Traviata Salon



2007 | collaborative project with Margherita Isola | (JerMa Collective) | 3 hours | interactive installation, performative space, sound design

Traviata brodery and music :
A performance of four hours in which M. Isola is brodering and disappearing under his work during J. Porsperger is mixing Traviata make it more and more disappeared.

“Traviata” comes from “to lead astray” “ to loose the right direction” “to get lost”. The pretext is the love drama “La Traviata” by Verdi. A drama where the love passion turns into a love obsession. The performer and the Dj put on stage simultaneously their own version of La Traviata; the performer acts an embroidering dance on a white fabric square while the Dj creates a “plastic” mix of “La Traviata”. The audience also plays an active role in the creation and in the development of the performance. The performance space is made of several autonomous little spaces where different interactions with the audience are to take place. The result is that the performance is made out of four different dramaturgical layers : Verdi’s Traviata, the Dj’s Traviata, the performer’s Traviata and the audience’s Traviata.

Verdi’s Traviata :
Violetta and Alfredo are in love. Pressured by her father, Violetta sacrifies their love. It makes her ill with tuberculosis until she dies in her bed, in Alfredo’s arms.

The Dj’s Traviata :
Porsperger creates a sound constellation which embraces the whole performing action without loosing its independency. The Dj creates his mix intervening in a “physical” way on his instrumental set, using objects and performing actions. He creates noises, deformations, loops, adds other concrets sounds or musics. He also uses his voice to make abstract-noises with microphone and and lyrical moments a capella. The sound dimension is essentially based on Verdi’s music, contaminating it with other sound textures. The sound dimension extends from lyricism to “brute” and dematerialized scores until complete silence.

The performer’s Traviata :
M. Isola gives back a mute version of the drama. In this version, there is both a solitude and a body which multiplies itself until it cancels itself out. The elements of the action are a white square piece of fabric, the size of 2mx2m, a naked body with a blue bathrobe, a physical sequence of erotic postures, a needle and a white thread to embroider. The performer acts a physical sequence, based on different erotic postures. At first, the sequence is acted out to outline the different shapes her body assumes on the fabric, using the body as if it were a pattern. Then the performer acts out the sequence again and she simultaneously embroiders in white the shapes outlined on the fabric. The white thread marks and in the same time cancels the body’s traces, which correspond to what is left of the erotic sequence on the sheet about the erotic sequence. The embroidery becomes an abstract dance of writing and dilation. The performer’s Traviata ends when all the traces are embroidered in white, which means they are completely dilated. A camera is set on the ceiling over the fabric square. The camera is connected to a television screen which shows the action from a top perspective. Thus the audience can follow the embroidering dance both live and on screen.

The audience’s Traviata :
When the spectator enters the performance space, he also becomes an actor. His access into
the space corresponds to the sound of two metal knifes clashing together. The performance space is divided in different little spaces where the audience is invited to stay for a while, as a sort of physical representation of the Traviata’s dramaturgical cruxes. In other words, the audience is invited to perform different situations which correspond to some dramaturgical cruxes of La Traviata.
These cruxes are :
– a rectangle made by the flyers of the performance “Traviata-music & embroidering” ,
– an I-pod containing a playlist to which the audience is invited to listen and dance to,
– a black couch where they eat and drink,
– a black and red bed to look around and to lie down on,
– two opposite chairs, in front of which, for one chair, there is the Traviata libretto that can be
read to know the original story of the drama, and for the other, there are some papers on which the audience can take down their thoughts and feelings about our version of the drama,

– a mirror to stare in,
– a megaphone to be used at anytime, to say something, to sing, to scream, to breath or to do

Bruxelles | Bains Connective | 2007

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