As the journey of creating this series of performances continues, the questions "What is a beginning?", "What is an ending?" and "What does it mean to continue?" are even more promenant. The global situation with the COVID-19 outspread has gotten the whole world on its toes and the collective feeling of life being on hold tints our views of what can be done in this time.
We have been continuing the research by investigating the sound qualities of sand. Pouring sand on different surfaces, like ice, plastic, and wood and playing with different rythms has been a task that has produced material for a video.
We travelled to Finland in the beginning of February to perform at the Yökylä-festival and were forced to stay here after. During this time we have taken the sand on walks in the nature, on ice and in forests. Each location has given a new meaning to the action of pouring sand.
Time is a concept that keeps revolving in our minds. When we pour sand from bottle to bottle we are a human timeglass. Each pour lasts a shorter time as the grains will not fall straight to the other glass, but they bounce of the glass to the ground creating a sound like a gentle rain. When a bottle is empty it is time fill up the glass bottle again and then start the pour from the beginning. It is impossible to gather all poured sand back to the bottle, just like it is impossible to hold on time - time will pass and things will change whether we want it to happen or not.
Where is the beginning of this action? Is it when we fill the bottles, or does the action begin each time when we tilt the bottle? And why is this such an important question?
When we think about performance as a creature reflected in time, and time as feature that influences our perception, we understand that in order to tell a story with our peformative actions, we have to be aware of the differences of our actions. This can be market with ends and beginnings. To collate a performance score we need to gather different actions and then weave those actions together in a way that gives the audience a feeling of a story arch. Ends and beginnings can fluctuate and overlap, but for the performer it is crucial to see the difference of each bit of material. This is how we create a meaning for a non-narrative piece, and give the audience something to interpret.
For this reason we have decided to think Mind Like an Open Songbook - performance series as a suite. This musical term allows us to consider the ends and beginnings of the different pieces created so far and to work towards a collection of pieces that can be performed together as a longer piece.
The durationality of the process of creation is then also apparent. All pieces of the suite are manifestations of the ongoing process, each exploring the main topic.
It has been a while since the last post. The journey took a stand still since the pandemic is giving everyone a bit of a hard time.
How ever, in the beginning of March we had the joy to perform Mind like an Open songbook at Yökylä-festival. The performance took a shape of an durational performance. Both night at the festival I poured sand from one bottle to another for 5 hours each night. I asked people to play with the sand with me and so they did. I asked: What it is to leave? What is it to stay?
The discussion ranged from Gods to summer holidays, from death to relationships.
Each night was a different one. Each performance started differently. People and conversation changed the performance and it felt as if the performance was growing with me, with each encounter where Iearnt more about the performance and its functions.
So Thank you Yökylä festival.
Thank you for the opportunity
We are grateful for these sleepless nights, for the conversation, for the togetherness.
Thank you for singing us a lullaby
For letting us explore, to get better, to research to bring our ideas to life.
Thank you for all of you who stayed there with us during the performance. Thank you for those who asked questions, for those who answered questions, for those who questioned and those who were open to be questioned. Thank you for playing with us in the sand. Thank you those who traveled with us. Thank you all, for bringing you and giving us so much to work forwards.
Thank you Yökylä for such an atmosphere. It was a pleasure to be there.
Pictures by: Aleksis Riehakainen
So! Last Tuesday came and went, time goes by, things change and evolve.
Based on the amazing feedback after the performance, we are exited to continue the journey to Tampere to perform on 28th and 29th of February @yokylafestivaali
Also a big thank you for everyone who came by. As we see it, the collective is the people who are there with us, experiencing and feeding back with their presence and words and help. The collective is us. You reading this now, you are a part of it too. This means that the collective really becomes a breathing, changing thing and everyone can truly get involved in as they wish. It is about doing together and sharing and taking action and being active and all that jazz. Or the exact opposite if that is how you are.
This piece seems to be work in progress as default. Work in progress in that sense that progress is what makes the process work. One step at a time, the journey continues. One pit stop, one performance at a time it is easier to map out where to go next, what is the next step to progress.
When I left for my bike trip through Europe (which serves as an inspiration for the process and everything it seems hahah), I had no clue what is going to happen. What happened in the end was change. Change happened.
Special thank you for Minttu for photos and for everyone at SaltSpace for great collaboration