TWR007 - Proto-Knowledge (with Christian Grüny)

(recorded on April 9, 2020)


CHRISTIAN GRÜNY
studied philosophy and linguistics in Bochum, Prague and Berlin, got his PhD in Bochum and his postdoctoral qualification (Habilitation) at Witten/Herdecke. His background in the philosophy of Theodor W. Adorno an in phenomenology led him into two directions: on the one hand towards a phenomenology of pain and the problems of violence and torture, on the other hand towards aesthetics and the philosophy of music which remains his main field of research until today. grueny.info

(The picture of the episode is from Christian’s website.)

You could have guessed from the first episode on: Marije and Simon have an inclination towards “hammer philosophy”, indulging in their proto-knowledge. That’s one of the reasons why we are very happy about today’s guest.

With philosopher Christian Grüny we practice “fabrication of thoughts while talking”, following our associations on performance, philosophy, thinking as practice, (re)presentation and much more.

We shortly present Christian to our listeners and speak about his work, especially about his work as performer** and about lecture performances in general – from this we drift into reflections about the relation between representing and presenting, talking, writing, performing, academics and artists – about form and content and how they inform each other, about artistic strategies, academic realities, and if there is something like artistic research.

Surprisingly we have a lot of fun! Maybe due to Beckett staying with us in the background, smoking and laughing.


**We speak about Christian’s performances: “The Gesture of the Form”, especially from minute 17:00 and Resonanz und Wiederholung

Simons microphone sounds very crappy throughout the whole episode, sorry for that.


We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment below. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR006 - Future Experiments (with André Erlen)

(recorded on April 6, 2020)*


André Erlen

ANDRÉ ERLEN (Cologne, DE)
is one of four Artistic Directors of Futur3 – a theatre group he co-founded in 2003.

He studied Art at the Art Academy in Düsseldorf, while training as actor and discovering the vivid theatre world in Poland.

With André we speak about his work, his beginnings in the theatre, founding Futur3, performing outside of theatre buildings, about Cologne, scenography, light, space and the relation to the spectator. We speak about Polish theatre, about the Art world and not liking Premiere parties & Vernissages.

We speak about Theatre which always vanishes and strategies to react to this. We speak about streaming theatre and why it does not work, about the necessity of translation, acting in virtual reality, games, shows without actors. We speak about truth and lies in the actor’s craft, the necessity of being in charge of the situation and much more…

*Marije’s microphone sound quite bad in the first 10 min., then it gets better

  1. There is a guest: André Erlen 00:00
  2. How are your days at the moment? 01:18
  3. André and his theatre: Futur3 04:50
  4. Performing outside of Theatres 08:35
  5. Being a Theatre Group in Cologne 14:40
  6. Example: “A Night in Afghanistan” 21:36
  7. Working with space, audience & light 27:20
  8. Scenography 30:42
  9. Light 33:58
  10. A Lot of Questions 38:57
  11. How André began 41:02
  12. Polish Theatre & Art Academy Düsseldorf 43:11
  13. Disgusted by the “Art World” 46:10
  14. Theatre always disappeares 47:49
  15. Translating Theatre into other Media 50:54
  16. Streaming Theatre vs Theatre Games 52:46
  17. Audience as Performers 57:19
  18. Duchamps´ Portable Museums 01:01:31
  19. Paradoxes of Digital Space 01:02:57
  20. Acting in Virtual Reality 01:05:19
  21. Acting: Truth, Lie, Necessity, Coherence 01:11:50
  22. Thank you & Goodbye 01:17:08

We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment below. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR005 - On Training (with Adriana La Selva)

(recorded on March 31, 2020)

ADRIANA LA SELVA
is a theatre maker, a performer, a networker and a researcher. Adriana is working on a practice-based Ph.D. at the University of Ghent in Belgium, in association with the School of Arts (KASK), where she is investigating contemporary performer training processes in relation to politics of embodied research. She has been a member of the international theatre group The Bridge of Winds since 2015, led by Odin Teatret actress Iben Nagel Rasmussen. In 2017 Adriana co-founded the Cross Pollination Research Platform together with Marije Nie, an international network of performers and researchers, which focuses on the dialogue in-between practices of art, community building and academic research. 

With Adriana we speak about training, heritage, etymology, legal issues and training as a resistance and a way to be present. We also talk about her PhD research entitled ‘What Are You Training For?’

  1. There is a guest: Adriana La Selva 00:00
  2. How are your days? Homeschooling during Corona-Crisis 01:24
  3. Building routines to survive 05:22
  4. Practice as understanding: Archimedean point 11:40
  5. Small Detour: Property, Heritage, Justice 15:51
  6. Cultural Heritage & Practices 22:14
  7. Simon asks Adriana everything at once 26:38
  8. First meeting with theatre: Entertainment 28:47
  9. Etymology again 32:28
  10. Falling in love with training 37:04
  11. Changes in Training 45:47
  12. Monsters, Technology 59:16
  13. Environment & Ecology 01:01:35
  14. Ethos 01:03:47
  15. Example of Technique: The Wind Dance 01:05:40
  16. Training as resistance and a way to be present 01:09:36
  17. Conclusion: Never waste a good question! 01:20:42

We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment below. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR004 - Rhythm Part I: Three Giants Dancing (Around the Fire)

(recorded on April 4, 2020)

THE WHITE ROOM CHAPTER 4

WHICH TREATS OF MANY AND GREAT MATTERS and
IN WHICH IS CONTAINED THE DELIGHT WHICH THE TWO HOSTS EXPERIENCED IN TRYING TO UNDERSTAND “RHYTHM”

We meet again in the white room; this time we bring a topic which interests both Marije and Simon very much and which is one of reasons of having started these conversations – a basic element of performance: Rhythm.

Before diving into it we react to a comment that we received, one part of which provokes us to speak at length about the current situation and how theatre artists react to it by creating a lot of digital content, which is both great and strange. We look at the musician Nick Cave’s reaction to the crisis and refuse to come to a judgement of either way.

Rhythm Part I : We start with some definitions of Rhythm, about why we wanted to talk about Rhythm in the first place – and discover that Rhythm is a powerful tool, which like every tool can be used for various purposes.

Marije brings clips of Music that we listen to and compare (no copyright infringement intended!):
Rhythm is a Dancer by Austin/Benites/Butler/Garrett
Money Jungle by Ellington/Mingus/Roach
Country Preacher and Walk Tall by Cannonball Adderley
Grandma’s Hands by Bill Withers
Wise One and Leo by John Coltrane
Les Filles de Cadix, interpreted by Renée Fleming
A recording from Marije of the Balinese group Cudamani


We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment below. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR003 - Theatre in times of Covid-19 (with Per Kap Bech Jensen)

(recorded on March 28, 2020)

PER KAP BECH JENSEN
is administrative director of Nordisk Teaterlaboratorium – Odin Teatret since 2014. In January 2021 he will move to be Director of the theatre.

Odin Teatret was created in Oslo, Norway, in 1964, and moved to Holstebro (Denmark) in 1966, changing its name to Nordisk Teaterlaboratorium – Odin Teatret. Today, its 40 members come from a eleven countries and four continents.

With Per we speak about his beginnings in the theatre, about the work of the dramaturg and about what the current crisis means for a theatre that performs around the world and is home to artists from various countries, a theatre which is based on the presence and relation of actor and spectator.


We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment here on the website. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR002 - Beginner's Heart

(recorded March 25, 2020)

THE WHITE ROOM CHAPTER 2

IN WHICH IS CONTINUED THE ADVENTURE OF THE PODCAST and
OF WHAT HAPPENED TO THE TWO HOSTS IN THE VIRTUAL SPACE WHICH THEY TOOK TO BE A WHITE ROOM and
IN WHICH ARE CONTAINED THE INNUMERABLE TROUBLES WHICH THE TWO PROMISING PODCASTERS ENDURED IN TRYING TO UNDERSTAND THE “HEART OF THE BEGINNING”

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities. In the expert’s mind there are few.”


Shunryu Suzuku: Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind. Boston 2006

We sit down and want to speak about our beginnings in the theatre. Instead we drift into a long reflection about what it means to begin, what it means to be a beginner, what it means to be an expert, and if you can be both at the same time. 

We speak about Groove, the paradox of repeated improvisation and young vs. old musicians.

We listen to a small part of a lecture of Orson Welles in Paris, in which he narrates his first days on a movie set. 

We discover that the work of the actor/performer is quite particular in the relation of skill, knowledge, ignorance and the demand of delivering every performance as if it were the very first.


NOTES: We are starting this project from scratch. There are still technical issues to be solved, which is noticeable in the sound. Learning by doing, we will try to improve with every episode. Beyond the technical issues we have to note that we’re not native english nor radio speakers. Through habit we will hopefully get into the flow of speaking, but you will have to cope with some “eh”s and “mhm”s sometimes.

We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. You can also comment below. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small regular contribution already makes a big difference.

TWR001 - Whereof one cannot speak...

(recorded on March 22, 2020)

THE WHITE ROOM CHAPTER 1

WHICH TREATS OF THE CHARACTER AND PURSUITS OF THE TWO HOSTS MARIJE THE TAP DANCER AND SIMON THE ACTOR
OF WHAT HAPPENED TO OUR HOSTS WHEN THEY LEFT THE STRAIGHT ARGUMENT FOR FOOLHARDY ASSOCIATIONS and
WHEREIN IS RELATED THE DROLL WAY IN WHICH THE TWO THOUGHT THEMSELVES PHILOSOPHERS and
OF THE GOOD FORTUNE WHICH THE VALIANT TAP DANCER HAD IN THE TERRIBLE AND UNDREAMT-OF ADVENTURE OF THE DESERT (containing nudity), WITH OTHER OCCURRENCES WORTHY TO BE FITLY RECORDED and
OF THE PLEASANT DISCOURSE THAT PASSED BETWEEN THEM

“Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.” Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus

What are we going to talk about? Why are we going to speak about what we’re going to speak about? Why are we making a podcast about theatre? Why even talk about theatre? Conversations on theatre? Or on performance? Or on practice?

We sit down together in the white room, trying to figure out what this is all about, evoking and struggling with the power of the words. In the effort to convey this to you and to ourselves, unreckoned help approaches through a famous quote by the famous Ludwig Wittgenstein. As the poet says: “… where the danger is, also grows the saving power.”

Marije quotes a passage from the book “The Encyclopedia of Trouble and Spaciousness” by Rebecca Solnit.

“That thing we call place is the intersection of many changing forces passing through, whirling around, mixing, dissolving, and exploding in a fixed location. To write about a place is to acknowledge that phenomena often treated separatedly – ecology, democracy, culture, storytelling, urban design, individual life histories and collective endeavors – coexist. They coexist geographically, spatially, in place, and to understand a place is to engage with braided narratives and sui generis explorations. […]”

Following that we discover that we speak from a certain place and perspective, not abstractly.

Simon quotes a jazz standard by Duke Ellington:

“It don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swing
Makes no difference if it’s sweet or hot
Give that rhythm everything you’ve got”

In the end we listen to a short clip of Eugenio Barba from Odin Teatret (DK) speaking about theatre in the current crisis.


NOTES: We are starting this project from scratch. There are still technical issues to be solved, which is noticeable in the sound. Learning by doing, we will try to improve with every episode. In this we rely heavily on the efforts made by great developers in the podcasting community (especially in Germany, hello Sendegate!), that brought us such fantastic tools as Podlove, Ultraschall and a lot of help and tutorials. Thanks to these efforts virtually everybody can make decent podcasts (#gopodcasting). Beyond the technical issues we have to note that we’re not native english nor radio speakers. Through habit we will hopefully get into the flow of speaking, but you will have to cope with some “eh”s and “mhm”s sometimes.

We are happy to receive any (constructive) feedback and criticism, corrections, comments, questions and notes: whiteroom (at) whiteroom-pod.com. We will try to reflect on this input in the podcast.

You can support the podcast by subscribing to it and by becoming a producer, if you like. A small contribution already makes a big difference.