Theater / Opera
Over the years the Audio Gruppe — all while fullfilling its various engagements– has been consequently developing its repertoire. Members of the group –some of which have been involved in the productions for 10 years or longer — have developed their own solos with a particular instrument and/or costume.
In 1994 Die Audio Gruppe started working with “indoor” theatre spaces: cooperating with the director Elisabeth Zundel at Berlin’s Theater zum Westlichen Stadthirschen in Audio Drama. In this piece the actors performed within the audience (as opposed on stage and seperated from them) in order to showcase the fact that they were “wearing” their sounds.
Two years later Audio Ballerinas and Electronic Guys was presented at The Kitchen in New York City: this piece was a collage of different audio characters set in an around the audience.
More audio-figures began to emerge from the collaborative street performances, the Tokyo performances added the Audio Geishas’ sampler-and-stroboscope lighting duos to the palette. But it was only in 1998 after the creation of the Audio Kimonos that the Gruppe was able to present an evening at Berlin‘s legendary SO36 club. This piece included 4 Audio Ballerinas, 4 Audio Geishas, and 4 different solos (Electronic Guy) with a total of 12 participants. Six months later a similar event was presented at the Malta festival in Poznan in the courtyard of the local classical ballet school where the core personel of the Audio Gruppe was supplemented with 3 of the school’s teenage pupils. In February of 1999 DAG was invited to present 3 solo works at the International Dance and Technology Conference (IDAT) in Phoenix,Arizona where the group was able to hold its own against bombastic multimedia “intelligent” stage productions. In this context it is important to note that some of the Gruppe’s costumes have muted into highly indivualistic and self-contained sound units. These are individual “phonic” bodies — not devices of highly developed technology– that produce their own personal sounds and movements in intimate and close-to-the-spectator performances.
In 2002 I was approached by Berndt Schindowski, chief choreographer at Musiktheater im Revier (Gelsenkirchen Opera House) who commissioned me to create 12 electroacoustic costumes for HIGH FIDELITY, an opera on Elvis Presley. His wish was to adapt the Digital Memory choreography to a dance piece using the late singer’s songs (in effect: sample, play back, and distort the original songs through the dancers’ movements).
In the CYBERBIRDS Project (2009 Hohenrausch Festival/ Rostock) an Audio Ballerina (Rachel Brooker) equipped with a light-to-frequency-sensor and transmitter created sounds via the interaction of her movements and a spotlight. These sounds are amplified and visualized “live“ (as oscilloscope patterns and transmitted sounds) via the two CyberBirds at her side.