Comment

Elizabeth Stewart Discussion

Posted

Transcript of an interview/discussion between Barry Edwards and Elizabeth Stewart.   Stewart: Looking at notes made after seeing Second Spectacle, I postulated that the piece was built up from a basic story but with crucial things removed. When I asked you about this afterwards, you said that this made the structure less specific and allowed a wider range of possible associations. There are several points to raise here, but first of all, what did you mean by a range of associations?   Edwards: The question of the story line is rather crucial, because one of the basic impulses behind this particular work was to bring the narrative and the visual modes of working...

Read More

Meditations on Space

Posted

Meditations on Space: Talking to Optik Author: Jackie Smart   This article first appeared in BST Journal Early this year, I spent some time with Optik while they were creating their production Space for the Camden Centre, a large Art Deco civic hall. Performed on 18th and 19th February, Space involved 6 performers (the largest number in an Optik production to date) working with a sound and a video artist. Given that Optik’s work is improvisatory and relies very heavily on the performers’ interactions, the space I was particularly interested in exploring was that between the performers themselves. I hoped to discover more about the company’s creative process...

Read More

Sighted Commentary

Posted

Transcript of a discussion with a student group after a performance of Short Sighted. October 1982   Q: Where does the idea for a piece come from?   BE: That’s a good place to start. I bring a set of stimuli to the early rehearsal and we have discussions about the new piece. For One Spectacle I used a folk tale from the Chinese called The Two Travellers and one song from a Schumann song cycle. In Second Spectacle, to contrast with the mood and imagery of our first piece, I turned to the early 20th century, the Futurists and Mahler and so at the outset of our work on Short Sighted I introduced two contrasting artefacts based on notions of love; Beaumarchais’...

Read More

Presence Review

Posted

Performance Research Journal Routledge January 2004 Moving Bodies Issue A moving meditation on a dead line Tracey Warr   interrupted. All the time and eventually irretrievably. Although Bataille sees life disrupting the continuity of death. Continuity and/or caesura. Moving and stopping.   Moving. Going. In October 2001 I went with UK performance group, Optik, to Sao Paulo, Brazil (Edwards, 2003). Optik explore moving. And walking running colliding rocking falling rolling laying standing sitting seeing looking listening feeling focusing waiting deciding being stopping.   Walking. Taking a line for a walk. The three Optik performers walk and run in straight...

Read More

Optik in Egypt

Posted

Optik in Egypt Paul Allain interviews Barry Edwards     Edwards: Our visit to Egypt came in between our tours of Poland and Germany and included a the major event, a big outdoor performance in Damanhur, Alexandria. Our work had been geared towards Europe, particularly Eastern Europe and this was the very first experience, certainly for me, of going somewhere completely outside of the European tradition. Our first reaction was to the environmental change i.e. towns, villages and cities were not organised in the same way as in Eastern Europe with its Communist footprints. An immediate sense of change came also from the noise, the population difference and the...

Read More

Jack Brook in Discussion

Posted

PROCESSES OF SIGNIFICANCE: SCALE, SYSTEM and SINGULARITY The Work of the OPTIK Performance Company JACK BROOK in discussion with BARRY EDWARDS   PART ONE: OPTIK in performance: two written responses   1 Jack Brook   A marvelously ambiguous but tight and very assured piece. It works because it doesn’t use any movement that lifts it into specialist discourses. Clearly the training and the technique is sharp: the way the performers feed lines to each other, stop dear, wheel round when paths cross, drop out of the mayhem and catch breath or sulk silently: the way they orchestrate the textures of silence, regular advance and manic hyperactivity is an absolute...

Read More