Composer John MacCallum and Choreographer Teoma Naccarato are currently engaged in a practice-based research and creation project, which examines temporal relationships between internal, bodily processes with human movement and mediated environments. Central to this interdisciplinary investigation is a positing of the body as a process, through which individuals perceive, construct, and express time based on a bleeding of internal and external influences. The major categories of investigation in this project include:
- Performance-based experiments with biosensors to explore the temporal behavior of internal, bodily processes in relation to one another, and with physical movement and environmental stimuli;
- Software development of a facile choreographic and compositional framework for real-time performance with biosensors, including software tools for the visualization of biometric data, and of complex relationships between score time and it’s realization in performance; and
- Hardware development of a wearable, wireless electrocardiogram (ECG) unit, appropriate for extensive and irregular physical activities, such as contemporary dance.
Ongoing research will provide a foundation for the creation of performances in which each dancer wears a wireless electrocardiogram (ECG) device, from which data is processed and transmitted as a click track for a corresponding musician. The activity of every dancer will be choreographed to generate intentional arcs in heart activity over time, according to the prescribed, polytemporal score. Biofeedback, in the form of the music, will heighten kinaesthetic awareness and potential beyond familiar practice. Compositionally, the use of biometric data in performance will magnify the latent complexities in the relationship between a score and its realization, allowing for the exploration of a continuously variable window of musical time. The intervention of biosensors in this choreographic and compositional process will continually redirect and reinvent the questions, experiments, and material being generated.
The interdisciplinary scope of this research has inspired collaboration with performers, designers, engineers, scientists, medical professionals, and philosophers in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Early developments in the project, by way of artistic research residencies, have been presented at events internationally.