A refreshing noise for a change

A refreshing noise for a change

Humans have the tendency to block out the voices in their head. But when it’s a synthetic voice giving you directions to explore your own City in a way you’ve never seen before, it’s tough not to succumb.

An experience-based event called ‘Remote Bangalore’ by German theatre collective ‘Rimini Protokill’ not only erased inhibition from its 50 participants, who were wearing headphones, but also took them through the lessons of life by adding soundtracks to streets, hospitals and churches and turning them into temporary stages.

From walking through a school yard as one heard a class in progress to walking backwards on MG Road to running down Church Street as part of a demonstration, it was a unique two-hour walk through every nook and corner of Bangalore. In fact, the sheer oddity of the interactions with the public and group members made it an even more liberating experience.

“It took us through some amazing alleys that we otherwise may not have seen. I wasn’t very surprised by the whole thing but the fact that one could use sound was fascinating. There were also some interesting moments of surprise,” said Ekta Mittal, a participant.

On another level, it also created a new space for thought and observation. A variety of subjects like evolution, religion, how we allow our mind to be conditioned and the progress of humanity were explored. At the end, a silent roof-top party awaited the participants.

“For me, the high point of this event was to experience a city and be aware of it while doing so. It was unique and innovative and I loved the journey from childhood to adulthood. A lot of my thoughts were verbalised by the voice and it was nice to know that somebody thinks like me,” said Indira Bharadawaj who attended the event.

Naresh Narasimhan, an architect, added, “It’s an unusual way to look at a City because the way you experience what you see becomes unfamiliar. I was amazed at how we turned chaos on the streets into theatre and made actors out of normal people. It was liberating while it happened but disorienting when it ended.”

Stefan Kaegi, who conceived and directed the event, was overwhelmed by the response.

 “After conceptualising this for Bangalore, it took us a few weeks to get everything in place. We kept taking the same route every day till we started discovering certain features that allowed the element of precision and wonder to come in.

I feel that people are often afraid of public spaces because they are too loud or dirty
or not ideal for art. But it’s good to disturb the regularities of public spaces,” he shared.  The event is on every evening till February 16. For details, call 9243100911.

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