- moanin' hour (lost calls) by niko hafkenscheid
MOANIN' HOUR — LOST CALLSPRINT THIS PAGE
“I've crossed some kind of invisible line. I feel as if I've come to a place I never thought I'd have to come to. And I don't know how I got here. It's a strange place. It's a place where a little harmless dreaming and then some sleepy, early-morning talk has led me into considerations of beauty, perplexity and death.” Raymond Carver
The research project Moanin' hour is the second part of the production The better life which is scheduled for november 2013 and will be premiered at the 6th Contour biennial of Moving Image in Mechelen. The key question in The better life is how peripheric elements of the performance arts such as music, sound and light can be used as independant signsystems in relationship to their immediate environment. The key question of Moanin' hour is similar yet more specific. In this resarch project I'm looking for ways to approach the musical artefact, sound and live-performance as autonomous parameters in a theatrical setting. The triangle between music as sheer phenomenon, live-performance and the theatrical environment is as such systematically denuded and what remains is a game on the borders of different, peripheral elements of the performance-arts.
The opportunity to reflect in an early stage upon both workfields during the Working Title Platform at the Brigittines' Chapel in Brussels offers a perfect frame to work on a series of technical/artistic aspects that apply to both The better life as Moanin' hour.
For this very opportunity I chose to consider the specific location as a key player in the work-in-progress that will be shown. Under the title Moanin'hour (Lost Calls) I want to approach this offer both as an in-situ experiment, a part of the umbrella project The better life, and as an independant location-work within the framework of the research project Moanin' hour.
The two-weeks residency in the Chapel is seen as a chance to analyse in what way I can interpret the theatrical environment as a performance-maker, composer and live-performer focusing on the sound source as a mere artefact in an architectural context.
The presence of a giant churchbell in the heart of the building played a crucial role in this choice. The active interaction between music, the way it is perceived in the theatrical space and the live-action (or abscence of action) that activates it, accompanies it and transforms it, is precisely what I want to investigate during this specific residency.
Moanin' hour (Lost Calls) wants to propose a quest towards the perfection and purity of the bronze churchbell and towards the necessity/redundance of human presence within the theatrical game. It wants to be an investigation into the theatrical environment for one of te most powerful musical objects. An investigation of the position of the human being towards the soundobject and an extensive exercise in deconstructing the phenomenon music as a performative element.
The key question in this research remains 'who' or 'what' supports 'who' or 'what' in a theatrical environment, 'who' finally watches/listens to 'what'... Does the player actually really support the music? Does the music accompany the spectator? Does the soundobject comment on itself and brings about its own history? What role do live-performance, image and music take up within the architectural setting?
The title Moanin' hour (Lost Calls) implies an ironic, somewhat bitter undertone. In the first place it's a kind of comment upon the ambivalence of the artificially announced (or expected) emotion. At the same time it wants to cherish that ambivalence and invite the spectator to look for the sheer possibility of emotion in the theatrical environment.
Moanin' hour (Lost Calls) wants to bring on a series of facts of which the importance is subtly taken away or, on the contrary, the lack of importance given importance. As such the project wants to provide proof for the fact that those very counterpoints exist, as they do in daily life, that make us be puzzled about the true identity of our intentions. The meaning of Moanin' hour (Lost Calls) lies somewhere in between shapes and forms: between what you hear and see, experience and think, survive and desire there's always something that continuously shifts and changes its content.
Niko Hafkenscheid (concept, sound, performance), Isabelle Pauwelyn (co-development concept, performance), Miquel Casaponsa (co-development sound)
with the support of
workspacebrussels, wp Zimmer and the Vlaamse Gemeenschap
Isabelle Pauwelyn studied philosophy and worked for the Flemish Architecture Institute and Architectuurwijzer on projects around space and architecture. She is currently working as an artist in Brussels.
Miquel Casaponsa is an architect and musician. He works as a sound designer in Barcelona and Brussels.
More info: www.wpzimmer.be