"A passion for bringing together expertise in the arts, computing and technology is inspiring the University of Greenwich's new Professor of Digital Creativity.
Gregory Sporton, who joins in January  from Birmingham City University, has spent much of his academic career researching the impact of new technology on the visual and performing arts. He is a former professional dancer and has also researched the history of ballet in Soviet times.
He is excited about introducing a new and original focus on the arts to Greenwich. 'I aim to gather together the expertise we have in so many disciplines, such as creative arts, computing, visualisation and all the rest, and make something new and interesting,' Professor Sporton says.
'The arts and sciences are drawn more closely together by technology: there is less differentiation than people think, and at Greenwich I want to build a research environment to explore that."
(University of Greenwich News, 17 December 2012)
"In his installation performances such as Human Writes or Heterotopia, to which Forsythe has dedicated an increasing amount of his time in recent years, choreography becomes a social practice. Forsythe's installations are controlled test arrangements in which all the participants can observe themselves, their bodies and their movements together. When a performance like Human Writes deals in substance with the difficulties surrounding universal human rights, it becomes clear where the potential of dance and movement can lie. After all, it's not abstract universal laws alone that guarantee our co-existence. It is much more our physical actions, our daily movements that create and shape the community. Herein lies the political meaning of Forsythe's notion of dance. He creates spaces where he places people in a new, unknown relationship to themselves so that they reflect differently on their (social) spheres and in so doing explore their own potential scope for action."
(Gerald Siegmund, May 2008, Goethe-Institut)
Fig.3 Dominik Mentzos, "Human Writes", performance-Installation by William Forsythe and Kendall Thomas [http://www.theforsythecompany.com/pressphotos/humanwrites/].
"Arts Alliance Media has announced an exclusive digital distribution agreement with Montreal-based DigiScreen Corporation, the Pillar Group and the Royal Opera House. Under the terms of the agreement Opus Arte, the opera's TV and DVD production company, will to bring ballets, operas and dance from the Royal Opera House and other international performing arts companies to cinema screens across Europe. The deal encompasses theatres in the UK and Ireland, France, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Benelux and the Nordic territories. Filmed in high definition, the screenings will be both pre-recorded and live, projected in digital cinema, with 5.1 surround sound. The inaugural screenings will include the first cinematic performances of ballet, with The Royal Ballet's award-winning production of Frederick Ashton's Sylvia with Darcey Bussell in the title role, and The Royal Opera's production of Le Nozze Di Figaro directed by David McVicar. Other upcoming titles to be screened from the new series will include Sleeping Beauty, Carmen, Romeo and Juliet as well as Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci from Teatro Real in Madrid. Further ballet and opera performances from the extensive Opus Arte relationships will be announced in due course. AAM will be responsible for cinema exhibitor booking negotiation, digital print services, security and tracking, and live event project management, as well as comprehensive marketing and public relations support, in collaboration with Opus Arte, ROH and DigiScreen. Opera in cinemas has recently proved to be a success in Europe for both The Metropolitan Opera and the Arts Alliance Media-distributed La Scala series, with many saying that the experience is like having the best seat in the house and at a fraction of the cost. Cinema audiences are able to see the performers, the costumes and the sets up close and personal, at their convenience, in their local cinema. The Royal Opera House is embracing this new opportunity as part of its audience engagement strategy, committed to reaching wider and more diverse audiences around the world, as well as opening the minds of people to new creative experiences. The agreement signifies how digital cinema is dramatically changing the cinema-going experience, enabling audiences to enjoy alternative entertainment previously only accessible in live venues. Prior to digital cinema projection technology, the high cost of 35mm prints did not allow this type of content to be seen in cinemas. Now, with affordable digital prints and satellite distribution technology, content can be programmed widely into cinemas. In the UK, Odeon and Cityscreen Picturehouse cinemas have initially signed up to exhibit. The first screening will be Le Nozze Di Figaro later this month in thirteen Odeon cinemas, with Picturehouse showing in up to twenty cinemas in June. Other cinema exhibitors across the UK and Europe will be announced in early summer. Paul Chesney, director of business development for AAM says, 'Digital cinema is enabling cinemas to become vibrant cultural entertainment centres, as well as movie houses. We are delighted to be working with the Royal Opera House, Opus Arte and DigiScreen and thrilled to be bringing these stunning performances to cinema exhibitors across the UK and Europe.' In a joint statement Mark Hooper, CEO of DigiScreen and Michael J. St. Clair, Chairman of The Pillar Group, said, 'We are pleased to be working with Arts Alliance Media, one of Europe's leading specialists in implementing the digital cinema deployment, to bring this great content to the Home Market. AAM's local knowledge will be of significant value to us as we work to fulfill the wishes of the ROH and Opus Arte to bring this content to the farthest corners of the UK. With AAM as our partner, we will bring artistic content and independent film from around the world to the European cinemas. The audience is sure to benefit from this relationship.' Tony Hall, chief executive of the Royal Opera House and executive chairman of Opus Arte, says, 'I am excited by this pioneering new direction for the Royal Opera House at the start of the 21st Century. Being at the forefront of the burgeoning digital platform allows us to bring brilliant ballets and operas from the world renowned Royal Ballet and Royal Opera to cinema screens all over the globe. As Opus Arte film more at the ROH, and at other great opera and dance companies, we will have an unbeatable line-up of cinema entertainment for exhibitors around the world. Having experienced the performances first hand, I cannot emphasize enough what an exhilarating experience these screenings live or recorded are, the high def digital technology coupled with Surround Sound is remarkable.' Hans Petri, managing director of Opus Arte says, 'In order to recreate the excellence of the stage performances in a cinematic environment, we have been highly selective about our choice of partners. DigiScreen, The Pillar Group and Arts Alliance Media are market leaders in providing top quality alternative content to cinema chains. We are confident we can provide audiences with the very best digital experience. There is so much more to look forward to.'"
(Digital Cinema Report, 2008)
"Video de la reconstrucción del Ballet triádico hecha por Margarete Hastings en 1970. El video completo dura 32 minutos. Esta versión contó con la asesoría de Ludwig Grote y Xanti Schawinsky (alumnos de Schlemmer en la Bauhaus) y de Tut Schlemmer, la viuda de Oskar Schlemmer. La música es de Erich Ferstl. Está dividido en tres partes: amarillo, rosa y negro. Esta versión es una reconstrucción basada en la documentación sobre el ballet triàdico."
Fig.1-3 Marianne Hasting, Franz Schömbs (1970). "Triadisches Ballett", Dancers: Edith Demharter, Ralph Smolik and Hannes Winkler
Fig.4 Triadic Ballet costumes by Oskar Schlemmer, Metropol Theatre, Berlin 1926
Sadler's Wells, 11 - 12 October 2003
"Luminous is a choreographic masterpiece danced with virtuosity and refinement, litheness and lyricism. Saburo Teshigawara, who created it for his company Karas in 2001, is also lead dancer and, with his long-time collaborator Kei Miyaka, responsible for music, costume and scene design. His choreography is thrillingly liquid and - through both movement and stillness - boldly explores the sculptural qualities of the human body. Trained in classical ballet as well as the plastic arts, Teshigawaraís [sic] dancing seamlessly integrates the formal and amorphous, controlled and wild, slow and frenzied dimensions of his choreography.
In part 1, the dancers streak in and out of patches of light which at first seem to entrap them, but from which they eventually escape with spellbindingly mercurial gestures. Light is explored with glass mirrors, luminous constumes, light-box silhouettes and masterful use of spotlighting. And darkness - which in Teshigawaraís fertile choreographic imagination seems so much more than merely the absence of light - is embodied in the remarkable Stuart Jackson, a dancer blind from birth whose contact with the space around him feels almost physical. When he spreads his hands, or tries to touch the air with outstretched arms, or twists and turns in a space that he seems to have perfectly measured out, he brings alive a world - almost a world-view - experienced through touch and movement alone.
After the interval, the atmosphere changes completely. Strange figures, phosphorescently lit, some minus heads or hands or entire upper torsos, caper around elusively. At one point a cloak flies over the stage. A nun-like figure is suspended mid-air. Two walls enclose a glowing green figure, and open and shut like a huge book. And then all this eerie activity gives way to a meditative solo by Teshigawara, in white on a bare stage, who alternates floating movement with sudden sharp slicing curves and fast spilling turns. He is eventually joined by a black-clad Jackson. They circle around each other, in a dialogue that seems incomprehensible to the on-looker and yet vital in every sense of the word.
The only irritation in Luminous is the portentous and sometimes vapid poetry read by Evroy Deer, which gets in the way of the dancing and dilutes rather than adds to its ëmeaningí [sic]. Apart from that, however, nothing is sensationalist or kitschy. Above all nothing is arbitrary: everything feels essential in the indefinable way of great art."
(Simon May, 2003, Online Review London)
Fig.1 Dominik Mentzos, 'Saburo Teshigawara'.