As part of the series of performing arts staged in collaboration with the Community of Madrid’s Teatros del Canal, the Museo Reina Sofía presents #LOSMICRÓFONOS (#THEMICROPHONES) by Jorge Dutor and Guillem Mont de Palol. Upon its conclusion, the performance will be followed by an encounter with the artists, presented and moderated by Isabel de Naverán. Furthermore, on 31 October the artists will conduct a workshop in the Museo to share their practices, particularly those related to this project.
#LOSMICRÓFONOS (#THEMICROPHONES), first staged in 2013, is performed on this occasion in relation to the presentation of Lo mínimo, a new work by Dutor and Mont de Palol, on 25, 26 and 27 October 2019 and on 27 May 2020 in Teatros del Canal’s Sala Negra. The piece has been conceived in collaboration with artist and performer Cris Blanco and explores the capacity to generate small, and ostensibly implausible, quasi-magical actions with elements of everyday use. The possibility of a previous piece conversing with this latest production occasions a survey of a work which, through the prism of time, reveals numerous constants with different paths of development.
In #LOSMICRÓFONOS we sit in on a conversation in which those speaking only do so through the names of famous stars, well-known lines from mainstream films or melodies learnt from themed radio and the background music of stores and transportation. These references are all tied to particular pop stars or, more specifically, to the names of particular stars or, more specifically, to the sound made from pronouncing such names.
Celine Dion, Michael Jackson, Alejandro Sanz. For a certain generation, these names cannot be prised apart from an aesthetic, dance movement or style. Although they are not stars from the sky, they still act within a constellation; they are part of the so-called star system, a system of stars which light up a type of sky, using their influence, drawing a network of connections between figures, life movements, affection and images. Which universe can be conceived under the celestial vault created by these “other” stars? This was one of the questions asked by the artists when they undertook the project seven years ago.
Its title, written as one word and preceded by a hashtag, situates this work in the age of tags, in the world of complicity and tracking that characterises virtual social networks. It also references the instrument used to amplify voices and sounds when they alone cannot be heard in spaces like those we imagine to be occupied by stars from this unique cosmos.
In this piece, Dutor and Mont de Palol act as microphones of these names, but from another possibly less tangible universe arising out of their gestures and movements during the performance — for #LOSMICRÓFONOS is a very different nomination exercise from TV game shows. Here, the act of naming is a gesture of assignment and evocation that soon makes way for something else, for another state, a game which invites us to be participants in unforeseen situations.
In exploring every possibility of pronouncing a name, an archive is shown trapped inside a body from which it wishes to escape, recalling the number of melodies — and moments associated with them — we hang on to, ones that can be reactivated with a minor gesture of the body. Just as a smell can take us back to a situation we have experienced, a name is like a door opening into a room, and just one room; one particular song is what takes us back to one precise situation and not another.
Yet in #LOSMICRÓFONOS Dutor and Mont de Palol appear to physically cross the layers of meaning attached to specific names, testing out, through play and humour, and also musically, everything associated with them; thus, it almost seems ridiculous without being so as it shows the volume of such storage.
Jorge Dutor (Madrid, 1979) is a performer and set designer. Trained at Madrid’s Royal School for Performing Arts (RESAD), he has worked in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bilbao and Madrid. His practice is multi-faceted and encompasses light and wardrobe design for plays, films and fashion, organising parties and music events, and DJing, in addition to his work as an actor in different film and art projects.
Guillem Mont de Palol (Girona, 1978) is a performer and choreographer who graduated from the SNDO School for New Dance Development in Amsterdam, where he is currently a visiting lecturer. As a performer he has worked for Xavier le Roy, Mette Ingvartsen, Vicent Dunoyer and Frederique Gies, to mention but a few.
Jorge Dutor and Guillem Mont de Palol have been creating pieces together over the past ten years, for instance: UUUHHH! Yo fui un hombre lobo adolescente inventando horrores (2009), Y POR QUÉ JOHN CAGE? (2011), #LOSMICRÓFONOS (2013), HACER COSAS QUE NOS PERMITAN O NOS ABOQUEN A HACER OTRAS COSAS (2015-2016), Grand Applause (2018), lo pequeño (2018) and Lo mínimo(2019), the last two collaborations with Cris Blanco.
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