Lynnette Moran, Festival Director of Live Collision International Festival
Live Collision International Festival is an annual curated festival of live art.
Presenting some of the most ground-breaking artists of our time, alongside new voices and the next generation of makers from Europe, the UK and Ireland with exceptional work across performance and digital platforms. Live Collision generates a space for
radical experimentation, pushes boundaries and steps beyond accepted conventions. The festival celebrates the integral role of audiences creating multiple invitations with varying proximities across live performance, salons, discursive events, experiential
happenings and parties. The festival programme (artists & artworks) excavate with urgency topics such as class, race, capitalism, political rhetoric, migration, mental health, feminism, identity, gender, sexuality, access, equality and displacement.
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How has your festival been affected by the COVID-19 health crisis?
In response to COVID-19 we have taken the decision to postpone our festival dates. Our priority is the health and safety of our artists, festival team, collaborators, audience and the wider public. We will reshape and reform at a later point in the year
across live performance and digital platforms. For now, we invite audiences to join us in celebrating LCIF2020 through a digital rendering of our intended festival programme. A hybrid festival edition titled, ELECTRIC DREAMS,
the festival that never was — available on our website and across our social media.
Amanda Coogan, Remembering Beethoven as a Deaf Artist
What role did digital content play in your festival prior to this crisis? What informed your decision to present creative work through digital means?
Since the festival’s inception, Live Collision International Festival presents work across both live and digital platforms. As Festival Director and maker my practice over the last 15 years has pivoted around the exploration of audiences proximity to
live performance. In 2005, alongside Kate Craddock I founded the first performance company in the UK to use Skype and other domestic technology as an integrated element of the creation and presentation of live performance. Together we created and
directed over 25 works across live and digital media, presented at Whitechapel Gallery, Southbank Centre, LIFT, BAC, Northern Stage and Wunderbar Festival.
For me it moves beyond the novelty and mechanism of digital space but instead acts as an active interrogation of time, geography, distance, intimacy with a central exploration of ‘what constitutes liveness or a live performance experience — both for artists
and audiences alike — specifically when we are at a remove either physically or conceptually. Digital platforms provide a legitimate space to explore the political, social and cultural distances and proximities that are perpetually at play in our
contemporary world. Digital platforms through Live Collision are an exploration of art through various fields of knowledge and cross-disciplinary forms and practices with a view to introducing live performance gestures and interactions within the
frame of the digital (festival) space. Exploring the inherent interdisciplinary elements of live performance and visual culture; inviting the audience to step beyond mechanisms of a digital space to instead dismantle the strategies of connectivity
as a mechanism to stimulate imagination and allow the viewer to build a critical approach to representation and to stimulate the power of their personal autonomy and authorship within live and digital performance experiences.
Malik Nashad Sharpe, $ELFIE$
What sort of digital content are you planning for 2020?
Live Collision International Festival 2020 has been published as a digital render and will continue to manifest throughout 2020 and 2021 as a hybrid festival edition titled ELECTRIC DREAMS — including live performance and digital happenings; publishing,
podcasting and networked/streamed performances straight to audiences personal mobile devices - all of which will manifest later this year. Together in ELECTRIC DREAMS, with live and digital works propelled by our exceptional festival artists; we will
continue to challenge the parameters of ‘liveness’ and celebrate the artistic intent of festival, artists and audiences alike. I look forward to reshaping the festival over the weeks and months ahead and I am certain the forms, in which it will manifest,
will reflect the rigour and integrity of our festival artists and community alike.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of presenting work in this way?
As makers and curators it is our intention that is key — how and why we make work, and how we set our invitation to audiences and readers of our work is the primary concern over output and pollution of digital space. Presenting live work through a digital
platform, can potentially extend the reach of our festival audiences — expanding our invitation to those who are at a remote or geographical distance. As well as, providing multiple entry points to our festival programme for audiences with varying
interests and modes of engagement.
However, I believe we must afford digital space the same consideration we offer our theatre and galleries spaces — spaces that are inherently loaded with meaning. The audience’s role and how we meet an artwork should be intentional and specific to the
form of presentation. Digital spaces also have inherent assumptions around access and are often thought to be fundamentally more democratic. However that is not always the case, and the cultural associations and privileges of digital space must be
interrogated. Artists, curators, programmers, commissioners etc must engage with the form in a critical way for work to be rigorous and meaningful in digital space.
Jenny Roche, Expanded Fields
How do you see digital work playing a role in the future of your festival?
Digital work is fundamental to our festival programme and will continue to be. Live Collision sets out to connect artists and audiences to a wider global network of artist and audiences who are concerned and preoccupied by the provocations of the festival.
Digital spaces have afforded us the opportunity to connect a hyperlocal audience and community around the festival to a wider public and context. In the times we find ourselves, whereby we are being asked to be socially distant, the active exploration
of closing down distance and finding intimacy across digital space is an ongoing experience for most people in their everyday lives. We are spending time measuring and assessing the strategies that can connect and engage us beyond ourselves - discovering
our own parameters around such experiences and accessing how successful we find digital modes of connectivity. All of which will have a profound impact on how we continue to connect into the future, as well as, how we will continue to select and curate
our cultural experiences in the future. We are collectively growing a digital vernacular, aptitude and understanding that far exceeds the ingenuity of digital platforms but instead is linked directly to our human need and experiences of living.
All of us, now more than ever, understand the need to build a dexterity between nurturing both our local and global community. Festival’s have always had a very specific role in forming and establishing communities around concepts, ideas and experiences.
The festival is the future of how we will continue to shape our individual and collective experiences and I’d imagine we will all be forever changed as a result of the experience we are having right now. Inevitably this will have an affect on the
art we make, the frameworks we engage and modes in which we continue to journey towards one another as a society, as a people, as a collective generation of our time. Artists are in the best place to interrogate such shifts and together we will continue
to explore digital work to find the ways in which we can come closure to the ‘live’ experience.
For more information on the Live Collision festival, its programme and digital initiatives, please visit www.livecollision.com