Programm│Workshops│Heike Roms

Workshop I
Heike Roms (Aberystwyth) | »Echo/Ortung (Echo/Location): Performing and Locating Memories in Oral History«

Südseite | Karl-Heine-Straße 55 | 8. Februar 2013 | 15.00–19.00 Uhr

The figure of Echo suggests a close relationship between practices of repetition or reiteration and their expression through voice and narration. It is this relationship that the workshop will explore by focusing on a particular instance of vocalized reiterative and narrative practice: that of ›oral history.‹ What and how does oral history remember? How is memory mediated through the practice of conversation? What is the specific manner in which memory becomes present through a dialogue with a listener, a document or a location? How does the voicing of memory reveal gaps, fragmentations and forgetting? How does oral history relate to other archival practices? And how can the oral history conversation, itself a performative format, help us to remember past performance work?

The workshop will introduce several recent examples of oral history projects devoted to performance, foremost among them Heike Roms’ own extensive oral history project into the history of British performance art in the 1960s and 1970s. The project has developed a range of innovative, performative approaches to oral history: conversations staged in public, collaborative modes of remembering, site-specific interviews, oral histories linked to re-enactments. These approaches have been inspired by certain artistic practices – the underlying proposition is that such artistic strategies can provide models and strategies for an art historiographic practice.

The workshop will provide an opportunity to try out some of these approaches in action, especially those concerned with location. Oral History is here to be defined as a sounding out of those echoes in the memory of artists and audiences that are put in motion by performance.

The workshop will be organized in co-operation with Marcus Quent.

Heike Roms is Senior Lecturer in Performance Studies at Aberystwyth University. She has published widely on contemporary performance practice, the history of performance art in a British context, performance historiography and archiving, performance and ecology and performance as a mode of knowledge formation and dissemination.
Heike is director of »What’s Welsh for Performance? Beth yw ›performance‹ yn Gymraeg?«, a project focussing on the historiography of early performance art, which utilizes a range of performance-based methodologies for historical research, and that won the David Bradby TaPRA Award for Outstanding Research in International Theatre and Performance 2011.

Workshop Description