Thursday, April 21, 2005

Some kind of crazy performance art drinking binge blog post

Well. Dearie Me.

It's mid afternoon, and christ, I'm still hungover. But then again, the hangover didn't actually kick in until about noon, so it's hardly surprising.

I've had a night out - or possibly, the night out had me. It had my wallet, too - lost somewhere between Balans at half past one in the morning, and lunchtime in the office. Could it be in the late night rrrock drinking den tucked down a side street in Soho? Did I leave it on someone else's bedroom floor? Did I have it in Starbucks at 9am as I staggerd workwards? I don't know - I was still drunk at the time.

So I'm a physical wreck, penniless, and exhausted. Worth it? God yes.

The priming for this spectacular display of licentiousness came from art. Blame Art, always. Art is big, Art can take it, Art quite enjoys being blamed, Art secretly enjoys the guilt trip, Art turns its filthy reputation to its advantage. Art snuck up on you, Art made you do it, Art caught you unawares. Art abandoned you a while ago, but turned up on your doorstep with tatty flowers and an endearing smile, and you couldn't bring yourself to turn Art away.

The art in question -
Tropicana in the vaults under London Bridge Station - was spectacular. The space and the way it has been used work so beautifully - even the smell of damp, dusty brickwork added to the totality. Figures appeared from the most total darkness I've been in for a long time: I was intensely aware of the audience around me, of being in a space with people. It's not an experience you get in regular theatre, when the regimented seats are designed to keep you focused on the stage, and not on what's going on around you. This isn't theatre in the round, mind - it's theatre in the walking through it, being lead, leading, shepherded and herded and having a beer half way through. Breaking the formality of the relationship between audience members, and also the performers, completley blurs the experience. you become paranoid - am I being part of someone else's performance? Should I be behaving the way I am?

The images of the whole thing were extraordinary too - lifts moving horizontally through the space, a hearse full of dancing girls, shafts of light, stained ceramic tiles. It felt like an extension of the world in La Jettee.

But, god, the dark. So dark that you start listening with your face and chest, just to get some kind of sense of the space you're in. I love that beautiful kind of dark, but find it completely unsettling.

Couple that with a beautiful yet unsettling lady on your arm, and it's little wonder you end up doing crazy all night.

Well, hello trouble; let's dance.

2 comments:

Julian said...

Not the Krobar by any chance?

kim said...

However did you guess?

Uh oh. Aunties' spies are after me...