A THERMAL
PERFORMANCE

A piece for two actors and a thermostat (voiced by a computer)

The two actors stand, facing one another as if in a game of chess, or war-strategy game – they use the lines of dialogue as strategic moves, seeking control or collaboration of or with one another, or the machine. It is not clear whether the performers are real, or in a computer simulation: the actors are dressed in Chroma-key blue.

The performance is a language game, sparring and parrying with words; the script is derived from dictionary entries, idioms, word-games and metaphor. The topics cover anger, desire and productivity.

The personas invoked by the phrases are derived from the world of TedTalks, Google Campus, Silicon Valley Start-ups. They are entrepreneurs, idealists, motivated, passionate about what they do.

But there is a double meaning in the text, since all of us, in the wake of the erosion of welfare, pensions, jobs for life, are also expected to be entrepreneurial, motivated and passionate about our work and - following the logic of this ideology - flexible, precarious - and readily exploited.

Performances of this work are taking place at the Chelsea Theatre in January (on-stage reading) and a Video piece in the RCA School of Architecture Work-in-Progress show in February 2016.



contact: claudia.dutson [at] network.rca.ac.uk

ACTOR
I warm you

REACTOR
I thaw you

ACTOR
I heat you

REACTOR
I melt you

ACTOR
I stoke you

REACTOR
I ignite you

ACTOR
I cool you

REACTOR
I quench you

ACTOR
I inflame you

REACTOR
I incense you

ACTOR
I freeze you

REACTOR
I burn you

ACTOR
I chill you

REACTOR
I ice you

ACTOR
I scorch you

REACTOR
I singe you