French choreographer and dancer Jérôme Bel will inaugurate the BMW Tate Live Performance Room with a new work that is a twist on his 1997 performance Shirtology and which will emphasise and play with the Performance Room format. The work will feature one performer and a collection of T-shirts that are changed and removed to display different messages. Bel’s work explores the relationship between choreography and popular culture; and dancer and spectator, often using humour as a device to break the usual formality of a theatre setting.
Audiences, who will only be able to view the performances on the internet, are invited to enter the online Performance Room at 20.00 hrs in the UK and exactly the same moment across time zones on the specified dates i.e. 15.00 hrs on the East Coast of America, 21.00 hrs in mainline Europe and 23.00 hrs in Russia. One performance will take place live each month within Tate Modern to be filmed as it happens for live online broadcast around the world. The performances will be followed by an online question and answer session with the artist or curator.
This innovative format will offer audiences internationally an opportunity to experience these works through an entirely new mode of presentation. Each performance will be archived and available to view online, accumulating into a series through the year.
Jérôme Bel is a choreographer and dancer who lives and works in Paris. Bel’s work explores the relationship between choreography and popular culture, alongside that of the dancer and spectator, often using humour as a device to break the usual formality of a theatre setting. Key early works include nom donné par l’auteur (1994) Jérôme Bel (1995), Shirtology (1997) and The Last Performance (1998). His work The show must go on 2001 featured over twenty performers who interpreted the title of the pop song, chosen by a DJ, through their actions (this won a Bessie Award in New York in 2005). More recently he has begun a series of works that look at the history of choreography through the autobiography of an individual dancer. For example in 2004 when Bel was invited to produce a piece for the Paris Opera ballet he created Véronique Doisneau 2004, a theatrical documentary on the work of the dancer of the same name. More recently with Cédric Andrieux, he traced a history of contemporary choreography through dancer Andrieux’s experiences.
BMW Tate Live Performance Room: Performance dates and time in the UK*
22 March, 20.00 – BMW Tate Live Performance Room #1: Jérôme Bel
26 April, 20.00 – BMW Tate Live Performance Room #2: Pablo Bronstein
31 May, 20.00 – BMW Tate Live Performance Room #3: Emily Roysdon
28 June, 20.00 – BMW Tate Live Performance Room #4: Harrell Fletcher
Mid July / Sept, 20.00 – BMW Tate Live Performance Room #5: Joan Jonas
*Times listed are for the UK. Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) ends and British Summer Time (BST) begins in the UK on 25 March so times are listed as BST except for 22 March.
BMW Tate Live is curated by Catherine Wood, Curator, Contemporary Art and Performance, Tate, and Kathy Noble, Curator of Interdisciplinary Projects, Tate.