audio-visual interactive performance

concept: MASH
audio: Magnus Alexanderson
visual: Sachiko Hayashi
max-jitter programming: Sachiko Hayashi

others involved:Chris Cutler, Hikaru Uzawa, Hisashi Uzawa, Yoko Yamamura

thanks: The Experimental Television Center, New York, Naoya Mura, Yoko Fukuoka, Yasuyo Hirai


[beyond] is an interactive audio-visual performance by MASH (Magnus Alexanderson and Sachiko Hayashi). Its interactive components (audio - visual) are linked via a computer programme (Max/Jitter) as well as via human perception to achieve flexible and yet complex structural audio-visual composition.

Moreover [beyond] is an amalgam of various human expressions both on personal and collective levels. The divisions that have been inherent in our world - tradition/new, composition/improvisation, West/East, machine/human - are all fused in [beyond] as essential part of personal histories of the performers.

The audio, EAM performed live via midi-guitar, sampler, signal processor and looper, is based on various existing practices and experiences to compose and perform music. To find flexibility and create a mobile structure, the music is neither improvised nor completely notated; it is a combination of instrumentation of sounds prepared uniquely to its moving imagery and flexible execution of those sounds unpredetermined in time and manner.

The visual focuses on 3 female Noh theatre players, filmed in Tokyo 2006.

"Noh is a traditional Japanese theatre which dates back to 14th century. This national cultural inheritance, with components of dance, music and poetry, has been handed down for six hundred years exclusively by male Noh players who play the parts of both sexes while participation of women has been strictly forbidden. During the 20th century, however, there was an increasing number of female Noh players, undaunted by the condition, to perform Noh theatre themselves, thus challenging the notion of "the norm" in the world of Noh. 2005 saw a pinnacle year in this process when the Japanese government granted several of these female Noh players the status of National Treasure, a status given to those who have made immeasurable contribution to Japanese culture. Recognition of female Noh players by the state meant that they were no longer considered amateurs but officially accepted as professional Noh players. Today these female Noh players, though still few in number, are active performers, some with their own companies. In 2006, I flew to Tokyo to film three of these women (one of them being granted "national treasure" status) for this project. The filmed footages then underwent manipulation on several historical analogue video synthesizers at the Experimental Television Center in New York, 2008, before being further processed in Jitter as an integrated component of the interaction."

[beyond] was originally conceived with Chris Cutler.

shown at:

Norrköpings Konstmuseum, Sweden, 2008

IDKA, Gävle, Sweden, 2008

Norberg Festival, Sweden, 2010

Sound of Stockholm, 2010

Skånes Konstförening, Malmö, Sweden, 2011

Landmark, Ny Musikk in collaboration with BEK, Bergen, Norway, 2011


[beyond] -excerpt- performed live at IDKA, Sweden, 2008 from Sachiko Hayashi on Vimeo.