Jonathan Burrows & Matteo Fargion Guest Performances

Jonathan Burrows & Matteo Fargion

Five Duets @Frankfurt Lab 21-23 September 2012

"Burrows and Fargion describe what they do as 'handmade and humanscale'. They build with simple, non-spectacular elements but arrive often at a deceptive virtuosity, radiating delight even as it makes the audience think". Over the past ten years, the two artists have built a body of duets which juxtapose the formality of music composition with a radical and open approach to performance and audiences." (Programme Notes)

Jonathan and Matteo in performance. Photo: Florian Jenett

These duets form the basis of their online digital score project with Motion Bank (read about the initial concepts). The FIVE DUET Guest Performances gave Frankfurt audiences a unique opportunity to see these works performed in the following order:

- Cheap Lecture & The Cow Piece (21 Sep)

- Speaking Dance & Counting To One Hundred (22 Sep)

- Both Sitting Duet (23 Sep)

These performances can be viewed on their score website

Jonathan and Matteo in performance. Photo: Martin Streit

On 23 September, following the performance of Both Sitting Duet, Jonathan Burrows, Matteo Fargion and William Forsythe engaged in a Motion Bank Dialogue on the themes of COUNTERPOINT (an interest they all share and a core research question for the Synchronous Objects project) and the PRINCIPLES  Jonathan and Matteo rely on when performing together such as: 'each material should have the speed it needs', 'each give leverage to the other' and 'closing and preparing are unpulsed'.

Motion Bank Dialogue.Moderation: Scott deLahunta. Photo: Martin Streit

They also discussed how they work with STRUCTURES TO FILL for example the 7, 6, 14, 14 and 7 pattern from Cage's 'Lecture on Nothing' which they base the structure of Cheap Lecture on. Patterns such as these are often used as a basis for their work. This would become a key topic for the Motion Bank research, in particularly the value or interest of these patterns in the absence of live performance. 

Motion Bank Dialogue. Matteo Fargion, Jonathan Burrows & William Forsythe. Photo: Jessica Schäfer

Video Impression: Motion Bank Dialogue and performance material.

Video: Anna Berger