Visits to the Archive no.1: Always start with something else


It all started with Experiment 1.
November 2005, at Entré Scenen.

The experiment was called Musical Improvisation and Text and was an ambitious attempt to explore a process of co-creation between playwrights and improvising musicians. It was at the same time so challenging and rewarding an experience that I still consider it one of my favourites of all our experiments. What a way to start out. Later, I wrote in the report:

"Afterwards I think that starting out gently and minimalistically was not the best idea. To immediately seduce everybody into this strange universe, it might have been better to start with a big bang: all performers on the floor, improvising wildly - writers writing whatever comes into their minds. Not that the voice performers weren’t wild and wonderful from the start - but the minimalistic restraint that I put on them focused the work on fine little details and an intense kind of listening that the dramatists might have been more capable of exploring at a later time.

On the other hand, I find that in all our discussions after the workshop, people (including myself) think that we should have started with something else, because at first the work was hard and then it got so much easier and better - and I’m wondering if it wouldn’t have been like that whatever we did... "

Maybe that was the most important lesson from Experiment 1: Starting out is difficult, and then it gets better... Or: When you know you should have started out with something else, you also know that you are now smarter than you were before. Mission accomplished!

Report from Experiment 1:

To celebrate Laboratoriet's anniversary, artistic director Barbara Simonsen is making this series of Visits to the Archive, rediscovering 10 years of performing arts experiments and artistic research at Laboratoriet.