The online tutorial : a workshop with choreographer and performer Alexandra Bachzetsis

Spring Semester 2015

Monday, March 2, 10 am-5 pm

Tuesday, March 3, 9 am-5 pm

Wednesday, March 4, 9 am-1 pm

Universität / Haute École
ECAL/Ecole cantonale d’art de Lausanne
Alexandra Bachzetsis
Contact email
for student applications
Content description

This program will focus on bodies that move from and towards each other, acting as each other’s mirror image -- yet mediated and unsynchronized. The mirror image becomes a site for transposition where various elements are transferred, leaving corresponding traces. 

Throughout the workshop, the participants use each other as instructional mirrors in their attempts to compose scenes of true virtuosity. The space in which these scenes take place can be a classroom, the staging of an iconic image, or an online dance tutorial, yet what they have in common is that the virtuose can only exist for a brief moment, as if achieved by accident. Then it changes into a different version of itself, more true than its purest original or decomposing in front of our eyes. This exercise is indicative of a desire to belong, to communicate and embed one’s own identity. In this setting of instruction and virtuosity, the participants bodies -- their interior and exterior -- are the vocabulary, grammar, and syntax with which to transfer knowledge and information. Ultimately, they enact their own transposition into each other, blurring the lines of autonomy, individual agency, and the hierarchies between their bodies. 

location : ECAL’s cinema studio 

Ahead of the first day of workshop on March 2, Alexandra Bachzetsis asks that each participant makes a video clip of themselves answering a set of questions taken from, and inspired by, Max Frisch’s questionnaire in his Sketchbook 1966-1971. Think of this video as an online tutorial for someone else to be able to become who you are : film in your home, considering your styling, environment/background, camera setting, and personal attitude, as a performer who is performing your former self. The resulting video may be simple or it may be elaborated - it is up to you. Bring the file with you on March 2.

The questions to film yourself answering are :

  1. Who are you? 
  2. What do you do in life?
  3. Who are you gonna be in 5 years?
  4. What in your opinion do others dislike about you, and what do you dislike about yourself? If not the same thing, which do you find easier to excuse?
  5. What’s challenging for you?
  6. Are you sure you are really interested in the preservation of the human race once you and all the people you know are no longer alive? State briefly why.
  7. Do you need to be loved?
  8. Do you fear death and if so, at what age did you begin to fear it?
  9. Would you rather die in full awareness, or be cut off suddenly by a falling brick, a heart attack, an explosion, etc?
  10. If you love someone, why do you not wish to be the one left behind, but prefer leaving the sorrow to your partner?
  11. What are the things you do at home, but would never do in public or on stage?
  12. Do you look at yourself in a mirror? State briefly why.
  13. What does humorous affinity demonstrate: a) similarity of intellect? b) that two people or more can be alike in their imagination? c) an identical sense of shame?
  14. What’s a compliment you hear often? And what do you think about it?
  15. Do you think one can measure the value of a friendship (even when broken) by its duration?
  16. Which do you fear more, the judgement of a friend or the judgement of enemies?
  17. Are you friends with yourself?
  18. What makes you special as a person?
  19. What’s your biggest fantasy about yourself in 15 years from now?



The number of participants is limited to 15