Exploring the software programmer as choreographer

Sicchio, Kate (2010) Exploring the software programmer as choreographer. In: Digital Resources for Humanities and Arts, September 2010, London.

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Abstract

Within dance performance which utilizes real-time video projection, there is a tendency to create a dichotomy of choreography and technology. This is commonly seen through the structure of roles assigned during the performance devising process, which tends to separate the software engineer from the dance maker in collaborative situations. However, upon closer examination of these roles, one can see the role of the programmer has much more in common with the choreographer within work with real-time video, and a programmer could be considered a choreographer.

Both choreographer and programmer working with real-time video systems are charged with organizing movement, whether they are working with bodies or pixels. They both create tasks in which this movement is filtered and then viewed by an audience. This approach to dance and data sharing elements of their creative process is shared in Forsythe's Synchronous Objects (2009), where choreographic devices are shared with computing programming to create a range of objects from java applets to digital animations.

Older projects have shown this divide, such as Software for Dancers (deLahunta, 2002) where choreographers were paired up with technologists to work on creating software that might be useful for choreographers. Dixon (2007) writes about digital dance and software, with a distinction of programmers who worked on dance projects, rather than as a dance maker.

This paper is informed by practice-based research by the author, whose choreographic process includes both programming real-time video systems, as well as choreographing movement within dance works.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Presentation)
Additional Information:Within dance performance which utilizes real-time video projection, there is a tendency to create a dichotomy of choreography and technology. This is commonly seen through the structure of roles assigned during the performance devising process, which tends to separate the software engineer from the dance maker in collaborative situations. However, upon closer examination of these roles, one can see the role of the programmer has much more in common with the choreographer within work with real-time video, and a programmer could be considered a choreographer. Both choreographer and programmer working with real-time video systems are charged with organizing movement, whether they are working with bodies or pixels. They both create tasks in which this movement is filtered and then viewed by an audience. This approach to dance and data sharing elements of their creative process is shared in Forsythe's Synchronous Objects (2009), where choreographic devices are shared with computing programming to create a range of objects from java applets to digital animations. Older projects have shown this divide, such as Software for Dancers (deLahunta, 2002) where choreographers were paired up with technologists to work on creating software that might be useful for choreographers. Dixon (2007) writes about digital dance and software, with a distinction of programmers who worked on dance projects, rather than as a dance maker. This paper is informed by practice-based research by the author, whose choreographic process includes both programming real-time video systems, as well as choreographing movement within dance works.
Keywords:choreographer, software engineer, digital performance
Subjects:W Creative Arts and Design > W500 Dance
Divisions:College of Arts > Lincoln School of Performing Arts
ID Code:3918
Deposited By: Kate Sicchio
Deposited On:31 May 2012 16:55
Last Modified:31 May 2012 16:55

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