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IIIF beta 0.1: Three Open Sessions 9/11/13 March

fullsizerenderThe first ever edition of IIIF – International Interdisciplinary Improvisation Festival – will start with an open Carpet Session next Thursday, 9 March 14:00-17:00 !  (doors open at 13:30)

During this beta 0.1 festival, in which an international group of artist from Amsterdam, Berlin, London, Paris and Goteborg will work together intensively for five days, we will hold a total of three Open Sessions, to share and gather thoughts, insights, energy and play from any improvisers who want to join us in our quest.

The central question of this edition is “How to document improvisation principles and processes?”, which the research group intends to tackle with a healthy mix of practice, play and reflection.

Next to the opening session on Thursday there will be one mid-festival open session on Saturday and an open session on Monday to close the festival. 

You are welcome to join, also spontaneously! Note that only the Thursday session is at the Carpet Session studio, the other two are in the beautiful studio of De EesterRental cost sharing: if you join, bring a self-chosen amount (5-10 euro) so we can cover our costs.

9 March, Thursday, doors open: 13:30 / 14:00-17:00
dansstudio Vredenburgersteeg 31-35, Amsterdam

11 March, Saturday, doors open: 13:30 / 14:00-17:00
studio De Eeester, C. Van Eesterenlaan 266, Amsterdam.

13 March, Monday, doors open: 13:30 / 14:00-17:00
studio De Eeester, C. Van Eesterenlaan 266, Amsterdam.

We are looking forward to play/exchange/perform with you!

See you next week,

the ‘Research Group’ of IIIF beta 0.1

Andrea Hackl
Benedikte Esperi
Catharine Cary
Esmeralda Detmers
Jagna Anderson
Maria Michailidou
Shelley Owen
Thomas Johannsen

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Inviting you to IIIF beta 0.1 – International Improvisation Festival in Amsterdam

Hey all improvisers, instant composers, dancers, musicians, actors, philosophers, pudding makers far and wide !

IIIF beta 0.1 poster by Catharine Cary

IIIF beta 0.1 poster by Catharine Cary

From the 9th to the 13th of March 2017, we are proposing IIIF – a beta festival 0.1 that looks at the artistic practice of interdisciplinary improvisation. This festival will feel like performers mingling and playing together, it will feel like serious scientific researchers trying to grasp and record what they are doing and it will feel like a lot of nice people gathering to cook and eat together. Would you like to participate ?

IIIF 0.1 – International Interdisciplinary Improvisation Festival Amsterdam, Holland

9 to 13 March 2017

An invitation by : Benedikte Esperi (SW) Thomas Johannsen (NL) Catharine Cary (US/FR)

and

supported by the Carpet Sessions Amsterdam, Genetic Choir Amsterdam, Instant Pudding !, Dansverk and the Faculty of Fine and Applied Art in Gothenburg, Sweden.

  

BACKGROUND

One of the crucial elements of advancing an art form is artistic research. Research and documentation, and the process of doing it, allow the form to open, consider, grow and take pauses to understand. All three of us, and many others around the world that practice instant composition within one discipline or across many, are interested in growing the knowledge and practice of our art, and increasing its public.

WHAT ?

IIIF 0.1 will be held in Amsterdam, the next ones probably in Gothenburg and Avignon, followed by other European cities where connected improvisation artists live and work.
This first meeting is meant to better define our and your ambition for a connected international community of improvisers that collects and makes useful the various approaches to improvisation. The intention of this work would be to further connect, inspire and develop pathways between the various communities in Europe and around the world.

One of the great things about today is that there are more and more festivals, workshops, meetings, practice sessions, and movement around interdisciplinary improvisation. Yes ! This is just one more, until the cup runneth over, and suddenly our art form is everywhere, contaminating everything, and making a lot of people inside and outside of it really happy.

We are proposing 4 “research circle” sessions to people who have expressed to us a specific interest in the process of documenting artistic research in interdisciplinary improvisation, and we are proposing 3 “open circle” interdisciplinary improvisation practice sessions.

 

WHO ?

The initiative is started by Benedikte, Catharine and Thomas, but we are very open to include more people into the core group of enablers of IIIF. Come participate if you can, and even if you cannot, let us know if you would be interested, and on what potential level of engagement. (e.g. being associated as an artist in the research, proposing content and being present during all the festival sessions, carrying the project artistically/organisationally with us, supporting IIIF 0.1 by providing sleeping place for someone from abroad, just hopping on and off…)

More extensive information, and also how to get in contact with us you can find in this pdf: iiif festival invitation

 

WHERE?

Thursday 9 March:
The first open session to start the festival is at the usual Carpet Session studio:
dansstudio Vredenburgersteeg,
Vredenburgersteeg 31-35, Amsterdam.

Friday 10 to Monday 13 March:
All other days/sessions (except the brunch) are at:
Studio De Eester, C. Van Eesterenlaan 266, Amsterdam.

 

WHEN ?

9 to 13 March 2017

OPEN CIRCLE SESSIONS
are from 14:00 to 17:00
on Thursday 9, Saturday 11 and Monday 13

– doors open at 13H30

RESEARCH CIRCLE SESSIONS include all open sessions, and are in total all four days 10:00-17:00 (only Thursday, we start at 14:00) .  More detailed info in the pdf.

 

   

HOW? — DOCUMENTATION

That’s the idea of this IIIF – how to document? – it will be however we imagine and test it out – drawings, entries in the website, texts, songs, videos, scholarly treatises …

For this IIIF beta, Benedikte will be in charge of video documentation that could result in definitions, small instructive moments, or explanations of a technique which sharpens our ability to be present, to notice and to compose in the instant. The target is moving and the work is evolutionary, we may invent new forms of art and of research during these 4 days. If you come, you need to be OK with your image being used. If you like to take video and like to edit, click here. (Benedikte) benedikte.esperi@gmail.com

Otherwise, bring an open mind, a big glass of water, a camera if you can shoot video and like to, an instrument. And a notebook. Wear comfortable clothes.

 

PARTICIPATION IN THE COSTS

sliding scale of 5 to 10 euros per session.

 


And here’s who we are :

Benedikte Esperi (SW)

Holds an MFA in Contemporary Performative Arts with practice in dance for screen, physical performance in public space and sound art. She has run the company Dansverk since 2007 which produces solo and ensemble performances. Since 2011, She is also a part time lecturer in dance at The Academy of Music and Drama in Gothenburg.

http://www.benedikteesperi.com

Thomas Johannsen (NL)

Performer and performance maker who works on the borders between fine art, theatre, dance and music. Improvisation and open systems of meaning creation form a strong current in all his work. ( http://www.thojoh.com) He is founder and artistic director of the Genetic Choir ( http://www.genetic-choir.org ) and created the international platform for Interdisciplinary Instant Composition, with its Amsterdam emanation of the Carpet Sessions. http://www.instantcomposition.com

Catharine Cary (US/FR)

A visual performative artist known as ‘‘la tagueuse élégante”, Catharine Cary is a painter, a dancer and female. She is co-founder of Instant Pudding!, a platform that provokes opportunities for sharpening skills for scenic improvisation across Europe. http://www.catharine-cary.com

http://www.instant-pudding.com

 

a living/moving Wikipedia for Improvisation

image

For the end-of-season gathering of the Carpet Sessions coming Thursday, what are your wishes to spend the afternoon?

My own proposal would be to toy around with ideas and work forms how improvisers (from different disciplines) could build a dictionary of their work, together.

Backed by the foundation behind the Carpet Sessions, and in collaboration with Instant Pudding in Paris and ImproXchange in Berlin, I am preparing a project in exactly that gist, and this could be a way to give direction to the Carpet Sessions organised by different people in the coming year, if we would feel like it.

Making such a Wikipedia of improvisation (like a dictionary of everything relating to improvisation) is actually taking the open improvisation knowledge base that we started here on this website to a professional level and making it editable and adjustable for a much bigger community.

It is also provoking several questions, amongst which
– how can you define at all things about improvisation (that by nature likes to be undefined)
– in which way the words/media in such a dictionary can relate as closely as possible to the actual work being done on the floor (rather than the dictionary becoming a purely academic exercise)

Let’s speak/play/dance/sing about it further on Thursday. Looking forward to it… 13:00-17:00

See you there!

Thomas

What are the Carpet Sessions? / Where is the studio? Click here.

Open session Can I go solo? 17-12 postponed!!

The last session of Can I go solo? on december 17th, will be postponed till january 2016. Please keep an eye on this blog for the exact date and time so i can keep you updated!!

For now; i wish everyone a great holiday and a smashing 2016.

Esther

Second round of ‘Can i go solo?’ starts december 3. 13.00-1530. Welcome!

3/10/17 december 13.00-15.30

A new series of three sessions start next week. artists from any discipline (performing ans non-performing) are welcome to join us in the search for balancing the groupwork and solowork within improvisation. What makes us a group, how do we perform as a group, how can i go solo within the group, where is my timing, our energy, how does it flow?

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor group

all these questions came up in the previous series. Now we want to continue our work.

if you want to know what happened in the previous sessions, read our summary below

Leave a respons if you want to join in.

https://instantcomposition.wordpress.com/carpet-collective/

There was a sense of Rebellion”

About Can I go solo?

Three sessions have taken place by now.

In these three sessions we worked with actors, musicians, dancers, visual artists.

A lot of questions arose during the work. We wrote them down to share, but we didn’t try to come to a group answer on them. Everyone found their own answers (or not). The ones i write down here are a combination of our shared observations and my personal thoughts on the subject.

Questions written down were:

  • What is my relationship to groups 4-20 people? How do I explore that physically, sonically, etc.?
  • if you are are so together as a group, how do you start a new initiative? When do you leave what you do and adept/imitate?
  • Is being a group truly in what you do or in being aware the others are doing/starting something else? (how to make it organic instead of dropping it immediately)
  • How to keep personal freedom within a group.
  • Where’s the balance between following-leading?
  • Is it possible to follow and lead at the same time by all at once? A group mind which also listens to the individual?
  • What is the role of patience?
  • In which layer can we do “all the same”? Surrender to actual copying and trust that this will lead to something else?
  • Can a solo be created organically through group work or the sensitivity of the group?
  • Do you (I) dare to ‘take the stage’ in group work?
  • Can i tune into group thought the focus of developing solo material? During the sessions a lot of questions arose. Such as:
  • Are you a soloist when you are the only one doing something (e.g. a remark on being the only one with a certain expertise in the group)
  • Are you having a solo moment when you are not doing what everybody else does, but are still attributing to the impro?
  • What does it mean to be together and how does that relate to different disciplines?
  • How do we become a group thanks to our diverse background, instead of in spite of that.
  • How can we use our own expertise/background/discipline to contribute to this improvisational set

Observations on GROUP:

We started our research by doing the same thing all together at the same time. There was no audience, everybody was improvising all the time, the whole time. This lead to the following remarks:

Not copying defines the group, but focusing on the same while doing different things.

A group becomes interesting to watch when you can still see the individuals within the group.

Feeling part of the group came with a feeling of organic mood/rhythm/movement.

There was a sense of rebellion, which leads to making small changes to the given group theme: was this impatience or evolution?

The second and third sessions we worked with a more structured way of improvising. There was audience, and the structure meant we started with an empty space, and one by one we would start improvising, up to a maximum of 4 performers. This way we wanted to create more room, time and space for all the elements we encountered in the first session. It gave us the possibility to observe the process more. These are some observations on those sessions.

What makes us a group? The very fact that we are in this room, concentrating on the same work, makes us a group. But then we find there are groups within groups.

The performers are a group, the visual artists are a group, the audience is a group. You can play with this. You can try to diffuse the boundaries between these sub-groups by not acknowledging the difference. If you consider everyone who is physically present as part of the group, then you create a kind of confusion for everyone about the part their taking in the improvisation (e.g. Is there an audience, when you consider the audience a part of the improvisers?)

TRUST was a word that came up more and more; trusting your group members to focus on the same thing as you. Trusting the each other to follow and lead when it feels necessary. But also trusting yourself to change or alter the improvisations form/energy/etc. When you think it necessary.

It appears that often everyone felt the action needed to change, but no one dared taking charge and break or shift the action. So group ca also mean no one dares to take initiative.

Trusting the group gives a natural rhythm to the improvisation.

Waiting long enough to be/ feel like a group seems to be important.

ADDING and BUILDING and DIVERSIFY:

We defined a difference between the several actions you can take as a group;

You can ADD to one another’s action. Meaning a does something, and B steps in and does something to counter it, or support it or, broaden it.

but you can also BUILD. This would mean, A starts with an action, B steps in and does the same, so does C, D, etc. By committing our self to this one action as a group, we narrow down and intensify the action until a climax is reached, after which something new can start to happen.

DIVERSIFYING would mean that every group member has an individual action, but is still very much aware of the actions of all the other performers. So there is still a group work going on, although it is not immediately clear on sight what the group focus is. It’s just the TRUST between all the group members that our mutual focus will keep us together.

On the matter of SOLO:

Does solo work exist within a group? Or is it merely a continuous shifting of focus, between doing the same thing, to everybody doing something individual to one person doing something different from the rest, with all the group giving their attention?

Also solo moments can work as a tool for changing the group energy ans rhythm. It bends/breaks/shifts the ongoing flow.

Solo can be:

a new starting point

the shifting of focusing

breaking the energy.

On MULTIDISCIPLINARITY

In the first session the performing group seemed to be a more dominant subgroup within the group. Fast decision making, feedback, action, leading. Whereas the non-performing artists seemed more observant, following, silent. After talking about this the next session, there was more room for different kind of impulses and initiative. More visual actions, more awareness of space, colour, sound. And a greater sense of freedom by everyone to bring in any impulse or action you wanted. This freedom led to a beautiful series of moments where performance, colour, sound and spacing came together. This freedom seemed to give us more sensitivity for each others’ impulses and more possibilities to explore new grounds.

(Dis)connecting the dots – The Report

The very fruitful research of working with musicians, dancers & actors on equal footing in Instant Composition Performance has culminated in a detailed review article that can be found here:

(Dis)connecting the dots – Merging dance, theatre and music in improvisation

 

connecting_dots2_pusteblumen_grey_light3Parts of the article were used to extend our Knowlegde Base with another main chapter (Material) and a subchapter (Phrasing). Please let me know if you see anything that you cannot agree to from your own practice.

Also, if this inspires you to write more subchapters to the Knowledge Base, or contribute your knowledge in any other way (we are still looking for a gifted website person to make our improvisation.wiki more ‘3D’  🙂  )  – do get in contact.

Thanks to all the performers, to allimprov and to Anja Boorsma for making (Dis)connecting the Dots possible! (click here for the original session invitation post)

The performers who contributed their time and expertise to our extending knowledge on interdisciplinary improvisation work in this project were:

James Hewitt
Bernt Nellen
Wouter Snoei
Tanaquil Schuttel
Zwaan de Vries
Anja Boorsma
Esmeralda Detmers
Jurriaan Kamp
Edgard Geurink
Maria Michailidou
Annabel Garriga
Stefania Petr
Thomas Johannsen

Writing on Improvisation – 11 June & 10 September

In closing of the Carpet Season of this year, I propose an unusual gathering:

Let’s have a look together at the subject of leaving traces of writing about our improvisation work. How can that be done, in a subject as wide as interdisciplinarity and as fluid as improvisation? Which type of writing is useful/effective for our own process and which types of writing are effective for sharing with others? How can we find the words that are full and clear enough for developing the craft of instant composition together?

calvin-writingBettina Neuhaus & Maria Michailidou will meet with me on Thursday, 11 June, and we invite anyone who was involved in Carpet Sessions before to join us. We’ll play, perform and write in still to be defined order and interlacing…

Bring your favorite writing tool (laptop, paper+pen, smartphone, typewriter… 😉 ) and your performer’s presence.

Results will be published in our ever-growing Improvisation Knowledge Base.

If you would like to be there, please announce your presence by writing a comment to this post.

11 June 2015

13:00-17:00

What are the Carpet Sessions? / Where is the studio?

We plan another sessions like this for the beginning of the season: 10 September

– if you’d like to note it in your agenda already 🙂

Writing on Improvisation – 11 June

In closing of the Carpet Season of this year, I propose an unusual gathering:

Let’s have a look together at the subject of leaving traces of writing about our work. How can that be done, in a subject as wide as interdisciplinarity and as fluid as improvisation? Which type of writing is useful/effective for our own process and which types of writing are effective for sharing with others? How can we find the words that are full and clear enough for developing the craft of instant composition together?

calvin-writingBettina Neuhaus & Maria Michailidou will meet with me on Thursday, 11 June, and we invite anyone who was involved in Carpet Sessions before to join us. We’ll play, perform and write in still to be defined order and interlacing…

Bring your favorite writing tool (laptop, paper+pen, smartphone, typewriter… 😉 ) and your performer’s presence.

Results will be published in our ever-growing Improvisation Knowledge Base.

If you would like to be there, please announce your presence by writing a comment to this post.

11 June 2015

13:00-17:00

What are the Carpet Sessions? / Where is the studio?

We plan another sessions like this for the beginning of the season after the summer. (first or second Thursday of September – if you’d like to note it in your agenda already).

See you either for this, or next week for the open session of (Dis)connecting the Dots (4 June), and otherwise: Have a great summer!

Continuing Improvisation Research for 2014/2015

Dear all,

we are looking back at another year of intriguing little projects and great investigations in interdisciplinary improvisation.

As always towards the summer I am asking what your ideas and wishes would be for next season, projecting forward your intentions to open new area’s of improvisation or revisit and deepen some of the existing lines of research.

So please let me know about your intentions to stay connected to this platform also in the coming year.
(read the three questions below)

Just to first give you an overview of the things that came by and got re-worked in the last two seasons by you and others:

Interlocking Principles (Balinese kecak rhythms as common ground for improvising interdisciplinary)

Objects and Stuff (object theatre, props and puppetry in improvisation)

Shadow Carpet (using shadow theatre in improvisation)

Structured Improvisation (improvisation scores, plots and structures and what they conjure up)

The dreamer and the observer (two aspects/attitudes/archetypes of the interdisciplinary improviser)

Time and Duration (taking time, losing time, using time in improvisation performance)

Games of Interaction (the world of rule-creating and rule-following in improvisation games)

What’s whispering (listening to the more subtle layers of reality while improvising)

The secret Life of Phrases (phrasing in improvised music, phrasing in improvised dance)

(Dis)connecting the dots (actors/dancers/musicians and the question of ‘readability’ and ‘meaning’)

       

So what are we picking up for next season? What will be new land to explore?

Continue reading

Time in Improvisation – new entry in the Knowledge Base

Hi there,

I gave the Knowledge Base a new structure, now forming two big chapters:

Improvisation Basics

Performance Issues

And I wrote a new general entry about the theme of

Time and Duration

following up on the sessions I led with Kim-José Bode in spring this year. There is of course much more to be said about this theme, so please add!

  

    

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