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Auditory space: emergent modes of apprehension and historical representations in Three Tales

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This article reappraises and develops Marshall McLuhan's theory of auditory space as a critical tool for interrogating multi-channel modes of combined media performance that develop an immersive experience through soundscape and image interaction. Commonalities in the practise of Erwin Piscator, Steve Reich and Beryl Korot are explored, specifically in their respective applications of technology as a means by which to re-present historical events and document lived experiences with political intent. The argument is in part framed by contemporary views on historiography and historicity, which are contextualized with respect to postmodern theory. The intersections of stage configuration, representational strategies and spectator distance are briefly discussed from a historical perspective in relation to theatrical stagings that operate different approaches to illusion or anti-illusion. A performance of Steve Reich and Beryl Korot's Three Tales is analysed, interrogating its modes of address as seen in the light of auditory space. The argument is in part sustained by a critique of Jacques Derrida's theories of deconstruction and his response to issues raised in Artaud's Theatre of Cruelty. The affective potential of music is assessed using phenomenology as a means through which to describe perceptual modes encountered in multi-channelled performance.

Keywords: Derrida; Merleau-Ponty; Three Tales; auditory space

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1386/padm.1.3.207/1

Affiliations: The University Of Chichester.

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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  • The journal is a forum to energise, innovative and inspire creative thinking and practice surrounding the combination of digital technologies with the performance arts (theatre, dance, music, live art). Disciplines may be domain-specific or in convergence.
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