Bethany Ides

© Bethany Ides, 2023. Photo Ron Hester.


Bethany Ides sets precarious parameters wherein roles & resources play actors & places as if everything extends itself uncertainly. In 2014, she founded DOORS UNLIMITED, a roving vessel for investigative operatics that proliferates communitarian-collaborative strategies for provisional-conditional experimenting with/in soap opera, encampment opera, opera-within-opera, telephonic inter-drama, dismantlement, dialectics, days & nights & both as neither, near-death, opera in bed, opera in spite of itself, opera in excess of itself, ante-institutional allusions, elations, protrusions, performance, sticks, schools, stone squares, soggy cereal blankets, very long songs, backlog, & tends to tender tendencies like mountains, fake hair, carpet squares, contact paper, play mats, currency, fluidity, emails, &/or all elaborate uncertainties.

Her multi-phasic, month-long opera, Transient’s Theme, premiered at the Knockdown Center in 2014, following a 2-month connective-convective convocation or composition involving 80 participants at a campground in the Catskills. Ides’ performance or installation-as-proposition work has also been presented for/at Mandragoras Art Space (MAAS), Fragmental Museum, St. Marks Poetry Project, Dixon Place, the Brooklyn Museum Sunview Luncheonette & PS122 in New York, CounterPULSE in San Francisco, Tritriangle in Chicago, Worksound & Half/Dozen Gallery in Portland, OR, Concordia University in MontrĂ©al, as well as for BOMB Magazine’s Instagram account.

Ides/DOORS UNLIMITED curates festivals or conferences, writes articles or poetry, records songs, builds buildings, makes meals, plans plans, & takes up temporary residence where/when invited.  Ides likewise teaches itinerantly at Pratt Institute, Bard College &/or wherever calls, & currently calls Austin, TX home.

Performance Academy 1: Inconsolable Solvency with Bethany Ides

FADO Performance Art Centre is pleased to offer the first iteration of our newest recurring series Performance Academy, with Bethany Ides’ Inconsolable Solvency, taking place at our new home in The Commons @ 401, over three consecutive Sundays in September. 

What extra-sensory signals do we exchange when we trade money for goods, services and conveniences? How out of whack would a transaction have to be in order to hardly be recognizable as such? Would it—could it—seem like something else entirely? Like love? Like devastation? Like relief?

In this workshop, we will be troubling the methods of assessment and valuation we rely on every day in order to manage and/or mitigate our senses of security, trustworthiness, likability and fairness. Participants will work collaboratively to re-interpret and re-model concepts like “efficiency,” “transparency” and “trust,” by inventing tools for dissolving those social structures that depend on them. During each meeting, individuals and smaller clusters will propose experimental contracts or modes of currency for possible use by the group as a whole. Readings will be distributed and short process/speculative writing will be assigned each week. This workshop is offered free of charge. There is no fixed monetary cost, other kinds of equitable exchange are welcomed and encouraged. 

Inconsolable Solvency is presented in three sessions. If you cannot join each of the sessions, that’s okay, but it is preferable that participants make a commitment to attend at least two of the sessions. This workshop is open to all participants of all levels of study and/or experience (including just plain curiosity).

Bethany Ides’ Performance Academy is presented in conjunction with, in relationship to, and in the context of the work she is developing at HATCH entitled Deathbeds. Described as an opera created in community, Deathbeds is a multi-platform work about desire as a contested resource and the ways various commodification compulsions affect romantic and economic ecologies alike. And how harrowing matters get when we try to break through all that–how funny but also jittery, how dizzyingly everything becomes blur the more emphatically we expect the expiration of the patient, Capitalism. With accelerated excitations, we imagine a body on the brink and tend to it even as we call for its demise.

Performance Academy

FADO Performance Art Centre newest recurring performance series takes on the abstract form of a school, a university, a workshop, a class or a course, in the form of our own homemade academy. 

Performance Academy is a platform in which artists constitute their own school of learning—performing pedagogy—for an audience in the form of peer-to-peer academia, where self-organizing and personal experience as knowledge is valued over institutionalized frameworks. Artists, writers and creative thinkers from the performance art milieu as well as adjacent practices such as curation, social practice, film/video and more, develop and offer mini-courses (of three or more sessions disseminated over several weeks) presenting ideas and covering a range of topics and  that each facilitator is already an expert in (however one might define “expert”).

Performance Academy is not a workshop and it’s not a school either. It’s best understood as a public engagement opportunity with an artist who is invested in inverting notions of authority in practice, research, and pedagogy. Through a sustained commitment to collective learning, Performance Academy transforms the concept of a course into a group performance. A workshop in the form of a performance; a performance in the form of a school.

Curated by Shannon Cochrane

Performance Academy 1
Inconsolable Solvency with Bethany Ides
September 10, 17 & 24, 2017

Performance Academy 2
Performing the Critique with Dino Dinco
October 11, 18 & 25, 2017

Performance Academy 3
Good Bodies with Cindy Baker
December 16, 2017

Series Purple

An ode to FADO's history, Series Purple is composed of a collection of purple fragrance materials dating back to the Roman Empire. Dense, intense, and meandering, this fragrance tells us non-linear stories.

Top Notes

huckleberry, violet

Middle Notes

cassis, lilac, heliotrope

Base Notes

orris root, purple sage, labdanum