NARCISSE & CO
“A stunning performance” – Musiques et Cultures Digitales
Narcisse & Co, an interactive multimedia dance performance piece, is a new evolution in Tamango and Jean de Boysson’s collaborative work, a poetic journey within an intricate interactive soundscape and a mesmerizing visual environment that blurs the line between real and virtual realms. Narcisse & Co evokes the search of a man for his own identity in a world where images rule and humanity seems to become more and more de-materialized.
Tamango, with his fusion of body percussion, Afro-Caribbean movement, American jazz-tap and freestyle expression, interacts not just with his projected image but with the audio-visual scenic environment; the soundscape is made both of pre-recorded material and of sounds triggered by the performer’s movements through the use of interactive technology (various types of sensors, triggers, infrared cameras) and Max MSP, a real-time software for digital signal processing that provides the possibility of relationships between dance and music. Using Max MSP, Urban Tap is also creating live interaction between the performer and his own projected video images. At times the images are pre-recorded and the performer interacts with them in an audio-visual “call & response”. At other times, the images are recorded live, then looped on various screens, creating an ensemble made up of virtual clones executing a live audiovisual counterpoint composition.
The scenography – a stage covered with white sand dunes, pools of water and giant spiderwebs - evokes timeless landscapes such as an underground river or a desert. High contrast video silhouettes of the performers projected on large transparent walls of falling sand create an illusion of 3D or holographic moving images. Other seemless projecting surfaces are used, such as fishing nests or water (as seen from under a glass bowl, as in photo). As tightrope walkers between the real and virtual worlds, Tamango and Jean de Boysson as the VJ, or videographer mixing imagery live during each performance, create and move about an environment that is all an extension of themselves.
Narcisse & Co, co-produced by le théâtre du Volcan Scène Nationale in le Havre, France, will premiere in October 2010. A 30-minute work-in-progress version was presented in France in March-April 2009 at le théâtre de l’Agora in Evry, l’Hippodrome in Douai, le Carré des Jalles in Saint-Médard, Elmediator in Perpignan and le Volcan in le Havre.
“A superb composition” – La Dépêche du Midi