Workshop - An Economic Experience

photos: Emmilou Rößling

The workshop is a crucial contemporary form of knowledge exchange. It involves staging knowledge as a personal experience in a collective setting. Whether in the so-called team building of a company, in a dance workshop or as artistic research. The workshop is sold as an investment in the self and its future.

The performance Workshop - An Economic Experience makes participation in workshops itself the subject of a workshop. The workshop leaders guide the participants through choreographies of a workshop experience using an instructional text: taking up positions of spectatorship, receiving tasks and relating to other participants. Workshop activities are reduced to choreographic patterns. In this "workshop", community is reflected as an economic condition of experience.

"Felix Falczyk and Jens Eschert from the Applied Theatre Studies department in Giessen have developed a kind of meta-workshop with the title Workshop: An Economic Experience, a workshop on how to participate in a workshop. They do not do much else with the participants other than have them walk back and forth between two workshop rooms, each of which contains the typical workshop utensil, the whiteboard. Naming each step matter-of-factly, they instruct the group to divide into two subgroups, which are first distributed between the two rooms, then one joins the other in their room, then the other joins the first in their room - and then the workshop is already over. The procedure reduces the event to the positioning of bodies, the performative skeleton, so to speak. The psychodynamic processes that this triggers in 'normal' workshops may not materialise, but anyone who has ever taken part in such 'normal' workshops has the opportunity here to observe their process broken down to the material level. (Kai van Eikels: Partizipation - Ansprüche und Wirklichkeiten des Politischen in den Künsten, 2018)

By: Felix Falczyk, Jeanne Jens Eschert

Previous dates

Wilsonstraße Performance Festival, zeitraumexit Mannheim

Hüzün-Festival, Kunstverein Montez Frankfurt (Main)

confluence-Festival, DOCH-Stockholm University of the Arts (SE)

Under the Ground Festival, Skopje (MKD)

Exadaktylou Building, Thessaloniki (GR)

CRIC – Festival of critical culture, National Gallery of Macedonia Skopje (MKD)

Theater als Kritik Kongress, Mousonturm Frankfurt (Main) 

Theatermaschine Giessen

Workshop - An Economic Experience was supported by the Institute for Applied Theatre Studies Giessen. Guest performances were made possible by the Hessian Theatre Academy.

© Felix Falczyk, Johanna Herschel 2024.