Meeting Place - Music Theatre Landscape
“Meeting Place - Music Theatre Landscape” is an artistic development project where the theatre group Himlabacken since 2006 collaborates with Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts and SLU Alnarp (Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Alnarp) and Malmö Academy of Music.
The focus of the project is how music and theatre experiences can meet landscape and how they can enrich each other creating new forms of experiences, and how to make the audience participate as creators of these.
The project also investigates how to develop cultural projects in a rural landscape and how this can be of artistic value and become an important tool in getting back meaning to areas that are to become abandoned by people and commercial activities. This creates a milieu where performance becomes part of the overall experience of the landscape and the landscape becomes part of the narrative.
Interdisciplinary master course
The project has implemented a MA course in devising for stage artists and landscape architects who wants to expand and create meeting places and activities where the audience will meet stage art blended with the landscape as equal partners. The idea is to investigate the process of creating a site-specific work and develop the collaboration between different methods and languages. The question is; How can an artistic experience meet an experience of a landscape and create a participant audience rather than a just observing audience. The artistic students come from a wide range of experiences (they can be directors, lighting designers, actors, writers, choreographers and performance artists) and the interchange between them have shown to be very interesting.
Meeting place - Music Theatre Landscape investigate the relationship of space and audience and how this leads to the meaning of the landscape not as a backdrop to a performance but as starting point of the action.
The project is planning for an international MA together with ESMAE in Porto, Portugal and the University of Winchester, UK.
An international model
The project is now developing and testing a new model for place specific but not place dependent experiences/performances in the intersection between performing arts and landscapes, building on local resources and a process oriented work model with participation from artists, local community as well as audience. The model is so far developed to create a new field of cultural/landscape experiences at the same time as it contributes to local development of rural areas as well as urban. The aim of the project is to develop and transfer this “model in development” to an international level, building on the differences in tradition and local contexts in the different countries, deepening both the artistic content and the local development opportunities.
The work is done in close cooperation between artists and universities in the participating countries, and will consist of a series of seminars and practical artistic workshops, disseminating and adapting the model for national/local context, sharing experiences and preparing for future performances and development projects in the participating countries using the developed model.