Chelsea Knight, Fall to Earth, Chapter 1 —“Conversion,” 2014 (production still). HD video, 5 min. Photo: Jeesu Kim
Presented as part of “Chelsea Knight: Fall to Earth,” a project of the R&D Season: SPECULATION.
“Two singers perform a duet…[their voices] oscillating between conflict and harmony. Microtonal diversions from a single pitch shared between their voices result in interference patterns known as acoustic beats. Two bodies struggle to achieve unison, even while every shift in the physical and sonic landscape causes a disturbance. They are enacting a highly choreographed violence based intensely on trust. Later, audience members will learn the fundamentals of stage combat from the same person who trained the performers. The choreography of violence here becomes an expression of something intimate.”
—Chelsea Knight and Nick Hallett
As part of the live filming for Chelsea Knight’s Fall to Earth, Chapter 4 — “Violence,” fight director Brad Lemons will be teaching stage combat to select members of the audience. Space is extremely limited. RSVP here.
Chelsea Knight works in video and performance to plumb the social and psychological underpinnings of group behavior, questioning how we encounter one another as singular entities. Her work considers the inadequacy of language and its relation to the reproduction of authority and identity. As an artist-in-residence during the Spring 2015 R&D Season: SPECULATION, Knight will produce the final chapters of Fall to Earth, a cycle of short videos inspired by Salman Rushdie’s magical realist novel The Satanic Verses. Each chapter is staged as a live event produced for video and takes as its point of departure themes related to socially condemned speech and other forms of silencing or restraint and includes original scores created by different collaborating artists. The chapters’ themes are “Conversion,” “Blasphemy,” “Resistance,” “Violence,” and “Silence.”
Saturday March 28, 1–3 PM: Fall to Earth, Chapter 2 — “Blasphemy” (Live Event with Mathew Paul Jinks)
Saturday April 18, 1–3 PM: Fall to Earth, Chapter 3 — “Resistance” (Live Event with Ryan Tracy)
Sunday June 7, 1–3 PM: Fall to Earth, Chapter 4 — “Violence” (Live Event with Nick Hallett)
Saturday June 20, 1–3 PM: Fall to Earth, Chapter 5 — “Silence” (Live Event with Christine Sun Kim)
Chelsea Knight received her BA from Oberlin College and her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Knight recently completed residencies at the Whitney Independent Study Program, the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Workspace program. She has had solo exhibitions and performances at the Brooklyn Museum; the St. Louis Art Museum; Aspect Ratio Projects, Chicago; DiverseWorks, Houston (with Mark Tribe); Abrons Art Center, New York; and Momenta Art, Brooklyn. She has also exhibited her work in group shows, including “Nouvelles vagues,” Palais de Tokyo, Paris; “Anti-Establishment,” Hessel Museum of Art, CCS Bard, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY; and the Young Artists Biennial, Bucharest.
Nick Hallett is a composer, vocalist, and cultural producer, who works across genre and mediums to create unique hybrids of music, art, and performance. Hallett’s first original opera, a collaboration with artist Shana Moulton, Whispering Pines 10, premiered at the Kitchen in April 2010 and has since been presented at the New Museum, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Carolina Performing Arts, Chapel Hill, NC; the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art’s TBA Festival, OR; Cricoteka, Krakow, Poland; and the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh. Hallett participated in the first RE:NEW RE:PLAY artist residency at the New Museum in May 2009, creating a four-part series of concerts that dealt with the voice as artistic medium, and his work was featured in the 2007 and 2009 Performa biennials. After organizing a performance for the Joshua Light Show in 2007, Hallett became the project’s music director and producer, collaborating with founder Joshua White to contextualize his pioneering approach to live cinema for contemporary audiences. Hallett is currently composing musical scores for the choreographers Bill T. Jones (to premiere in June 2015) and Luciana Acuña, and recently debuted a new opera project titled To Music.
Brad Lemons has directed fights for several plays, including Chitty Chitty Bang Bang on Broadway, Treasure Island, Macbeth, Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Evil Dead: The Musical, and The Three Musketeers. He has worked with the Metropolitan Opera, Theatre for a New Audience, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Animus Theatre Company, and the New Jersey Repertory Company. His work can be seen on film in Lies I Told My Little Sister, Asylum Seekers, All My Children, and the upcoming Bear With Us. He is currently on faculty at Circle in the Square Theatre School, Lafayette College, and the Neighborhood Playhouse. He was trained by the legendary fight director B.H. Barry and is President of the American Association of Fight Directors.
Artist residencies and commissions are generously supported by the Neeson / Edlis Artists Commissions Fund and by Laurie Wolfert.
Education and Public Engagement programs are made possible, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts. Additional support is provided by the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation. Endowment support is provided by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the Skadden, Arps Education Programs Fund, and the William Randolph Hearst Endowed Fund for Education Programs at the New Museum.
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