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Schrödinger’s notes: a minimalist equation for a Reckless Sleepers project

Egan, K (2018) Schrödinger’s notes: a minimalist equation for a Reckless Sleepers project. Studies in Theatre and Performance, 39 (2). pp. 177-197. ISSN 1468-2761

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Abstract

© 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This article explores the inherent musicality of Reckless Sleepers’ theatre work by reflecting on the compositional principles that guide the company’s creative process. Focussing on the complex structure of the performance Schrödinger (2011-present), and drawing on the author’s involvement as a performer and devisor on the project, the article provides an alternative dramaturgical reading of the processing and organisation of performance material through its relationship to minimalist composition and philosophy. Seeking to identify the score of Schrödinger as a series of musical ‘notes’, motifs, and melodic phrases that are continually repeated, re-organised, and re-iterated, the author unpacks his own journey through the creation and performance of the work with an emphasis on the structural integrity and signifying potential of the material being ‘played’. This article argues that the prioritising of form, style, and tone in the making of Schrödinger are central to an understanding of Reckless Sleepers’ practice; one that intentionally places a discussion on meaning at a distance during the creative process and that concentrates on the function of material from a structural, or musical, perspective.

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