Cora Mesophyll

Motion Tracking Dance 2012- ATRL, Dublin

Cora Mesophyll is an experimental physical-theatre performance directed and choreographed by Cindy Cummings. Interactive audio-visuals are generated using motion-tracking technologies and biometric data processing.It is set in a bio-fictional world of genetic manipulation and techno- logical ubiquity, where ‘Cora’ (Regan O’Brien) and ‘Jo’ (Cindy Cummings) are confronted with their deep need for connection within the banality of their daily lives. They must negotiate not only the subjective contours of their encounter but also those play parameters of the fluid environment they inhabit. The dramatic experiment is part of ongoing research for Néill O’Dwyer’s PhD at the Arts and Technology Research Lab.

In this project, I composed my text in  response to the working process, the J.G Ballards novel 'Prima Belladonna'. 

All photos taken by Karl Burke.

Performing Patterns

Text score for Cora Mesophyll. Written by Regan O'Brien.

“My Name is Cora Mesophill- and in this story my name infers a subtle connection to the vibrating frequencies of plant life. But I don’t know this yet.

Go to where you are appreciated, and thrive there. Easier said than done.

I am drawn here. It’s like hunger.

Through some special evolutionary process or mutation
I have developed the ability to sense with my entire surface membrane
The multiplicity of connections which are establishing themselves here, between us, as we speak.
Your individual currents, our network system of impulses,
weaving a matrix of perception through which,
we all become complicit
in this experiment.

We are a root system,
A facilitated diffusion of experience, imagination,
understanding, knowledge and attention…… to details. your stories are my story.

I am a singer. My body’s voice is what connects me to others.
Through moments of absurd, hallucinatory projections,
People perceive reflections
Of themselves in my vocalization.  
Though they presume to, they don’t really see me as I,
Only appear to you as you choose to see me.
My skin has been so sensitive recently.
It is my first time here in the tropics.

I’m so thirsty.
I am of nowhere, my parents are from distant places that none of you can have heard of. Their skin shimmered in the sunlight. The songs I learned from them resonate somewhere. Just beyond the threshold of hearing. I move and I remember.

The significance of my back story serves only to inform you that I have nobody. No real human connections. No recognizable roots. But this is a perceptual, timing type of thing, not a sob story.  A series of disposable narratives, An operating system for our communal perception of the emergence of THE story.
What I mean is, my story has yet to manifest.

Conscious mess
IS the human compulsion to make narrative.
We have been waiting for you to activate the process,
And afterwards, we take out the trash,
fish out the moments we connected with,
upload them to the cloud and evolve with it, in a gently unfolding, recursive loop.
Les repetitions.
(2nd Thermodynamic Law of narrative, story doesn’t go anywhere, it just transforms continually.)
And in so doing, we allow the growth of ever-larger strands of meaning
and connection to one another.
The mother tree breathes without pause for renewal.
I”ll hold down the beat and you sing through it.

How is technology rewriting my body?
Our relationship to one another?
our understanding of love? of monsters? of culture?
We make stories so that we can remember.
I monster you. Truly I do…

But do not feel that for this to work, you must attach
yourselves to me. I can already feel the elastic
space between us.”