A special event was happening last week as the staff of Agora de la dansehanded the audience blue plastic slippers to cover their shoes. kondition pluriel was presenting recombinant – le corps techn(o)rganique, a choreographic installation that relied heavily on new technologies.
As a result, all the seating had been removed from the room. Instead, the audience was asked to move within the space. Since it had been raining, the audience had to cover their shoes to make sure the floor would not get slippery for the performers.
The surrealism of a blue-footed audience was quickly lost as we entered the room. It simply could not compete with the eerie music that filled the space, sporadically overshadowed by dancer Catherine Tardif’s voice. Somewhere between moan and groan, her voice was a strong component in creating a discomforting atmosphere.
Behind her, a screen reflected a pink image broken by straight lines. The edges of the video projection were not square, but created a gradually more complex geometrical shape as Tardif moved her body. The reason for the changing shapes was that each performer was wearing four sensors (around their waist, on their head, and on each arm) that modified the environment as they traveled through the space.
As the audience paid closer attention to the screen, they realized the image was probably that of a digitally-distorted human. Already, the technology was reshaping the body.
However, computer altered images were not the only component used to achieve this effect. As we moved to the back of the room, Martin B