Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Hollingsville TX7/12 ‘Events’

The Birth of Chance

After staging the first complete performance of Erik Satie’s Vexations, a work that requires over 18 hours in which to enfold, John Cage remarked that ‘the world looked new, absolutely new’. Ideas of simultaneity and the instantaneous, as developed in variety theatre, cabaret and modern dance, gave way to the notion of duration as the main organizing principle. Anything could now be part of a performance. Chance was suddenly no longer an abstract mathematical proposition or an expression of malign fate: it became more playful, a shadowy and untrustworthy reflection of the human gesture. What then has become of the stage itself? Is it just another non-place, or as the site for events that are as yet unknown? Can the world still be absolutely new? And who is now waiting in the wings to amaze us?

On episode seven of ‘Hollingsville’, scheduled to go out at 7.00 pm on Thursday May 27 on Resonance 104.4 FM, my studio guests will be Tai Shani, arranger of spectacles and creator of glamours, and cultural hustler supreme Richard Strange. Prepare to be blinded by silence. Specially commissioned musical interludes and moods are by ‘Hollingsville’ composer in residence, Graham Massey. Ins and outs, as always, are by Indigo Octagon. Life is a radical gesture, old chum.

See also:
Hollingsville Posts
Duration: or the Birth of Chance out of the Spirit of Music

Pictured above: the Philips Pavilion at the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair – ‘status: demolished’ - courtesy of the Structurae site.

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