Театр со-участников

#08- 32: Театр со-участников

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Дмитрий Виленский /// Введение

Любую ситуацию человеческих отношений всегда можно редуцировать к простым оппозициям начальник/подчиненный, друг/враг; учитель/ученик; актер/зритель; класс/партия; знающий/незнающий; представитель/народ; угнетатель/угнетенный; мужчина/женщина; богатый/бедный итд. В тоже время, очевидно, что динамика отношений не описывается подобными статичными противостояниями, и что участие в производственных отношениях, процессы политической и художественной репрезентации, ситуация обучения вовлекают их участников в сложные процессы взаимодействия, когда изначально фиксированные роли меняются, постоянно возникают непрогнозируемые ситуации – то есть всё находиться в живом состоянии обмена и трансформации. Собственно поиск некого органического единства между артикулироваными оппозициями и есть основа любого политического процесса. Так как (если убрать некоторые нюансы) на кону в анализе этих оппозиций всегда стоит собственно переопределение равенства.


Ultra-red // Art, Collectivity, and Pedagogy: Changing the World in which we Live

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The art world is going through a period of intense fascination with collectives. This is often combined with an enthusiastic interest in pedagogy. Curators, critics and institutions champion collectivity and pedagogy as, among other things, an alternative or corrective, if you will, to the art-star economy of the 1990s and its spectacular demise. These recent interests have benefited from the enormous influence of the French philosopher, Jacques Ranciиre. Seeking an explicitly political inflection in the terms of pedagogy and collectivity, many have turned to Ranciиre’s writings on spectatorship and the emancipatory potential in art. This appropriation in the visual art context has tended to ignore the extent to which Ranciиre’s own thinking occurs within a nexus of pedagogy and the collectivities that occur in performance. Returning to that nexus affords us the opportunity to tease out some of the implications in this shift from the image as teleology to a performative scene of reception.

As we move through yet another financial collapse, we find the focus on collectivity and pedagogy also playing out against the very real politics of a so-called “crisis in education.” This is not only about money. The changes governments are making to curriculums, staffing and financial-support programs signal fundamental shifts in understanding of the social function of education. The long-standing alliance between the art world and the education system, underscored in state policy, bureaucracy and funding mechanisms, means the crisis in education is also a crisis for the arts. Recent waves of protest against cuts to arts and education programs further underscore this alliance. The meeting point between education and art remains a site for democratic struggle. But what are the terms and methods of that struggle now? It is certainly worth taking the time to investigate whether there is something in the conjunction of collectivity and pedagogy in the art world that can help us navigate, perhaps even inform, the changes being made to this world in which we live. These brief notes are a modest contribution to that investigation.


Luis Ignacio Garcha /// Bertolt Brecht, ignorant master

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Aside from this original stamp, the learning-plays proved highly controversial because of the austerity of their form and the disconcerting nature of their content. Conceived as a means for collective experimentation, the learning plays set up a laboratory-type situation based on a radical reduction of stage and theatrical resources. Brecht, an admirer of Japanese no theater, developed a radical economy of resources that was not primarily intended to express desolation, meaningless or the dehumanization of man (as in Beckett), but rather to set up the conditions that would allow more malleable manipulation of the stage situation. Like scientists engaged in the experimental formulation of a scientific law, the idea is to get rid of incidental details and set up an abstract situation that brings out the elements in their pure forms. This economy of elements seeks to reduce the exhibition value and emphasize the use value of the piece, to offer up the work as a device that can be manipulated. Brecht said: “The form of the learning-play is stringent, however only so that individual inventions and innovations can be easily adapted into the play.”[1] It should be noted that austerity was a way of attacking the “fourth wall,” not to йpater le bourgeois, but to clear the way for a dynamic based on participatory action. Nevertheless, the austere style of the learning plays was seen as an extension of the avant-garde principle of alienation, an appendix to the Verfremdung-effekt (estrangement)of epic theater, rather than as a didactic commitment to opening up to the active collaboration of participants. Brecht’s reception saw the avant-garde rather than the revolutionary pedagogy; it saw the formal experimentalism rather than the research laboratory.


Fernanda Carvajal /// Public Theater: educational pieces to assemble

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During the long and still unfinished post-dictatorship in Chile, in which four governments from a social democratic coalition provide consistency and continuity to the knotting between modernization, neoliberalism and progress forged by the dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, the Chilean theater undergoes major transformations. In the period from 1990 to 2010, a professional kind of theater is strengthened, retreated into a rather self-referential practice, mainly funded by the state competitive funding system which limits its scope to academic spaces and independent theaters with a restricted public, tending to form a system that closes up upon itself This tendency has contributed to relegate to the margins, to invisibility or silence, other theatrical experiences that seek to open out different paths from the theater towards other areas of the social or political. Still, the last few years, and perhaps underpinned by the strong rejection to the recent victory of a rightist government in the country, these previously dispersed experiences, have leaned to congregate and strengthen. They are theater companies that come from different cities of the country – Teatro Pъblico (Public Theater) and Teatro Versiуn Oficial (Official Version Theater) in Santiago, Teatro La Peste (The Plague Theater) in Valparaiso, Teatropello in Talca, to name a few- which, coming in and out of the professional theater circuit, have joined different social and political groups simultaneously, and have been involved in specific social conflicts and struggles They are still incipient but decisive gestures that re-build bridges between theater and politics.

In this context, this text seeks to problematize the relationships between pedagogy and political emancipation put in practice by the Public Theater collective [1]. It is still a very recent experience, so we cannot yet discern its effects and continuities; however, we think this text as a contribution to the discussion and support of these initiatives.


Katja Praznik /// Theatre, Emancipation and Political Power: Two Cases From the Past

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The emancipatory function of theater in the territory of ex-Yugoslavia has some specific traits. Since the falling apart of Yugoslavia, or better, of self-managing socialism, things have taken a turn. However, let me first dwell in the past in order to make my argument.

While the official culture and the network of institutional theatres in Slovenia (one of the six republics of the ex-Yugoslavia) had the role of mirroring the political and social values of the Yugoslav self-managing socialism,[1] there were a number of professionals who organized themselves outside the context of the official culture.[2] Theatre institutions, along with the Academy for Theater, Film, Radio and Television, represented the dominant structure in control of the production, distribution and education of theatre in the Slovenia, in which theatre was predominantly understood as drama theatre and where the literary text played the starring role. This was not at all a coincidence, as language and literature were the bearers of national identity; therefore, the theatres were one of the main fortresses enforcing this identity. Despite the monopoly over theater culture, this system had a certain amount of tolerance, which allowed deviations in order to sustain the image of tolerance. Between the late 1950s and the 1990s, we therefore witnessed the emergence of a number of experimental groups and alternative theater and dance groups in Slovenia.[3]


Кети Чухров /// Передвижной театр Коммуниста: Манифест

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Первая публикация этого материала – Транслит #5 (2009)


Недавно ко мне пришло ясное понимание того, что искусство не может не быть коммунистическим. Это вовсе не проявление идеологии, как кажется некоторым. Это также не догмат. Просто вдруг стало очевидным, что все искусство — от Древней Греции до сегодняшнего дня — то искусство, которое преодолело в себе эгоизм и самомнение — содержит в себе потенциальность коммунистического. Независимо от его пессимизма или оптимизма, такое искусство посвящено не какому-то кругу общества, но всем вместе и каждому по отдельности. Это не какая-то пропагандистская хитрость. Так получается у художника, искусство которого не боится людей. Ведь часто искусство либо боится потерять себя среди черни, либо, наоборот, пытается быть искусственно популистским, чтобы его не заподозрили в знании или искусности, либо направлено узкому кругу тонких знатоков и профессионалов. Когда я говорю коммунистический, то, конечно, имею в виду не принадлежность к партии, а мировоззрение. Именно эта мировоззренческая широта, превышающая границы одного государства, нации, класса, художественной школы, частные или даже духовные интересы конкретного индивида, предполагает потенциальность коммунистического в художественной работе.


From Spunk Library, The Anarchist Archive

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Inspired by filmmaker Akira Kurosawa’s study in multiple perspectives, Rashomon is an improvisatory technique that highlights the role of perception in the creation of the “Other.” Rashomon is specifically designed for the study of the rigid patterns of perception that create a negatively-charged Other, in an oppressive, closed, recurring situation; as such, it is particularly suited for exploring the role of individual perception in generating biases and hate.


1) Workshop members are asked to volunteer to tell the story of an incident of oppression that has happened to them, and that is likely to recur. The situation must involve well-established, antagonistic relations with others. The oppression is experienced by the narrator, or protagonist, as an impasse; it results from the objective interaction of people situated in a circular, conflictual social setting.

2) When all the stories have been heard, the group votes and chooses the story that has evoked the greatest collective resonance. The protagonist of the featured story then chooses fellow participants to play the other characters of the story, and together they improvise the scene.


Some more articles on theatre

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There are no translations available.


Adorno// Commitment

A Baraka// Slave Ship

Baraka,James Hatch// Afro-American Revolutionary Theater

Brecht// Sports,Epic,et al

J Butler// Performative Acts

H Cruse// Revolutionary Nationalism

Dixon// DigitalPerformance

E Diamond// Intro.Performance, Cultural Politics

F Fanon// Fact of Blackness

Coco Fusco// The Other History of Intercultural Performance

Genet // A Note on Theater

Muller// Hamletmachine

M Pearson// Theatre/ Archaeology

P Phelan// Ontology of Theatre

Roach// Kinship.Performance.NewOrleans

Schechner// Theater and Anthropology

Situationists// SimonFord

Taylor// Performance Archive

Taylor // The art and the repertoire

V Turner //Ritual to Performance

White // Genet Biography