Eros Eris

created by Liz Lea (choreographer) and Sarah Rubidge (Digital imagery)

with John Metcalfe (composer), Gabriella Csanyi-Wills (Set and costume design), Karen Norris (lighting)

Liz Lea & Feargus Ó Conchúir (Dancers)

Presented at the Linbury Studio Theatre, Royal Opera House, London: May 21st -24th 2007


Eros~Eris is a choreographic work in which the live dance and virtual imagery have been developed in tandem to create a single choreographic image. Drawing on the writings of pre-Socratic philosopher Empedocles saw the world as a sphere in which all the elements were unified, although always in a constant play between unity (Love, which makes one out of many) and multiplicity (brought about by Strife, which makes many out of one). The first philosopher to propose that the world was made up of four fundamental elements, Earth, Fire, Air and Water, Empedocles conceived world as being in a state of eternal return, a notion revived by Nietzsche almost three millennia later, yet always in a state of flux, . Eros~Eris explores the themes of transformation and flux, repetition and difference - using live and virtual imagery to articulate the play between these oppositions.

Much of the digital imagery shown on the stage is either generated from the movement being performed by the dancers, or derived from some of the larger-scale movement patternings characteristic of the choreographic material against/with which it plays. In addition, in keeping with the themes underlying Empedocles's philosophical system, in which air refers to the band of atmospheric air that encompasses the earth, some of the imagery is generated by scientific visualizations of the movement of weather systems and other non-material entities. All the imagery is highly abstracted from the original source, which is transformed in Mark Coniglio's softwareIsadora using a variety of carefully selected video processing and programming systems to generate a trace, or remainder, which echoes the flows and dynamics of the motion of the source imagery. These images are integrated with the live choreography both temporally and spatially. They are projected not merely on the cyclorama, but also onto the floor and onto elements of the stage set. The latter become part of a fragmented screen within the stage environment, which actively projects the digital imagery directly into the choreographic space. The interweaving of the flows and rhythms of the live and virtual imagery creates a composite choreographic image in both time and space.





Eros~Eris: Performance-excerpt 1

The digital imagery in the excerpt is abstracted from a video portrait of the male dancer, which was then processed using Isadora to create an echo of the dancer in the middle of the stage.

Eros~Eris: Performance- excerpt 2

The digital imagery in the excerpt is abstracted from a short video of the movement of a dancer running back and forth across a large dance studio in shallow diagonal pathways. It is then processed in Isadora overlaying multiple processing systems to achieve the abstract blue flashes. Three separate Isadora systems are run through three projectors to cover the set and stage. c


Click here for more clips of the live performance


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