"Turn off the house lights" a midnight transmission

"Turn off the house lights" a midnight transmission is an audio dance performance. Frederic Church's painting of Mt. Cotopaxi and Mt. Fuji's portraits found in many Japanese public bathhouses were our starting point. The depiction of the mountains often shows an idealized version of the landscape. In those paintings, the strength of the mountain is mystified and the administration of/for nature is forgotten. We hypothesized that the fact that humans depict idealized landscape on their own allows us to fantasize about non-human dances. And we thought that this non-human dances should be a reconsideration of the original behavior of nature, despite the fact that it is created by human delusion.

Shuntaro welcomed the Berlin participants in the garden of the Cordillera dance studio. Alex and Catalina prepared canelazos for them. Added uchuvas from their garden, bits of lulo and passion fruit. The aguardiente we used was brought to the old continent by Catalina's Sister. At the performance time, she was listening from Bogota, Colombia. Catalina was controlling the live stream and composing the live soundscape we experienced. The Berlin participants look out over the garden. At the same time, audiences from Tokyo are sitting by the window of their houses or in their beds, looking out at the midnight view. Mapped tells a story they learned from a tree doctor about cherry trees dancing and one of Tokyo's beloved landscapes. Cherry trees extend down  toward the river to collect the light reflected on the surface of the water. The audiences are invited to witness the dance of the trees by hearing their movements, imagining them, and superimposing them on the landscape in front of them. The story deconstructs the picture of an idealized mountain landscape and the sight we see with our eyes. 

Moreover, participants see a performer listening to the story reorganizing a landscape composed of the earth beings that inhabit the Cordillera garden in tandem with a meditative traversal of the garden at Cordillera, Cotopaxi, Mt. Fuji and the related Koto-ku in Berlin. They witness actual landscapes that accumulate from their relationships with earth beings, such as moss, trees, stones, dead leaves, etc. Installation of live materials and objects inspired by the story affects their experience evoking different emotions and distances with the geo/ecological scales. 

Multiple layers of time and space in these landscapes also have an online audience. One online audience gives us the feedback: “even though Kraków and Berlin are close enough to be in the same time zone, expecting that Berlin sunset made me conscious that my sunset here, a few hundred kilometers to the southeast, was due just a few minutes before yours. There's something quite inspiring about being reminded of our place in celestial geometry.” 

This sound-performative practice seems to definitely offer us collective choreography including nature. These choreographies care for the rest of the online audience's experience that might get lost in the move online after the pandemic.