new Lactic Factory indoor climbing gym in Collingwood, hence my tardiness in blogging.