8. Internationales Interaktionslabor

Medienforschungsschwerpunkte im Sommer 2010 / Research Areas for summer 2010


(english) (german)

August 16 - 22, 2010


EMPAC presents first summer lab for interactive media in performance, to be held August 16-22 at the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center. Directed by Johannes Birringer and Mark Coniglio, the workshop offers intensive training and possibilities for experimentation with mixed reality and real time architectures, programmable environments, interactive design and the integration of time-based media into live performance and installation.

The workshop addresses emerging and professional art practitioners, scientists, researchers, and students from different backgrounds in performance and new media committed to sharing their interest in developing a deeper understanding of composing work focussed on real time / interactive or time-based experiences and multidisciplinary collaborative processes (video, sound processing, projection design, lighting, choreography and directing).

Participants will be in residence for the duration of the lab and offered first class facilities at EMPAC for investigating performance and design techniques that will develop skills and inspire new ideas for working in mixed realities and interlinked physical/virtual or distributed aesthetics. The workshop will include examples and references to international stage works, choreographic systems, installations and site-specific works, as well as hands-on experimentation in full resolution with interactive systems.

Methodologies for the laboratory are conceived by theatre director and media artist Johannes Birringer, founder of the annual Interaktionslabor and professor of performance technologies at Brunel University (London), and Mark Coniglio, artistic co-director of Troika Ranch and creator of the Isadora software. Both artists are widely recognized for their pioneering work in the international performance and media network. Interaktionslabor was last offered on tour in Belo Horizonte, Brasil (2008), and Birringer’s and Coniglio’s work has been featured in numerous festivals and exhibitions around the world.

The activities of the lab are open to visitors, and information about the proceedings and the research process can be found on the EMPAC website

Résumé and informal letter of application were due: June 30, 2010.

Contact: Hélène Lesterlin: lesteh@rpi.edu / tel. 518.276.3918


More information:
Skill requirements: Intermediate/advanced experience in performing with audio/visual technologies and/or programming. Previous experience with Isadora or Max/MSP recommended. This workshop is geared for those already working with technology but wishing to improve their skills and get new perspectives.
It is recommended that participants bring rehearsal clothing and their own laptop and other tools (camera, recorder, etc.). Digital equipment will also be available.


HOUSING: Participants in the workshop will be able to choose from several shared or single on-campus housing options, or may organize their own housing while in Troy.



Johannes Birringer

Johannes Birringer is an independent choreographer and media artist. As artistic director of AlienNation Co., he has created numerous dance-theatre works, videos, digital media installations and site-specific performances in collaboration with artists in Europe, the Americas, China, Japan and Australia. He has taught at several universities in the US, including Yale University, Rice University, and Northwestern University, and in 2000 he created the new Dance & Technology MFA at Ohio State University. His books include Theatre Theory Postmodernism (1989), Media and Performance (1998), Performance on the Edge (2000), and Performance, Technology, and Science (2008). In 2005 he co-edited a book on dance and neuroscience (Tanz im Kopf/Dance and Cognition). As co-founder of ADaPT (Association for Dance and Performance Telematics), he developed a number of online performances in the early years of this century; his contributions to online collaborative networks were recognized by ars electronica in 2005. He has won numerous awards and commissions, and taught workshops in performance technologies and composition in many parts of the world. In 2003 he founded the international Interaktionslabor Göttelborn in a former coalmine in Germany, initiating long-term research into interactive systems and real time theatrical processes. In 2006 he was appointed professor of performance technologies at Brunel University in London, where he directs the Design and Performance Lab. Recent production include the digital oratorio Corpo, Carne e Espírito, premiered in Brasil at FIT Theatre Festival (2008), and Suna no Onna (2007-08), an interactive dance work created with his London-based lab featuring wearable designs by fashion designer Michèle Danjoux. His new mixed reality installation UKIYO will go on European tour in June 2010.

Mark Coniglio

Recognized as a pioneering force in the integration of dance and media, composer/media artist Mark Coniglio creates large-scale performance works that integrate music, dance, theater and interactive media. With choreographer Dawn Stoppiello he is co-founder of Troika Ranch (http://www.troikaranch.org), a dance theater company committed to creating hybrid, media intensive performances. As Troika Ranch, they have been honored with a New York Dance and Performance "Bessie" Award, an honorary mention at Prix Ars Electronica, and the "Eddy" award from Live Design magazine.

From the start, Coniglio's artistic practice has included the creation of custom interactive systems that allow performers to manipulate video, sound, and light in real-time. His first technological breakthrough came in 1989 when he created MidiDancer, a wireless system that allowed a performer to interactively control music. His passion for giving control to the performer led him to create the award-winning software Isadora®, a flexible graphic programming environment that provides interactive control over digital media. Isadora is now the tool of choice for hundreds of artist's worldwide including such notables as The Wooster Group, Morton Subotnick, Bebe Miller and the Royal Shakespeare Company.

A native of Nebraska, he received his BFA degree in music composition in 1989 from California Institute of the Arts where he studied with electronic music pioneer Morton Subotnick. From 1990-94, he taught courses in interactive music at CalArts and was an integral member of the Center for Experiments in Art, Information and Technology. Coniglio is the recipient of two consecutive ARM Fellowships from Dance Theater Workshop (2004/05) and was facilitator for that program in 2006. His writings about new media in performance have appeared in numerous books and journals, including "New Visions In Performance", "La Scena Digitale: Nuovi Media Per La Danza" and Movement Research Journal. He relocated from New York to Berlin, Germany in 2008.



The Curtis R. Priem Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) opened its doors in 2008 and was hailed by the New York Times as a “technological pleasure dome for the mind and senses… dedicated to the marriage of art and science as it has never been done before.”

Founded by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, EMPAC offers artists, scholars, researchers, engineers, designers, and audiences opportunities for creative exploration that are available nowhere else under a single roof. EMPAC operates nationally and internationally, attracting creative individuals from around the world and sending new artworks and innovative ideas onto the global stage.

EMPAC’s building is a showcase work of architecture and a unique technological facility that boasts unrivalled presentation and production capabilities for art and science spanning the physical and virtual worlds and the spaces in between.

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is the nation’s oldest technological university. The school offers degrees in engineering, the sciences, information technology, architecture, management, and the social sciences and humanities. For over thirty years, the Institute has been a leader in interdisciplinary creative research, especially in the electronic arts. In addition to its MFA and Ph.D. programs in Electronic Arts, Rensselaer offers Bachelor degrees in Electronic Arts, and in Electronic Media, Arts, and Communication – one of the first undergraduate programs of its kind in the United States. The Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies and EMPAC are two major research platforms
that Rensselaer has established at the beginning of the 21st century.









deadline for enrollment : June 30, 2010.




Further notes on design and performance concepts are published on this site.





Participants / Teilnehmer




Allgemeine Beschreibung des Labors/ General Description of the Lab
(english) (español) (francais)