What it does
Alice Chauchat Paxton's dances are an object of awe, a symbol of high culture. That they are improvised gives them a surplus value of authenticity, and his presence is known as mythical. When his virtuoso interpretation of the Goldberg Variations is re-enacted by another performer, the latter necessarily dances them "less well" but also dances a different dance: a dance of trying, striving to execute "properly" as well as a dance of appropriation where the dance doesn't belong to a particular person's virtuosity. The sentimental relation one can have to the "original" is replaced with the sentimental relation to physical engagement and attachment to earlier mentioned culture. The singing of Buena Vista Social Club's songs is another case of cultural appropriation. BVSC was made famous by Wim Wenders' movie and the sentimental attachment of the audience to it reflects a belief in the old Cuban musicians' authenticity. The performer is neither Cuban nor a musician, and we can enjoy his singing because of his (unskilled)engagement as well as because of our own attachment to earlier mentioned culture. We are touched and we know that this is the product of our attachment to cultural symbols, reflected in the performer's engagement.
Sebastian Lingserius To reproduce existing pieces in two different art forms as thorough as possible, and by doing that question the concept of quality in those.
Johan Thelander Adding to the discussion of authorship and (re)production, bringing forth some not uninteresting aspects of using the concepts of postproduction. Questioning the norm of aesthetics within the theatre situation regarding skill, who is allowed to perform what and where?
Sidney Léoni The acknowledgement of what it is (re)produced in that performance is essential to get a faithful reading of it. This process of recognition make visible the aim of the performer to reproduce as precise as possible a dance which already exist involving thus deeper questions about authorship, patrimony/historicity, technicability, ... The expected "quality" of a readymade is blassedly manipulated and switched by Mr. Spånberg to regive a potentiality on preexisting creations in order to reflect on nowadays interests.
Amanda Apetrea Powered by emotion is strongly questioning the norms of stage art and, being a performer (in this case dancer and singer)and maker, by reproducing something already done with the intention of simply doing the best that one can. Regardless of what knowledge the one performing it has from the beginning. It looks at something else than perfected technique. It makes me think of how I look at stage art (and any art really) and what I consider to be good.
Emma Kim Hagdahl Mårten Spångberg is trying his best, and he is performing Steve Paxton’s improvisation. It looks as if he is improvising, although he is not, to him, it is choreographed. I wonder what it would look like if it were improvised, would it look choreographed then? Probably not, anyhow, at first I’m thinking that he is irreplaceable but I later on I realize that he totally does not have to be. Yes, it would be a different reading of the piece with someone else but it’s not what is most important, the most important thing is that it is being done. It could be done by someone more trained dancer as well even if the piece could be seen as a critique of a kind of western technique or skill. I see the piece mostly as a critic on things such as authorship, what is contemporary, what is choreography, dance, authenticity etc. but in nicely embedded in the works of the popular and well known Paxton and Buena Vista Social Club. He is not really trying to trick anyone, but it’s right there, if you want to see it. Enjoy.