«We might think of choreography in terms of ‘rehearsal’; that is, as the working out and working through of utopian, nevertheless ‘real’, social relations.» Andrew Hewit

— Shall we rehearse?

Rehearsal Series is a workshop methodology a cross-disciplinary exploration of choreography & computer code developed by Joana Chicau. By 'rehearsal' it is meant a temporary stage for experimenting with digital design tools which follow choreographic methods and thematic concerns. This format is very similar to a open workshop, open to any participants curious to explore the use of choreographic techniques to generate newness in design, new modes of thinking composition matters, participation, relations and articulations between bodies and technologies. Traditionally, a rehearsal is a built in process, a space and time for developing ideas and work acknowledging unexpected and unpredictable results.

In every rehearsal a selection of topics will be addressed and will serve as starting point to the construction of a choreographic code. During the rehearsals, the participants will be presented to various choreographic references, examples of scores and scripts, and participate in basic movement studies. Finally all participants are invited to contribute to the choreographic code: by translating the ideas discussed into programming logic or actual functions.

An important point about the Rehearsal Series is to break the distancing between mind/body, self/other, subject/object, designer/design piece; discovery/invention. Enhancing the idea of process over product: processes of becoming, becoming structures, becoming codes and scripts.


2018: Workshop at deliver: Agile Conference, Austin Texas USA

2018: Workshop at Integrated Digital Media department at New York University, USA

2018: Workshop at Aarhus University, Software Studies / Aesthetic Programming Course, Denmark

2018: Workshop in collaboration Replica Institute Berlin

2017: LavaLab, Amsterdam

2016: MediaLab-Prado, Madrid

2016: Willem De Kooning Academy, Rotterdam


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- - Medium: computer programming and interfaces have been the most explored tools in the context of the rehearsal series, even though each participant may choose a specific medium within its own digital practice.

- - Duration: the structure below may be adapted to different time spans; from a few hours to a full week depending on the depth and outcomes desired.

- - General structure:

- - - 1. Physical space.

Embodiment: exercises to warm up; simple movement sequences; creation of situations for collective and individual awareness of the bodies, the space, and the different rhythms.
The exercises take as its starting point the condition of our bodies and the movements we carry in our body history, our body relationship to cultural codes, private investigations of what are our basic movements, the proximity to ordinary, daily movement. Reaching the question of how default movement can be challenged by choreographic thought. Following the media theorist Brian Massumi’s “thinking-feeling of what happens”. An expansion of perception brings us into “affective co-motion”: by opening us to more possibilities for being affected, we increase our own power to affect in return. Integrating movement in the site of a creative practice, “thinking-feeling” in order to “activate the conceptual at work in the pre-articulation of the experiential”.

- - - 2. Scores vs Scripts

After-the-movement signification;
Introduction to choreographic concepts (theoretical context): viewpoints on space, viewpoints on time, in between, viewpoints on movement and on improvisation techniques.
References to works by choreographers and/or performers: showing films and examples of scores and scripts.
Group discussion of the possible relations to current design/technology paradigms; conceptual thinking.

- - - 3. Digital space.

The two points above will offer a blueprint for exploration of the choreographic meanings:
Rethinking display patterns; navigation and interactivity: aesthetic investigations comprising a system of design interweaved with choreographic thinking. What can we learn from the time qualities explored in choreographic space? And what can we learn from improvisation techniques?
Rethinking embodiment: cultivating heightened sensitivity to the relation of one’s body in (digital and physical) space in relation to information.
Leading to a reflection on 'Programming and being programmed'; moving away from pre-chroeographed systems, moving towards building our ow choreographies.
Time dedicated to the experimentation and critical reflections using digital interfaces/ design tools. And for developing their own contributions.

- - Outcomes: every participant will contribute with choreographic code, in the form of actual programming scripts or as visualisation of the connections that the research proposes.
It is also encouraged that each participant links the topics above with their personal modes of production, being more theoreticaly driven to practice based (design, compueter science, philosophical, architectural, political fields...).
In the end, the choreographic code will be compiled, and shared.

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