Stool Pigeons by Gravity Feed 1997

12 Sep 1997 : Sidetrack Theatre, Addison Road, Marrickville, Sydney, Australia

Gravity Feed treads the thin line between confession and treachery. Created for a performance evening at Sidetrack’s Contemporary Performance Week 8, Stool Pigeons was based on several images. The expression stool pigeon in American gangster movies referred to someone who betrayed others to the police. Here the term was used also in the sense of a sitting duck, someone who is exposed without protection or cover. We used folding camp stools and white bed sheets as the materials with which we developed our choreography. So the act of folding was primary. The characters were like waiters, also recalling the films of the Marx Brothers. The sheets allowed us to revel and conceal. Rik Rue created an uncharacteristically funny sound track for this work.

What is meant by elimination? Consider this; stool pigeons are often “eliminated” in gangster movies. At the opening credits the stool pigeon has been rubbed out. Dale Jamieson, The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 1986, p.186

What is really treacherous is that language has made you think that there is a reality that is there in hiding prior to the comunication of it.

  • notes to the performers from William McClure

Project Details
Dates 12 Sep 1997 to 13 Sep 1997
Duration 20 minutes
Collaborators performed by: Denis Beaubois Ari Ehrlich Tim Rushton Alan Schacher Jeff Stein Dramaturge/ co-director: William McClure Sound artist/ composer: Rik Rue
Producer CPW8, Sidetrack Theatre and Gravity Feed
Category ensemble
Credits Performers: Denis Beaubois, Ari Ehrlich, Jeff Stein, Alan Schacher ; Sound composition : Rik Rue ; Documentation: photo : Heidrun Löhr ; Video: Peter Oldham