Six Hours of Temporary Distortion at Watermill Center on Saturday

Performers from Temporary Distortion played for six hours at Watermill Center on Saturday. Morgan McGivern, photos

     The Watermill Center was the scene of a durational performance by Temporary Distortion on Saturday afternoon and evening. The New York City based performance group is in residence at the center and working on a new piece, My Voice Has an Echo in It.”

     Lasting six hours, the audience was invited to come in for parts of it or the entire piece. It was the first time the group had performed all six hours. They will tour France with the piece later this year. Text, music, and video comprise the work, which is delivered while the group is confined in a 24 by 6 foot hallway seen through two-way mirrors. The audience can see the performers, but they can only see themselves. The music is delivered through headphones.

     Temporary Distortion is known for these types of presentations in box-like structures, marked by little physical movement and a level of fantasy contributed to by recorded video juxtaposed with the live performances.

     Tonight, the Watermill Center will  present a demonstration and conversation about the current work of the Open Program of the Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards from Pontedera, Italy. The eight international artists will discuss their practice and current objectives and activities in New York. The event is free, but reservations are required through Eventbrite.

Because the performers were in an enclosed space, the audience listened to their music through headphones, encouraging an individualized response to the piece.
The piece was accompanied by video that contributed a dreamlike, otherworldly quality to the work.
One of the video projections