Created and Composed by Paola Prestini
Maya Beiser, cello | Tim Fain, violin
Erika Harrsch and Carmen Kordas, Visual Artists
Michael McQuilken, director (Room No. 35) | Brad Peterson, projections designer
Yi Zhao, lighting designer | Produced by Beth Morrison Projects and VisionIntoArt
Part One, House of Solitude, originally written for violinist Cornelius Dufallo, is performed this season by Tim Fain. Video by Carmen Kordas creates an environment that depicts the solo performer’s thoughts including solitude, extreme communication and connectivity, and the ultimate search for one’s self. Images of bodies appear—those of humans, other life forms, and hybrids, and Kordas’ artwork follows their journey through the four elements as they become part of the man’s life story. The imagery gradually dissolves into the forces of nature and the fluid shapes of dreams and take on a life of their own. They contort, grow, fuse, and age, reminding the audience of where life originated and the unknown dimension to which we are headed. The man’s journey through the labyrinth of his mind is represented by a solitary house. The bodies symbolize human connection from which he is offered a path of escape. House of Solitude ends with the man leaving on an unknown road.
Part Two, Room No. 35 is a sculptural multimedia experience inspired by Anais Nin’s novella “The House of Incest”, a surrealist story about a person attempting to escape from a dream in which she meets other versions of herself. Whereas House of Solitude concentrates on the labyrinth of the mind, Room No. 35 maps the labyrinth of the heart and seeks to unify the tangential impulses of the human spirit. Erika Harrsch’s video paints a fading remembrance of a hotel room submerged in water and surrounded by gaping eyes. During this thirty-minute piece, the room collapses onto itself through a symbolic tidal wave of sound and visual effects. The stage fills with an explosion of sound and light and recedes, leaving a tranquil calm sea projected on the visually flooded hotel room floor.
Photos by Jill Steinberg and Erika Harrsch