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VOICEVocal Aesthetics in Digital Arts and Media$
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Norie Neumark, Ross Gibson, and Theo van Leeuwen

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780262013901

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262013901.001.0001

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Voice, Dance, Process, and the “Predigital”: Simone Forti and Yvonne Rainer in the Early 1960s

Voice, Dance, Process, and the “Predigital”: Simone Forti and Yvonne Rainer in the Early 1960s

Chapter:
(p.119) 7 Voice, Dance, Process, and the “Predigital”: Simone Forti and Yvonne Rainer in the Early 1960s
Source:
VOICE
Author(s):

Meredith Morse

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262013901.003.0007

This chapter examines how thinking about voice makes it possible to access a history of conflated bodies and processes, the matrix it calls the “predigital.” Focusing on the dance performances of Simone Forti and Yvonne Rainer, who introduced the voice into a previously silent art form in the 1960s, it argues that the dancer’s voice was especially useful in countering the notions of dance forms which relied on the congruence and unity of interiority, expression, and movement. Rainer targeted the expressive self in its capacity to communicate feeling and the human condition, and replaced it with her new model of the “neutral doer.” The work of Forti and Rainer foreshadowed the digital in a number of ways, including their exploration of vocal sound as bodily movement and their focus on modularity rather than cohesion.

Keywords:   Simone Forti, Yvonne Rainer, voice, dance, predigital, bodies, processes, neutral doer, expressive self, vocal sound

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