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University of Ljubljana
Faculty of Arts
Department of Ethnology
and Cultural Anthropology
Aškerčeva 2
SI-1000 Ljubljana
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Conferences and other Events

AN INTENSIVE WORKSHOP - Performativity and Ritual: Crossroads

Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology organizes
AN INTENSIVE WORKSHOP - Performativity and Ritual: Crossroads
held by Radharani Pernarčič, Sonja Zlobko and Rajko Muršič, PhD, full professor/reader 
27th – 29th March 2010
At the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in Bratislava
Address: Moyzesova 4, 813 15 Bratislava, Slovak Republic

Costs: There is no workshop fee. A van will be organized by the epartment, which leaves no travel expenses for the students. Accommodation will be arranged at a hostel (approx. 30 Euro).

The workshop will be in English (in case if needed, translations into Slovenian and Slovakian will be assured).

In the time when contemporary anthropology increasingly dips-into and produces knowledge about practice and embodiment, while contemporary dance theatre faces numerous questions of performativity and dance dramaturgy, it becomes obvious that the two can establish a constructive interdisciplinary link. The up-coming workshop has its bases in a dance project Polne sob s priprtih hodnikov which was successfully carried out in autumn 2009 in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and had thoroughly integrated anthropological research into a dance performance. Whether the collaboration proved such interdisciplinary work to be very fruitful and powerful, it has also raised many further important questions as well for anthropologists as for choreographers and performers. In attempt to further investigate options of applied anthropology in dance theatre and mutual efficacy of such disciplinary collaboration show the workshop will focus on:
• Examining a new role of anthropologist in theatre – linking choreography, dramaturgy and performing.
• The role of anthropology as a container of specific knowledge which can help creating coherent content and context by elaborating meanings and symbolization within an abstract movement expression.

As a pilot project for integrated study of anthropology and anthropological researches, the workshop aims at combining students and professionals of both disciplines and build an international network, as a widely useful base for further collaborations. The reason more to start such interdisciplinary workshop in Slovakia lies also in the specific socio-political experiences, which both countries have been sharing – similar in the past and even more unified nowadays. Providing a wider context, these shared experiences can also be seen as a junction point of possible re-evaluations in both fields.  

In hope to develop and articulate methods or problems, relevant for both disciplines,  and create a model of efficient practice of interdisciplinary collaboration, we are now kindly inviting you to join the workshop.

*Non-performers may choose between active (performative) or “passive” (observing & analyzing) way of participation.

For applications (or any questions) about the workshop, please send an e-mail with your full data (full name, education/profession, whether you are a performer or non-performer) to the following addresses:
Radharani Pernarčič: rpernarcic@gmail.com or Sonja Zlobko: sonjazlobko@gmail.com

The workshop is one of the chain-actions in continuing attempt to combine anthropological practice and performative arts. In 2007 the organizers, Radharani Pernarčič and Rajko Muršič, PhD, first started by applying somatic dance skills to anthropological fieldwork methodology in a workshop at the 2nd Konitsa Summer School in Anthropology, Ethnography and Comparative Folklore of the Balkans, Konitsa, Greece. Later in 2009, Radharani Pernarčič and Sonja Zlobko established a successful collaboration between an anthropological research project Comparative analysis of Slovenian anthropology within European research space: past, presence and future at the Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology, Ljubljana and a dance-theatre project Polne sob s priprtih hodnikov. There, the application was reversed, aiming at integrating anthropological knowledge into a dance performance. The sequence has continued by a lecture about the process and possible cooperation of disciplines in 2009 in Koper, Slovenia and is now looking for ways to build further international and disciplinary dimensions within the up-coming workshop Performativity and ritual – Crossroads. Furthermore, the latter will also serve as a springboard for the coming performative project In so ribe tiho visele z dreves (by Radharani Pernarčič in collaboration with Sonja Zlobko) in Ljubljana, November 2010. 

As the main subject matter or “material” to deal with in both disciplines is a human being, or larger “social drama” (as V. Turner put it), anthropology and contemporary theatre appear to be mutually complementary fields. In the frame of the chosen theme, the workshop will focuses on elements, principles and states, which form different rituals and create a sense of rituality. Based on the anthropological analyses of a few chosen rituals, the knowledge will be put into practice by performers, examining ways how such knowledge can be beneficial to create a performing material and the structure of a performance. The aim is to create a different way of anthropological engagement, where anthropologist actively participates in the very creation of the event - observes and contributes knowledge at the spot and therefore mutually influences the shared result.  Finally, discussing the process at hand by putting it in a wider context, the lecture and a round table will also show how every performance process may as well be mutually informative in researching social phenomena at large.

“Rituality and ceremoniality”:
- What are general characteristics of human rituals?
- How is a meaning constituted by and within a ritual?
- What is a role of performativity, intensity, presence when doing the ritual?
- Isn’t every performative entity in the theatre ritualistic as well and in what way?
- How to create new “rituals” in theatre and how can that help to structure an art work?

The work will comprise three parts:
• Presentation and analysis of a few chosen rituals
• Two days of practical workshop
• A short lecture and a round table

Presentation (by Sonja Zlobko):
• A short presentation of a chosen topic and anthropological knowledge about it;
• Description of chosen rituals and analysis of constituting elements;
• Discussion on principles applicative for creating performative material, leading into practical tasks.

Practical workshop (by Radharani Pernarčič):
• Practical exercises in which theatre and anthropological methods meet and create performative material – based on the elaborated elements;
• Practical work by which created material will be put into a coherent scene (image);
• Reflective discussion;
• Short presentation of images.

Lecture (by Rajko Muršič, PhD, Sonja Zlobko) and round table (by all three lecturers):
• Process and question raised in the ground project from Ljubljana;
• Issues emerging in the workshop and future possibilities of interdisciplinary collaboration.
• Social context: “social drama”
• Presence and ethnographic present: experience and the present


Day 1 – 27th March 2010
Presentation and practical workshop:

1. Morning class
• 11.00 – 11.30   Coffee & introduction
• 11.30 – 13.00   Presentation of the topic (Rituality and ceremoniality)
Introduction of rituals, elements and principles

2. Afternoon class
• 15.00 – 16.30   Warm-up, movement research
• 17.00 – 18.30   Structuring and coordinating movement material
 with previously elaborated principles

Day 2 – 28th March 2010
Practical workshop:

1. Morning class
• 10.00 – 11.30   Warm-up, practical exercises to draw
the material towards rituality (intensity, embodiment)
• 12.00 – 13.30   Reflection, further practical work to make
images (short “rituals”)

2. Afternoon class
• 15.30 – 17.30   Structuring and contextualizing images

Day 3 – 29th March 2010
Practical workshop & Lecture, roundtable: 

1. Morning class
• 10.00 – 11.30   Finalizing the images
• 12.00 – 13.00   Presentation & reflection

2. Afternoon lecture
• 15.00 – 16.30   Lecture (Ritualistic practice and “social drama”)
• 16.35 – 18.00  Round table
• 18.00: Drinks & chat
• Departure to Slovenia


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