RED FLY/BLUE BOTTLE

NOORDERZON.NL, 2009, Romeo tent © Pierre Borasci

NOORDERZON.NL, 2009, Romeo tent © Pierre Borasci

“…moody, driving music…lyrical monologues, otherworldly videos and an ingeniously eerie set…a purposefully elusive work, a poetic meditation…” —The New York Times 

 

 

Red Fly/Blue Bottle, Here Arts Center, NY 2009
© Ryan Jensen

HERE ARTS CENTER, NYC, 2009 © Ryan Jensen

HERE ARTS CENTER, NYC, 2009 © Ryan Jensen

A clock explodes. A man departs for destinations unknown. Hypnotic songs fill up an empty house as a lone woman peers through her microscope. A theatrical event that bridges concert, cabinet of curiosities, and video installation, Red Fly/Blue Bottle challenges how we listen, look, and remember.

Aided by an elderly entomologist and a young doppelganger straight out of silent film, composer/performer Christina Campanella spins a sonic web that traces a young woman’s discovery of her companion’s deployment to a secret war and the steps she takes to make sense of his absence.

Staged as a concert that unfolds within a densely layered video installation, Red Fly/Blue Bottle conjures an associative visual landscape in which objects open up in unexpected ways, revealing worlds within worlds. Tightly crafted songs emerge from an evocative terrain of found sounds, ticking clocks, and analog tone generators. Miniature noir films are projected onto floating surfaces; live and pre-made video animates still objects. Red Fly/Blue Bottle explores the mediating effects of memory and how we use the power of our imagination to surmount that which we have lost.

Inspired by Joseph Cornell’s assemblages and the memory rooms of Louise Bourgeois, the post-apocalyptic, elegiac films of Chris Marker and Jem Cohen, and the sounds of Music Concrète and down-tempo dream pop, Latitude 14 makes work for performance that excavates the memory of objects, bends time, and blurs the boundaries of concert, theater, and installation. Poetic texts and the detritus of audio-visual technology bump up against state-of-the-art multimedia artistry. Things come together and break apart. Meaning accrues song by song, as objects transform and images accumulate, producing a Gertrude Stein-ian landscape of sonic and visual echoes.

For more images please click here.

For more video please click here.

Performance History

• EMPAC, RPI, Troy, NY, November 2010
• Noorderzon Festival, Romeo Tent, Groningen, NL, August 2009
• Here Arts Center, New York City, April 2009

Red Fly/Blue Bottle was developed c/o HARP (Here Artists Residency Program), and residencies at Digital Performance Institute, the Chocolate Factory, and Chashama, with the support of the New York State Music Fund, the Tobin Fund, the Greenwall Foundation, NYSCA Individual Artists program, the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, the David Bohnett Foundation, the Experimental Television, Center, CAP, Meet the Composer, LMCC’s Swing Space, and many generous individuals.

Credits

by Christina Campanella (music) and Stephanie Fleischmann (words)
in collaboration with Mallory Catlett (direction), Peter Norrman (video), Mirit Tal (live video)
with Black-Eyed Susan, Jesse Hawley, Chris Lee and Sam Baker (drums, ukelele), Erich Shoen-René (cello)
and Jim Findlay (set), Miranda Hardy (lights), Olivera Gajic (costumes), Jeremy Wilson (live sound)

Press

Loss Across Generations and Within a Moment The New York Times
“Moody, driving music…, lyrical monologues, otherworldly videos and an ingeniously eerie set…a purposefully elusive work, a poetic meditation.”

An Ominous and Beautiful Dream Dagblad van het Noorden Groningen, NL
…you, as the audience, have undergone a mysterious experience, one that appeals to your emotional faculties. You have been part of a fantastic journey and your sense of wonder has been engaged.”

The Curious Red Fly Takes Wing at Here The Village Voice
“…Sweetly strange…a complete, unique universe…. Red Fly/Blue Bottle just might generate some buzz.”

Red Fly/Blue Bottle—Genre Buster 13 Sunday Arts/NYC Arts
“RED FLY’s many layers of overarching themes and elements overlap, reveal, and eventually accrue to form a unique and lasting vision in each viewer’s mind. It’s too bad that “music-theater” simply doesn’t do justice to it—much like calling Anna Karenina ‘words on paper.‘”

Red Fly/Blue Bottle New York Press
“A mesmerizing fusion of performance art and multisensory installation….a compelling meditation on time and the agonies of waiting for a reunion that may never come.”

Red Fly/Blue Bottle Flavorpill
“A devastating look at loss guided by pulsating, memorable songs… overwhelmingly rewarding.”

The Voyage In Brooklyn Rail
“There is no “ordinary wondering” here, despite lyrics to the contrary. It is all extraordinary. The characters want to stop time, but the author actually does it. Each song is a meditation on a moment. The moment is drawn out, lengthened, examined, illuminated, somehow made more beautiful by being looked at so carefully.

“Look closer,” Clarissa urges herself. Experience more deeply, these artists seem to urge their audiences. Seeing and seeking are more important than knowing. Journeys are more interesting than destinations. Embrace mystery. Intuit instead.”

Crazy, Creepy, Cool Bust
“…Eye candy, fantastically creepy music, and an expert dash of steampunk fill the stage in this deliciously haunting concert… They’re a ridiculously talented group…”

Culturebot.com
“Christina Campanella’s music is lovely and haunting, Stephanie Fleischmann’s writing is elliptical and intriguing, Mallory Catlett’s direction is as comprehensive and nuanced as ever, completely creating a hermetic dreamscape world.”

‘Red Fly/Blue Bottle’ Layers Memories in a Multi-media Musical  Albany Times UnionObscene Jester.com
“The entire production team, performers and designers alike, is a force to be reckoned with … Red Fly becomes a wonderful touchstone for intelligent and moving multimedia pieces, and I certainly expect big things from this promising team.”

The Free George
Visually stunning….striking imagery…trancelike songs. ….reminiscent of early multimedia conceptual rock concerts, such as The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway by Genesis, …. Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon…and Neil Young’s Greendale concerts.

 

HERE ARTS CENTER, NYC, 2009 © Ryan Jensen

HERE ARTS CENTER, NYC, 2009 © Ryan Jensen