Video by Kontra RVA.
There are some experiences that transcend your context. Time stands still, as the space within your self begins expanding beyond the cage of your ribs, and it feels as if you are immersed into a transformation of every preconception you formerly maintained. Sure, that sounds a bit hyperbolic but on Monday, May 28, 2012, an experience of this sort took place in a house on the south side of the James. First we shared a potluck meal in the back yard of the Bainbridge Collective, and then, began the sounds and projections of Michele Seippel.
Her work is emerging into an abstracted combination of soundscapes and visuals that are alluring and mesmerizing. She stills the audience with imagery that is physiological and familiar while interweaving samples of voice messages, perhaps from her mother, that draw us into her world even futher. It is calculated and intentional, and it captivates you on a subfrequent wave somewhere deep within your chest. Michele Seippel is precocious, ambitious and stunning.
Next, Briana Marela took the floor and expanded the electricity in the air. Her ambient and melodic sounds are easy on the ears like listening through a seashell to transport your mind to the ocean. She welcomed us into her world, not too distant from where we had been with Michele. There we walked through the fields of wildflowers, a feeling of impending adventure in every step. Briana's work is expansive and compelling, melding strokes of both analog and digital tones to beautiful effect. I was ultimately thrilled and inspired to see two ladies a few years younger than myself continuing the electronic experiments, and building such an inviting environment for their listeners.
There is a mezzanine of experience that can be created at a show. It is something cultivated between the audience and the artists and I think it is ultimately my goal to nurture its presence at any given performance. But it is very challenging to bring about, it requires some combination of the following:
-A carefully-curated collection of artists and their order.
-Respect between the artists sharing the bill.
-An intuition for the unspoken needs of the audience (by the artists).
-A repoire that is carefully unfolded by everyone throughout the course of the event.
Everything about this show culminated into one of these 'magical' experiences. Some of the improvisational turns I was able to take were simply a product of how this mezzanine had opened up, where all of us--on the hardwood floors, couches, along the walls, and under the tables--were dwelling together in this breathless, timeless moment that was uniquely OURS.