DISPATCH - NOV 7, 2013


Summer has passed but there's plenty of noteworthy performances taking place at Watermill Center. This fall, the line-up of artist residency presentation is a strong one with many productions heading toward already scheduled performances in noteworthy venues. There's one more unusual caveat--it's free to attend.

Watermill Center kicked off its Fall lineup of public events with "THE SUNDANCE KID IS BEAUTIFUL". The piece is a theatrical staging of the legendary "Einstein on the Beach" librettist and writings by artist Christopher Knowles', performed by Knowles himself. A special Open Rehearsal was held last month at Watermill Center. The performance is now on its way to an international tour of the work that launches at the Louvre Museum in Paris later this month as part of its "Living Rooms".


Christopher Knowles in performance. Photo by Tom Kochie.


"THE SUNDANCE KID IS BEAUTIFUL" unfolds in a multimedia environment that incorporates recent poetry and sculpture. There are also elements of rarely-performed pieces from "Einstein on the Beach".

"The performance combines elements of a theatrical vocabulary with Knowles's delicately patterned texts to create a scenography that extends the structured logic observed throughout his two and three-dimensional practice into a performative domain," according to Watermill Center.


Christopher Knowles in performance at Watermill Center. Photo by Tom Kochie.


Christopher Knowles in performance at Watermill Center. Photo by Tom Kochie.


Tonight, the Watermill Center presents a "sold-out" presentation and screening "Debra McCall: Lecture and Screening of Oskar Schlemmer's 1920s Bauhaus Dances. McCall will recount her story of reconstructing the 1920s Bauhaus Dances of Oskar Schlemmer, explain the philosophy and work of Bauhaus artists, and screen a film of her reconstructions.

McCall was tasked with uncovering the original notes and sketches thought to have been lost during World War II. She searched museums and archives in West Germany before venturing into East Germany to visit the restored Bauhaus.

The Bauhaus—a school of art, crafts, and technology founded by the architect Walter Gropius—embodied the zeitgeist of 1920s Weimar with such faculty as Paul Klee, Lyonel Feininger, and Wassily Kandinsky. Schlemmer's early Bauhaus "lecture-dances" were to later inform the avant-garde work of Merce Cunningham, Robert Wilson, The Grand Union, Laurie Anderson, and David Byrne.

Next week, Watermill Center presents Dance Heginbotham: Fly By Wire. The event is already "sold out."  The dance is a work-in-progress set to the music of American composer Tyondai Braxton. It is set to premiere on Feb. 20, 2014 at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. At its premiere, the piece will be performed live with the adventurous new music chamber ensemble Alarm Will Sound, who are the 2013-14 Artist in Residence at the Metropolitan Museum.

Beyond this, performances held at Watermill Center are available to attend. They include "Cynthia Hopkins: A Living Documentary" Open Rehearsal of the work-in-progress on Dec. 7 at 7 p.m. The piece is a comedic, no-nonsense reflection of the trials and tribulations of earning a living as a professional theater artist in the 21st century.

The piece intertwines elements of musical comedy, autobiography, documentary and fiction, with live interviews interspersed with portrayals of semi-fictional comedic characters. At its heart is a myriad of questions about the realities of professional artistic life in New York City.

The next Open Rehearsal to follow will take place on Jan. 4, 2014 at 7 p.m. and will feature "Ibrahim Quraishi: Lost Codes." The artist intends to explore the relationship between bodies and objects and the ritualization of both, through the collection at The Watermill Center. The Open Rehearsal will reveal the findings and the new work in progress.

BASIC FACTS: The Watermill Center is located at 39 Watermill Towd Rd, Water Mill, NY 11976. For information and reservations, visit www.watermillcenter.org.


Copyright 2013 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.

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