OBJECT COLLECTION / TRAVIS JUST, KARA FEELY, DANIEL KÖTTER, ELISA LIMBERG
“NO HOTEL” is an opera performed simultaneously live and on film. Both the live performance and the film take place within a hotel room constructed onstage. It is a project that bridges music, theater, video, performance, and installation.
A hotel is a suspension and simulation of life. It is a location where an individual’s tastes and eccentricities become subsumed within a uniform aesthetic. It is a bedroom for commerce. It is a place where everyday living has no consequence: you don’t need to clean up after yourself, take out the trash, or worry about bothering your neighbors. A theater is also a suspension of life and a simulation of life. It can be all of the things that a hotel is, but you don’t necessarily go there searching for comfort. We wanted to examine the tendency toward theatrical, voyeuristic, and bad behavior within suspended and simulated spaces.
We collaged dramatic scenarios and dialogues from classic hotel films such as Goulding’s “Grand Hotel,” Warhol’s “Chelsea Girls,” Godard’s “Détective,” and Fassbinder’s “Beware of a Holy Whore,” seeking to effectively transform the hotel’s standardized architecture into a space for fictional, spectacle-oriented activity. As the piece progresses, the performers become increasingly radicalized, taking on the dramatic scenarios but exaggerating, dismantling, and finally defiling them. The theater becomes a site of riotous disorder: the ultimate hotel in which life is suspended, but no comfort can be found.
The music for “NO HOTEL” is composed of 200+ miniatures (and one extended 11 minute section) that use a wide range of notational approaches—from fully notated material to graphic scores and semi-improvisational text scores. The vocal music is composed, though often without specified pitch. Rather, the music deals with relative high/low, vocal contours, speed of delivery (as opposed to metric rhythm), and a variety of types of speech (whisper, falsetto, shout, etc).