Very much wishing I could be at Proximity Festival 2017. But, as I can’t, I’m enjoying watching interviews and highlights from this and past festivals instead.
Lately, I’ve been unsure whether this blog should be public or private, professional or personal.
Personal blogging tends to leave me feeling exposed and vulnerable; professional (or heavily ‘public face’ curated at least) leaves me constrained.
Even more recently, however, I’ve been reminded (by, for example, reading Barbara Browning’s The Gift) that it’s that intersection and interplay and in-between space that I actually really enjoy. That I need to remember it’s not one or the other – it’s never one or the other, even if you kid yourself it is. So I should toughen up and let it be. It means I might disclose too much occasionally and perhaps feel a little embarrassed. It means my ‘public face’ potentially becomes less and less consistent or, if not that, certainly richer and more complex. Which, of course, has both advantages and disadvantages depending on the audience and the moment.
Which is an interesting question – who do I imagine is the audience and the moment for this blog? I’ve never really established that in my mind. I was never, for example, trying to establish a blog that was for [insert group of people]. In part though, it’s me: it’s a kind of writing/reminding myself into being. But it’s also this idea of someone (or some people) with whom I could have an interesting conversation. Even if that conversation happens indirectly and asynchronously through internet snippets, videos, books, performances, ideas…
A disadvantage of this is, of course, a loss of control of narrative about the self. Or, really what I mean is a loss of branding. The kind of branding you need to do in certain situations where it’s important to present a cohesive, focused, context-sensitive version of yourself (at work, in certain relationships, in job interviews, etc.). But, we all understand that process, don’t we? That we all dial down (or up) certain aspects of ourselves for different situations? We just don’t really talk about it that much.
Re: dialing down or up I’m picturing a kind of sound-mixing board. One of those ones with the sliders and knobs. Most people have adopted a series of ‘presets’ for different situations that will foreground or limit certain qualities, personality traits, etc. Unfortunately, I think those pre-sets, once established, are often not as dynamic and open for review as they should be. That means we miss out on the richness and diversity that someone might bring or it can also mean that – if your sliders get stuck – you can’t adapt so well to a new situation (e.g. we’ve probably all experienced working with or being the person who works in one organisation, team or business but then doesn’t make the adjustments necessary for a new context).
Anyway, these are the kinds of things I think about when writing (or not writing) a blog post. But I think I’m going to try to let it go. Embrace, and trust, the chaos and remember that probably very few people think about or worry about this as much as I do.
Really interesting, persuasive article tracing the trajectory of Cooper-as-the-audience throughout the series so far.
1990s Cooper was an active force in his own story. He helped us navigate his surroundings, and see them with humor and wonder. He claimed, perhaps wrongly, but still convincingly, that there was order somewhere in the chaos. It’s natural for us to want to return to a mode where he can actively participate in his own story, where he’s helping solve its mysteries, instead of acting as its biggest conundrum. But even with his humanity lost and his agency gone, he still represents us onscreen. Even when he’s free-floating through a haze of glass boxes and stop-motion nightmares, we’re still with him. We’re still all Agent Cooper, navigating the mystery, and waiting to see where this is all going.
A highlight of the 2016 Festival of Live Art:
Blurring documentary with fantastical fiction, Vanitas is a smartphone procedural thriller told through the secret language of flowers.
The app: iTunes
The Facebook: Event page
‘What happens when you remove the typical social contract of the theatre seat? We invited the audience to walk in our oppressive world and they wanted to change it. The audience’s acts of touching and speaking, grabbing and yelling were both revelatory and deeply disturbing. Were they assholes or heroes?’
I’m excited for this but I really have no idea what to wear, or what ‘character’ to inhabit. I think I may have to play the role of someone who stumbled into this thing by accident and therefore looks out of place (within the imagined world of the show/party) but also as though they’re this way on purpose (at the meta level). Or, you know, I could just get over it and try to have a good time …
‘March 1972. The curtain has just closed on opening night of a brand new musical theatre experience. Backstage, the cast and crew are abuzz with adrenalin, hope, congratulations and recriminations. Do they have a smash on their hands? Were the months of hard work and late-night dance rehearsals worth it? Most importantly, who is secretly sleeping with the lead choreographer?
Live art production house The Boon Companions invite you to dig out your best Fosse-inspired outfit and throw yourself into the joy and madness of their Cast Party. There’ll be drinking, dancing, and the occasional explosive starlet meltdown.
From the team who brought you immersive theatre parties The Wedding Reception and Le Petit Salon comes a new experiential celebration of optimism and joy. Dress the part, inhabit your character, and keep your eyes and ears open at all times. You never know who or what you mind find..
Warning: Adult concepts, coarse language, loud music, alcohol served.’
‘I’m beginning to suspect that the reason SNM is so successful may be less that the experience is immersive but the fact that it is complex, compelling, and difficult to understand or complete alone. With 17 hours of content, of which only three can be experienced in a single performance, and more than 90 different rooms in which the action takes place, SNM is a social experience because it needs to be; because the performance cannot make sense without the offered experiences of other people. The story is necessarily incomplete without the pieces that other people can share.’