Inspired by Franz Kafka’s novel Die Verwandlung, Scarecrow Contemporary Dance Company artistic director and choreographer Wen-jinn Luo collaborated with award-winning media artist Lien-cheng Wang and Australian sound artist Nigel Brown to create the dance work “The Bug” combining movement, digital technology, sound, art installation, and site-specific performance. Through the physical connection between a dancer and two mechanical bugs, the work reveals the essence of meaning and value in human existence. The negative impressions and influences of a "bug" on our sensory and psychological being are analyzed to uncover the deep fears inside our hearts.
稻草人現代舞蹈團/Scarecrow Contemporary Dance Company
Director/Producer: Wen-Chun Lo
Artistic Director/Choreographer/Performer: Wen-Jinn Luo
New Media Artist: Lien-Cheng Wang
Sound Artist: Nigel Brown
Lighting Designer: Wen-Ming Wang
Stage Manager: Shu-Ling Kuo
Costume Designer: Chih-Yang Huang
Rehearsal Assistant: Chia-Yu Ho
Administrative Manager: Meng-Chun Wu
Photographer: Chen-Hsuan Wu
Graphic Designer: Winder Chen
非人與科技的交互感應《虫》- 徐瑋瑩, 2018/12/16
Notes on the sound design:
To give voice to the arduino controlled robotic bugs created by Lien-Cheng Wang, in the first development of the project I created simple motor-driven hurdy gurdies that could be mounted on their backs. Thanks to Lien-Cheng’s programming, the driving wheel could be alternatively controlled by sensors attached to the dancer, Wen-Jinn Luo, or by MIDI controller. A range of timbres and effects could be achieved through simple speed control and varying from smooth through pulsing wheel movement.
The first development was presented at Ten Drum Culture Village in Tainan in December 2018. We are undertaking a second technical development in 2019 in which I plan to add real-time pitch control and more radical timbre manipulation possibilities to the instruments. The eventual plan is to produce a large number of the ‘bugs’ and have their acoustic voices create the majority of the sound for the show.
Sound creates movement, movement creates sound: when the resonant frequency of a thing, system, or even a person is reached, it sings in sympathy. When the amplitude is too great, it breaks. Tremor is kinetic sculpture, musical instrument and dance performance combined: touch, vibration, perception and motion are at the core of the work. It’s a seismic movement, a physical manifestation of trauma, an attempt to heal. It’s an overflow of pressure – on the body and on the planet.
Lead Artist Ashley Dyer
Sound Designer Nigel Brown
Principal Dancer Kristy Ayre
Dancers Nat Cursio and Jo White
Set Design Jason Lehane
Lighting Design Travis Hodgson
Production Management The Rubix Cube
Performer/Assistant Lindsay Templeton
Performer/Assistant James Hogan
Associate Producer Kristina Arnott
Green Room Award for Design (Contemporary & Experimental Performance)
Aftershock - Gracia Haby, Fjord Review, November 2016
Tremor review: Ashley Dyer's oscillating dance work keeps audience in suspended state of anticipation - Jordan Beth Vincent, Sydney Morning Herald, 17 November 2016
Shake the disease: Ashley Dyer’s Tremor - Paul Ransom, Dance Informa, November 2016
Sand to stone, lava to rock, fossil to fuel. Shifting Ground is a performance installation that explores the idea that all forms are temporal and metamorphic. This intimate work unites gestural choreography, ceremonial participation, object manipulation, physicalised sound and interactive projection mapping to illuminate the symbiotic relationship humans have with the geological environment.
Concept, Performer, Video - Zoe Scoglio
Sound - Nigel Brown
Prop Design - Zoe Stuart
Interaction Design - Chris Heywood
Producer - Briony Galligan
Outside Eye – Helen Herbertson
Management - Moriarty's Project Inc
Shifting Ground was developed with support from the Australia Council for the Arts Jump Program and Music Board and the City of Melbourne through Arts House Culture Lab
2012 Green Room Award Recipient, Outstanding Production, Alternative and Hybrid Performance category
Music Theatre NOW Winning Production, Rotterdam, 2015
Hot: New Dance and Performance From Australia
“Shifting Ground may not only be the most intimate, but perhaps also the most powerful project in this year’s Music Theatre Now selection. Zoe Scoglio has created a magical universe with limited elements like gravel, stones and pebbles, while the audience sits close to the intriguing action. Scoglio’s message is clear: even if we are mortal, the world keeps turning and evolving. Yet the question remains: how do we relate to our environment? Within a very poetic context, Scoglio raises contemporary issues. The jury was blown away by this intimate portrait.” – MTN Jury 2015
The Scotsman - Kirstin Innes ****
Herald Scotland - Mary Brennan
Real Time - Varia Karipoff
Heavy Petting - Camryn Rothenbury
Stage Whispers - Suzanne Sandow
Arts House Newsletter - Urzula Dawkins
The Age - Jordan Beth Vincent
Please make contact for links to video documentation
Documentation images by John Possemato, Ana Tiquia, Chris Heywood and Nigel Brown
Documentation footage by NON
Notes on the sound design:
Shifting Ground underwent three development periods with the creative team. The outcome of the first was a work-in-progress presentation in Zoe’s living room; the domestic setting being an integral part of the construction of the work and the audience experience.
A second development funded by the Australia Council Music Board focussed the relationship of sound to the other elements of the work; performative, physical and interactive. Tactile transducers of various kinds were used in developing a ‘vibration table’ for creating cymatics, ‘singing rocks’ for immersive sound installation within set design, and approaches to activating architecture through subsonics.
The final on-site development through Culture Lab at Arts House Studio B saw all of the previously explored ideas refined into a 14-channel installation environment. Lavalier and contact microphones were used to feed live sound from the performance to an Audio Mulch patch for real-time processing and redistribution through the sound system.
League of Resonance
The League of Resonance seeks out the intangible and barely perceptible. We detect vibrations that form the backdrop to the mythical narrative of daily life. We situate ourselves in places of intrigue, we listen, we talk, we connect and we hum. In collecting and combining the resonance of individuals: their stories, perceptions and rituals, we unravel the backdrop to this myth. Together we create a new sound. This sound is The League of Resonance.
Project Artists: Sarah Rodigari, Jason Maling, Jess Olivieri
Producer: Jane Smith
Sound Designer: Nigel Brown
Graphic Designer: Julie De Paoli
A League of Resonance Production in Co-production with The City of Melbourne Arts and Participation
Notes on the sound design:
The League of Resonance project got me on board to help create the ‘resonant signature’ of each newly inducted League member. After returning from a guided walk around the League site in the Melbourne CBD, new members were asked to enter a photo booth at Flinders Street Station. Handed a simple recording device as they entered, inductees were requested to ponder the stories and places shared on their tour and hum whatever came into their head as their photo was taken.
From these collected recordings I went mining for a short loop to represent each individual’s place in the League. At the culmination of the project these ‘resonant frequencies’ were published on a CD as part of the Swap Meet kit. The Swat Meet was an opportunity for the whole League to come together. Attendees were issued with a Swap Meet kit and a set of swap cards to be traded with other members to obtain a full set. The Resonant Hum CD was presented on multiple CD players with headphones throughout the meeting space with individual tracks on loop. As attendees collected member cards they were able to match up individuals with their corresponding Resonant Hum.