Digital Disruptions: Bugs and glitches in live performance

Date of Event: April 3, 2020 Event Type: Interim Event
CfP: TaPRA Performance and New Technologies Working Group Interim Event – Friday 3rd April 2020 Digital Disruptions: Bugs and glitches in live performance Hosted and supported by New Adelphi Theatre: https://www.newadelphitheatre.co.uk/ and the Arts, Media and Communication Research Centre at the University of Salford Keynote: Matt Adams, Blast Theory: https://www.blasttheory.co.uk/ Performance and event coverage by The Ladies of the Press: http://www.ladiesofthepress.org/ What happens when we apply an aesthetic or disturbance of the digital space, such as a glitch or bug, to a live performance event? Paul and Levy outline the term ‘glitch’ as referring to ‘images and objects that have been tampered with’ or ‘corrupted’ and that this quality can be created ‘by using machines or digital tools in methods different from their normative modalities’ (2015, p.31). It is from this provocation that our interim event call arises – we are interested in curating a day of discussion and practice, where the notion of a glitch or bug in the system of a digital programme or machine is explored in relation to and through live performance practice. How might bugs or glitches – ‘ghosts in the machine that allow chance computational and electronic phenomena to appear and participate in the structure of the work’ (Causey 2016, p.454) – be provoked or applied to performance making? How can a ‘glitch aesthetic’, bringing to the centre the peripheral and ‘superficial flaws’ we experience in encounters with the digital (Betancourt 2017, p.7), be present in performance events? Might it, as Betancourt suggests, have the capacity to re-materialise, disrupt and disturb ‘the aura of the digital’ as ‘a self-productive domain, infinite, capable of creating value without expenditure’ (p.15)? What resistance can such practices offer to ‘surveillance capitalism’, operating ‘through the automated medium of an increasingly ubiquitous computational architecture of “smart” networked devices, things and spaces?’ (Zuboff 2019, p.8) We welcome proposals for papers, provocations, practice as research demonstrations and performances that respond to the call and may be aligned with the following areas:

  • Re-purposing or ‘non-normative’ uses of digital technologies in performance
  • Re-materialising the digital in live performance
  • Live failures of the digital in performance
  • Hacking digital/surveillance capitalism
  • Discordant and disruptive intersections of the computational and actual spaces
  • Embodied equivalents of digital failures, such as ‘glitches, bugs, application errors, system crashes, clipping, aliasing, distortion, quantization noise’ (Cascone in Betancourt 2017, p.5)
  • Clashes of bodies and computational technologies
This is a one-day event, with tea/coffee and lunch included and all participants must be TaPRA members. If you are not currently a member, you will be asked to join the organisation at the interim rate of £18 (waged) or £10 (postgraduate or unwaged) via http://tapra.org/join-tapra/ before the date of the event. Please submit a 300 word abstract, outlining your proposed contribution to the day, alongside an indication of your technical requirements and set up needs, and a short biographical statement to the working group convenors, Christina Papagiannouli, Jo Scott and Piotr Woycicki at perfandnewtech@tapra.org – the deadline for the submission of proposals is Friday 14th February. To support access to participation in this event, we have allocated funds for bursaries to cover travel and/or any other required access costs. SHOULD YOU WISH TO BE CONSIDERED FOR SUCH A BURSARY, PLEASE INCLUDE A STATEMENT (max 300 words) WITH YOUR PROPOSAL TO SUPPORT YOUR REQUEST. Your statement should address how you will benefit from attending the event, how a bursary will enable your participation, and should also include a breakdown of estimated costs for which you are requesting financial support (normally up to a maximum of £50). The Working Group Convenors will award bursaries based on:
  • the QUALITY of the applicant’s proposal,
  • the extent to which the applicant will BENEFIT from attending,
  • the financial NEED that might otherwise impede participation.
  Indicative Event Schedule: 10.00-11.00 – Registration, Coffee 11.00-11.15 – Welcome 11.15-12.30 – Keynote 12.30-13.30 – Lunch 13.30-15.00 – Session 1 15.00-15.30 – Break 15.30-17.00 – Session 2 17.00-18.00 – Plenary and wine reception

Immersive and Interactive Technologies and Live Performance: VR/AR/MR practices

Date of Event: April 6, 2019 Event Type: Interim Event

Immersive and Interactive Technologies and Live Performance: VR/AR/MR practices

TaPRA Performance & New Technologies Working Group Interim Event

Saturday 6th April 2019, University of South Wales, Cardiff Campus, The ATRiuM

Booking: https://immersivetechnologies.eventbrite.co.uk [This is a one-day event, with tea/coffee and lunch included and all participants must be TaPRA members. If you are not currently a member, you will be asked to join the organization at the interim rate of £15 via http://tapra.org/join-tapra/ before the date of the event.]

Keynote Speaker: Dr Jorge Lopes Ramos (executive director ZU-UK)

Launch & Wine Reception: Launch of Performance and VR Practice special issue, IJPADM. Wine reception and conversation with Dr Kerry Francksen and Prof. Sophy Smith (guest editors).

Following on from the annual conference at Aberystwyth and previous group events and conversations, the aim of the 2019 interim event is to explore different practices and modes of immersive and interactive technologies in live performance, as well as to investigate new narrative possibilities and audiences’ virtual experiences in live performance created by immersive technologies. As Kerry Francksen and Sophy Smith (2018) note, ‘[t]he use of virtual reality (VR) technologies has seen a significant resurgence in both industry-led and artistic communities in recent times. This re-emergence can be linked to the continuing growth and advancement in smart phone technologies (e.g. developments in accelerometers and gyrospic chips), as well as a significant interest within the games industry for developing a greater quality gaming experience.’ We want to explore this emergent theme and extend the 2018 TaPRA working group’s discussions on Empathy and Inclusiveness in Immersive Technologies to question: What new tools and spaces do immersive technologies offer to theatre and live performance? What opportunities and challenges do immersive technologies bring to the digital performer/performance-maker, from new forms of audience/participant interaction to new performance training methodologies, to new rehearsal methods and documentation strategies?

Itinerary: 11.30-12:20 Registration, lunch [ATRiuM, Mingle], One-to-one short Demo of Goodnight, Sleep Tight performance (first come first served) [ZEN Room] 12:20 Welcome 12:30 Keynote: Dr Jorge Lopes Ramos (executive director ZU-UK) 13:30 Dr Joseph Dunne-Howrie (research associate at ZU-UK Theatre and Digital Arts company), Post-Immersive Performance. Chair: Dr Christina Papagiannouli (University of South Wales) 13:50 Break 14:00 Empathy, Inclusiveness and Embodiment in Immersive technologies performance practices Eleni Kolliopoulou (Ulster University), Empathy and inclusiveness in immersive technologies: Sky-field 1&2. Dr Styliani Keramida (University of Reading), Performance, Immersive Technologies and Theatrical Aesthetics: Remediating video gaming technologies in the theatre in order to produce effects of empathy and inclusiveness.  Kerryn Wise (De Montfort University), DIS/PLACE. Chair: Dr Piotr Woycicki (Aberystwyth University) 15:15 Break 15:30 Immersive Storytelling and Dramaturgy: Immersive technologies as a Narrative Medium Dr Harry Robert Wilson (Digital Thinker in Residence, National Theatre of Scotland), Virtual Reality experiences as intimate performance.  Prof. Sophy Smith (DeMontfort University), Immersive Dance Practice and Storytelling – a transdisciplinary approach. Dr Piotr Woycicki (Aberystwyth University), Intermedial dramaturgies of flux in the AR version of Our Lady of Shadows. Chair: Dr Joanne Scott (University of Salford) 16:45-18:00 Launch and Wine reception Launch of Performance and VR Practice special issue, IJPADM. Wine reception and conversation with Dr Kerry Francksen and Prof. Sophy Smith (guest editors).

Interfaces: Digital Performers, Digital Experiences & Digitized Audiences

Date of Event: July 4, 2018 Event Type: Interim Event
TaPRA’s Performance and New Technologies Working Group proposes a day-long interim event on Wednesday4thJuly 2018 at Buckinghamshire New Universityin High Wycombe, interrogating different modes of interaction and intimacy between performers, technologies and audiences/participants. We are particularly interested in staging practice-led work proposing new strategies and sensibilities emerging through these interactions and invite performers / performance makers to stage intermedial work of 20-30 minutes duration that raises / examines / explores the following concepts, processes or themes:

  • live performance and augmented reality
  • live performance and virtual reality
  • interactive performers / interactive audience
  • bodies enhanced by data, traceable and augmented by computation and bio-technology
  • narrative possibilities created by digital technology
  • networked interactive performances
  • point to point streamed performance
  • App performances / social media performances
  • the virtual body and its images
  • performances drawing on digital codification, appropriation, work & task
  • headphone theatre and podcasts
  • GPS enabled performance / mobile phone performance
  • Psychasthenic performance (challenging embodied / representational space)
  • digital palimpsests and perpetual mutations
  • digital mnemotechnics / nostalgias
  • embedded digital experiences and spaces of culture / heritage / the personal
This is a one-day event, with tea/coffee and lunch included and all participants must be TaPRA members. If you are not currently a member, you will be asked to join the organization at the interim rate of £10 beforethe date of the event. Please submit a 300 word abstract, outlining your proposed contribution to the day, alongside an indication of your technical requirements and set up needs, and a short biographical statement to Jem Kelly – Jem.Kelly@Bucks.ac.uk Christina Papagiannouli – christina.papagiannouli@southwales.ac.uk Jo Scott – j.e.scott@salford.ac.uk. The deadline for the submission of proposals is Friday 8th June We also have £50 travel bursaries to facilitate postgraduate and non-affiliated artists/researchers attending this interim event, so please note on your proposal if you would like to be considered for a travel bursary.

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