Padmini Chettur
Basement 21 presents Pause/Play
At Goethe Institute
Nov 21 & 22, 2014 Chennai

November 16, 2014

PAUSE / PLAY is a Basement 21 curated event at the Goethe Institute, Chennai.

November 21 & 22, 2014
 3.30pm to 8.30pm.

As actions, pause and play are associated with the choice of suspending a flow of activity to create a small rift in time. In this interim period, our experience of ourselves and things around us becomes magnified and immediate.  Basement 21, a collective of contemporary practitioners, proposes a series of artistic interruptions at the Goethe Institute in a playful, yet thought-provoking structure.

A brief glimpse
A group of parkour artistes scale the outer wall of the Institute while musicians provide the score for their movement. Four musicians perform a whispering quartet in the library. A singer engages students in a classroom with a composition by Schumann. From the spiral stairway behind the building come sounds of a quartet played live at different levels.

A large group of dancers are seen crawling along the outer parking ramp in synchronised time. Later they move in unison on the stairway while from the elevator comes periodical bursts of Bach by a group of musicians playing live.On the floor of the foyer is a film of walking feet filmed within the building as well as around the socio-economically disparate neighbourhood of the Goethe Institute in Chennai. The sound of musicians playing a quartet from autorickshaws takes over your senses as you stand in the lobby.

Above the entrance to the building, four musicians sit playing a score that is visible on the window across from them. In the auditorium is a mix of film, dancing and music. An installation of fragrances greets you as you walk through a corridor. A dialogue of text and music is heard as you pass through another. A riot of plant saplings occupies centre-stage on the second level.

As the day draws to a close, on the terrace, a mix of experts from a wide variety of backgrounds like law, environment, medicine, mathematics, politics, art and culture await you for rounds of quick and intense conversation.

Maarten Visser

Anoushka Kurien

The core team of Basement 21 are domain experts in various fields of contemporary expression. From music, dance, dramaturgy to conceptual art and installation, this project features the work of widely-acclaimed names such as Maarten Visser, Natesh Muthuswamy, Padmini Chettur, Pravin Kannanur and Preethi Athreya among others. Collaborating with Basement 21 is the Chennai Parkour team, known for their agility, speed and strength. Together, a team of twenty five artists, comprising of dancers, musicians, athletes, actors and writers come together to bring a new synergy within the building of the Goethe Institute. The program also has an exciting panel of experts, seated at the terrace, waiting to draw the public into interesting conversations one-on-one. Some of these experts include Mr. Panneerselvam, The Readers’ Editor, The Hindu, Dr. Ramanujam, Professor Mathematical Research, Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Devika, attorney at law on medical malpractice, Rakesh Khanna, Blaft Publications, pulp fiction in translation.

This project has been produced with the support and cooperation of the Goethe Institute, Chennai. Goethe-institut, the cultural institute of Germany worldwide, has been promoting Indo-German cooperation and friendship for 54 years now. Through its cultural initiatives, the institution reflects a variety of ways of living, thinking and acting. 

Pause/Play, curated and conceptualised by Basement 21
Music Composition: Maarten Visser
Musicians of the Quartet: Aman Mahajan, Jeremy Woodruff, Suresh Bascara, Maarten Visser.
Choreography: Padmini Chettur
Dancers: P Akila, Anoushka Kurien, Aditi Bheda, Madhushree Basu, M Palani, Chandran, Ramya, Hema.
Film Installation: Preethi Athreya
Plant installation: Aditi Bheda, Madhusree Basu
Installation & Art Design: Natesh Muthuswamy
Parkour Artists: Prabhu Mani, Vignesh, Vishwa, Vishal and Baskar
Musicians: Harish, Ranjith, Rituraj.
Dramaturgical and Technical facilitation: Pravin Kannanur
Volunteers: Nancy Boissel Cormier, Mrinalini Sekar