Durational Performance from 2:00 – 8:00 pm (come and go as you please)
Click HERE to make a free reservation (required).
Watermill Tour at 2pm – then stay for the performance
Click HERE to make a reservation for the tour.
Please join us at The Watermill Center for a durational performance by New York City based performance group Temporary Distortion in residence now working on their new piece, MY VOICE HAS AN ECHO IN IT. A six-hour durational and installation-based performance with live music, text. and video, this presentation will be the first time the group will perform all six hours of their materials before they tour the work in France later this year. The work will be presented in a unique, site-specific installation at Watermill surrounded by pieces from The Watermill Collection.
Come for a tour of The Watermill Center building and grounds at 2pm and stay for the performance. A reception will take place throughout the day so that the audience will have the chance to come and go during the six-hour performance.
About The Work
MY VOICE HAS AN ECHO IN IT is a six-hour, installation-based, durational performance with live music, text, and video, unfolding in a fully enclosed 24′ x 6′ hallway. All performers are completely confined within a freestanding, soundproof box. Spectators watch the performance through two-way mirrors lining the 24′ long walls. While the audience can see inside the box, the performer sees only his reflection, stretching off infinitely in both directions. Viewers are free to come and go throughout the six-hour duration of the event. (Digital renderings and images will be on display during the February 22 event at Watermill)
The audience listens to the performance through headphones stationed along the windows. Twenty-four sets of headphones are available at a time—twelve on each side—for listening to the performance. All of the instruments (including the drums) are electric and plugged directly into a mixing board. The audio signal is sent straight to the headphones. No additional amplification is employed, although speakers outside the box play prerecorded ambient music for those waiting.
A common assumption regarding live performance is that the audience is able to share a unique moment in time with the performer; however, this relationship is complicated in MY VOICE HAS AN ECHO IN IT by the introduction of a deliberate delay in the audio feed received by the listener. This brief intervention calls into question the very liveness of the event, since all sounds created by the performers are first captured, processed, and stored by a computer before being played back for the audience an instant later—technically creating a prerecorded event. This delay purposefully throws the viewer out of sync with the performance and emphasizes an ephemerality that can otherwise be taken for granted. It places an empty moment between action and reception—a moment accessible to neither the performer nor the viewer. This moment of delay is a gap. It is a blank space. It is continually present, yet completely elusive, fleeting, and unattainable.
About Temporary Distortion
The signature style of Temporary Distortion’s work includes: meditative performances staged in claustrophobic, boxlike structures; a uniquely restrained style of acting with little physical movement; and the creation of sensual and dreamlike double worlds, achieved through a juxtaposition of recorded video and live performance.
In each piece, an immersive, boxlike structure appears as a framing device. While multiple performers often inhabit a sculpture together, they never make eye contact, never touch, and barely move. They behave instead as parts of a singular, time-based assemblage.
Temporary Distortion is based in New York City, where its work has been presented at The Baryshnikov Arts Center, The Chocolate Factory, The Ontological-Hysteric Theater and Performance Space 122.
The Company’s work has also been presented internationally at: Brisbane Powerhouse (Brisbane, AU), Exit Festival (Paris, FR), Gare Saint-Sauveur (Lille, FR), LiFE (Saint-Nazaire, FR), Mois Multi (Quebec City, CA), On the Boards (Seattle, WA), Prague Quadrennial (Prague, CZ), Salzburg Festival (Salzburg, AT), SPAC (Shizuoka, JP), Théâtre de l’Agora (Évry, FR), Théâtre Garonne (Toulouse, FR), Theatre Junction (Calgary, CA), Theatre National de Toulouse (Toulouse, FR), Trafó (Budapest, HU), Usine-C (Montreal, CA), and Via Festival (Maubeuge, FR).
Articles discussing Temporary Distortion’s work have been published in Contemporary Theatre Review, The Drama Review, The New York Times, TheatreForum, Live Design, Real Time Arts, and The Brooklyn Rail, with an upcoming profile in Chance Magazine.
This project has been commissioned by EMPAC / Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY. Composer Commission awarded by the New York State Council on the Arts. Additional support from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.
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39 Watermill Towd Road
Water Mill, NY 11976 United States