Splice programme

Day One (15 November 2013)

Session 1: Why Splice? Fueling the ‘scientific turn’ in contemporary performance and music practice  

Welcome and introduction
Dr Alex Mermikides (Kingston University) and Dr Milton Mermikides (University of Surrey)
Nicola Triscott (The Arts Catalyst) and Jenny Paton (Wellcome Trust)
The Wellcome Trust is among the most significant supporters of artworks that engage with biomedical science in the UK. Arts Adviser Jenny Paton surveys a number of recent performance and music/sound projects supported by the Arts Awards scheme.The Arts Catalyst is one of the UK’s most distinctive arts organisations, distinguished by ambitious artists’ commissions and its critical and playfully experimental approach to the relationship between art, science and society. Director Nicola Triscott discusses its work. more details here.

Session 2: Music of Science: Encounters between Science and Music 

Introduced and convened by Milton Mermikides

Charlotte Jarvis discusses Music of The Spheres, a project which utilises new bioinformatics technology developed by Dr. Nick Goldman to encode a new musical recording by Mira Calix into DNA. Charlotte is an artist and film maker who collaborates with scientists. Her work has featured at the V&A, the Wellcome Trust, the Barbican and elsewhere.

Dr Anna Sadnicka (University College London) presents ‘A Neuroscience Digest for Musicians’ on how experiments in motor learning can improve musicianship. Anna is a Clinical Research Fellow at the Sobell Department of Motor Neuroscience and Movement Disorders at the UCL Institute of Neurology and an Honorary Neurology Registrar at the National Hospital for Neurology and Surgery. more here

Session 3 (Part 1): Is There Any Body In/Out There? Part 1: Performing the Medical Archive 

Introduced and convened by Alex Mermikides

Dr Anna Farthing introduces The Magic of Medicine, an innovative events programme that she has created at the Thackray Medical Museum and forthcoming developments with the UK Medical Collections Group. Anna draws on her experience in performance and film in her creative approach to museum interpretation. She is Director of Harvest Heritage Arts and Media and a founding partner of Harvest Films Ltd.

Session 3 (Part 2): Is There Any Body In/Out There? Part 2: Three Performances about Inner and Outer Space 

Alex Kelly performs Third Angel’s current project, 600 People, a performance lecture created with Dr. Simon Goodwin (University of Sheffield).
Alex is co-artistic director of Sheffield based, internationally acclaimed theatre company, Third Angel. The company makes a range of work connecting the territories of theatre, live art, installation, film, video, photography and digital & online media, which tours throughout Britain, mainland Europe and beyond. Simon is Reader in Astrophysics in the department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Sheffield.

Brian Lobel presents on his new project, Fun with Cancer Patients, developed with Birmingham Teenage Cancer Trust and Fierce Festival. Brian’s diverse body of performance work is united by a focus on the body, including the unique bodily experience of serious sickness. Brian is Senior Lecturer at the University of Chichester.

Tom and Mark Espiner (co-directors of Sound and Fury) discuss their highly acclaimed production, Going Dark (a collaboration with Hattie Naylor) which draws on the science of visual perception, eye disease and the universe in a tale about a planetarium narrator who finds himself going blind. Sound and Fury draw on the disciplines of theatre, Foley artistry, sound design, music and storytelling to create uniquely immersive performance.

more here

Session 4: Scientifically Sound: Sound and Listening Projects 

Introduced and convened by Milton Mermikides

Dr. Simon Park creates unique artworks from the microbial world in order to challenge assumptions about the invisible world of bacteria, mould and slime. Here he discusses his work with a particular focus on sound. Simon is Senior Lecturer in Health and Medical Sciences at the University of Surrey.

David Rosenberg discusses his latest project Electric Hotel that draws on research from the UCL’s Ear Institute in its use of audio technology. This project continues David’s engagement with medical science and explorations into binaural and other audio technologies. David is an experimental theatre-maker and co-founder of Shunt.

Professor Tony Myatt presents ‘Dewy and Dardanella; fusing art and science in contemporary audio practice’. The paper describes the T-B A21Academy, an initiative based in Vienna and on board MS Dardanella-a research vessel currently circumnavigating the Americas that integrates artists’ and scientists’ work with oceans, related environments and conservation. As well as being Research Director of the Academy, Tony is Subject Leader in Sound Recording at the University of Surrey.

more here

Day Two (16 November 2013)

Session 5: Let’s Get Physical: Theoretical Physics Three Ways 

Introduced and convened by Milton Mermikides

Dr David Berman is Reader in Theoretical Physics at Queen Mary University, London. Here he describes a number of projects he has undertaken with a variety of artists in different media, all focussed on ideas in string theory. As Director of Outreach at the Physics Department, he regularly engages with artists and media, and has published on this subject.

Professor Jean Dibble introduces her print series The Life in Physics, a work that responds to developments in physics since the turn of the century and the consequent shift in our understanding of the workings in the world. Alongside her professional practice, Jean teaches Printmaking at the University of Notre Dame, where she is also Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Internationally reknown choreographer, Gilles Joubin, was awarded the first Collide@CERN Geneva prize in Dance and Performance. During his residency at the world’s largest particle physics laboratory he explored the relationship between the mind and body. Here he discusses the work he created there and since.

Session 6: Mind/Cognition/Memory: Performing Cognitive Processes 

Introduced and convened by Alex Mermikides

Professor Nicola Shaughnessy presents ‘Performance Acts’, a paper on the potential for participatory performance to engage with neuropsychologies. She draws on Imagining Autism, a collaboration between the disciplines of psychology and performance, funded by the AHRC, that seeks to remediate the difficulties that autistic children has with communication, social interaction and imagination. Nicola is Professor of Performance at the University of Kent and Director of the Centre for Cognition, Kinesthetics and Performance.

Melanie Wilson, a London-based writer, performer and sound artist, introduces Autobiographer a performance that unfolds the processes of dementia through the subjective power of sound. Melanie’s performances, installations, films and audio works centre of the use of sound as a distinct and subjective agency.

Jacek Ludwig Scarso is artistic director of Elastic Theatre, a company that bridges the gap between music theatre and cutting edge performance. Here he introduces Julius: a multimedia project. Julius extends the company’s multi-disciplinary approach to engage with the psychology of intrusive thoughts and compulsive behavior. Jacek is Senior Lecturer in Performing Arts and London Metropolitan University.

Session 7: Encounters: Open Discussion and Networking Session 

Session 8: (Medical) Science on Stage 

Introduced and convened by Alex Mermikides

Suzy Willson is Co-director of Clod Ensemble, an award-winning performance company whose work focuses on movement and music. Here she discusses the company’s recent productions which engage with biomedical science, including An Anatomie in Four Quarters (Sadler’s Wells 2011), Under Glass (2009) and Must (2007), a collaboration with Peggy Shaw. Suzy also leads the ground-breaking Performing Medicine project that employs the arts in training medical students and health practitioners. She is Honorary Senior Lecturer at Barts and The London School of Medicine.

Kazuko Hohki and Professor Alistair Forbes discuss their collaborative project, Incontinental. This performance – which features gastroenterologist Alistair on stage, is a cabaret of stories, situations, song, science and a spot of ballroom dancing, about faecal incontinence, control and what it means to lose it. Kazuko is a singer, musician, animator, director, performer, storyteller and founder Japanese pop performance group Frank Chickens. Alistair is Professor in Gastroenterology & Clinical Nutrition at UCL.

Dr. Kirsten Shepherd-Barr is author of Science on Stage: From Doctor Faustus to Copenhagen (Princeton University Press) a historical survey of theatre’s engagement with science. She is currently editing (with Carina Bartleet) two special issues of the journal Interdisciplinary Science Review on ‘new directions in theatre and science’. In this paper she surveys contemporary engagements between science and theatre. Kirsten is Lecturer and Tutorial Fellow in Modern Drama and Oxford University.

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