Module 8

Performance: Poems in the Soft Space of the Body

In this module you will:

  • prepare to engage in Liz Lerman’s Critical Response Method in workshop
  • create instructions for a performance or show related to your theme
  • prepare for using Zoom for workshop


  • Read and watch the following materials related to Ban en Banlieue with an eye toward what form your project might take when it’s ready to be presented to the public.
  • Preparatory Poems: Write a performance score, a set of instructions, or a description of a gallery that presents your poems (and ephemera where applicable.) If you’re thinking about a straight reading of your work, for this exercise you might wish to adapt Miller Williams’s method of showing rhythm and voice modulation when reading, or you might want to write some of the interstitial commentary that links poems together. You might think about ordering a set list. The important thing for me here is that you’re figuring out what your presentation to your audience looks like and in what spaces that presentation might be performed.
  • Next we’re going to turn toward our workshop method. In the spirit of interdisciplinary learning, we’ll use Liz Lerman’s critique method for our poems. First read the attachment below, then watch the demonstration videos of Liz Lerman’s Critical Response Process.
  • Next, you’ll want to start a list of the order in which you’d like to present your work. I haven’t tried this method yet, so I’m not sure how long each critique will take, but the idea is that you’ll each take turns presenting an individual poem or piece of writing. We may get a chance to share everything you’ve written for this class, or we may only be able to talk about 2 or 5 things. So create a working list of what you’d like to present first. This list may change as we get into our online meetings because we’ll also be writing in class everyday. For each poem or piece on your list, you’ll want to think about how to present it: Do you read the poem aloud in a particular way? Do you want to share your screen so those with video can also see it? Do you want to ask another group member to read the poem? Do you read it twice?, etc. You may also want to say something about why you’re presenting the way you are. In the video you watch, John says, “It’s really important for people to get a good look at it, so I’m just going to walk it around.” Think about how you want us to engage with your work and how your presentation can lead to that. The list you develop is for you. You don’t have to turn this in.
  • Finally, watch this tutorial  about using Zoom. This is the program we’ll use to meet during the residency.
      When you’re done with this module, you can email me your Architecture Workbook and your Preparatory Poems.
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