Performance
A Score of Scores

10 artists. 10 score writers. A score is an old term for ‘twenty’ of something = A Score of Scores.

ARTISTS & SCORE WRITERS
Abedar Kamgari & Naseh Kamgari
Holly Timpener & Enok Ripley
James Knott & Francisco-Fernando Granados
Keith Cole & David Roche
Laura Paolini & Tomasz Szrama
Mikiki & Jan Peacock
Paul Couillard & Elvira Santamaría-Torres
Rita Camacho Lomeli & Alejandro Tamayo
SA Smythe & Autumn Knight
Tanya Mars & Myriam Laplante

Put together by Shannon Cochrane and Francesco Gagliardi

FADO’s spring performance art series invites 10 artists to perform the interpretation of a performance score, written for them by an artist of their own choosing. Artists from across a spectrum of practices grounded in live performance (including cabaret, music, experimental composition, intermedia, video and more) interpret a score designed for them by an array of Canadian and international artists. The duos have chosen to strategize their collaboration in myriad ways—from conspiring together to revealing the final score only moments before the live presentation.

Emerging in the early 1960s in the context of the FLUXUS movement and in conversation with the expanded compositional practices of John Cage and LaMonte Young, “event scores” relied on elements of collaboration, improvisation, and chance to challenge traditional understandings of originality and artistic creation. Often very short, event scores typically consisted of lists of prompts and instructions ranging from the mundane to the elusively abstract and were circulated among fellow artists with an open invitation to interpret and perform them however they wanted. 

A Score of Scores is an experimental back-to-basics platform for artists to create new small-scale work in a spirit of experimentation, collaboration, and agility.

May 12: Performances by James Knott, Tanya Mars
May 13: Performances by Keith Cole, Laura Paolini
May 18: Performances by Paul Couillard, Holly Timpener
May 19: Performances by Mikiki, SA Smythe
May 20: Performances by Rita Camacho Lomeli, Abedar Kamgari

Documentation
A Score of Scores by Keith Cole & David Roche
Artist
Keith Cole

© Keith Cole. High Tea with Keith Cole and Jeanne Randolph, FADO, 2022. Photo Henry Chan.

Canada

Keith Cole is a Toronto-based artist, performer and writer. He holds a BFA from York University (1989) and an MFA from the Ontario College of Art and Design (2012). His interdisciplinary artistic practice is a collision of the forms of theatre, dance, film and performance, and the intersections they create. Cole has appeared in films, television and performance events worldwide and is a recipient of a Harold Award (1999) a National Tap Dance Award (2004), the Roberto Ariganello Award (2007) a Dora Award Nomination for Outstanding Male Performance in a Musical (2008) a Pink Triangle Award (2000), XTRA! Magazine Mouthiest Queer Activist Award (2010). In 2010 Keith Cole was a leading contender in Toronto’s Mayoral Election. He placed 8th in the overall election putting him in the top 10 of well over 80 candidates. He has written for FUSE Magazine, KAPSULA Magazine, The Dance Current, XTRA! dailyxtra.com, Fab Magazine, The BUZZ and has contributed writing to three academic anthologies. In 2014 and 2015 NOW Magazine readers voted him Toronto’s Best Performance Artist. As an independent scholar his research work explores gossip, hearsay, rumours, theft, speculation and appropriation within the contemporary art world. 

Documentation
High Tea with Keith Cole and Jeanne Randolph

Performance
High Tea with Keith Cole and Jeanne Randolph

On September 26, 2021, twenty-six Toronto artists (of a certain generation), on the invitation of Keith Cole, assembled at the Windsor Arms Hotel in Toronto for a High Tea. The guest of honour? Dr. Jeanne Randolph. One of Canada’s foremost cultural thinkers, Randolph is a mercurial character. She is a psychoanalyst, curator, critic, writer, musician, and a performance artist. HIGH TEA with Keith Cole and Jeanne Randolph was, what some theorists or academics might call a work of “social engagement.” For Cole, Randolph and the audience / participants assembled, the jury is out still on whether or not it was even a performance. Perhaps it would be more accurate to think of that afternoon as an event of community (rather than a ‘community event’). The people gathered in the room formed a snapshot of the Toronto arts community from a particular moment, a bit out of focus and dispersed, but collectively felt. Being in the room meant acknowledging the performance of time, of memory and of community. Pinkies up!

Image (above) © Keith Cole, High Tea, 2021. Photo Henry Chan.
Image (below) © Keith Cole, 2021. Image courtesy of the artist.

Performance
Performance Club 2: Valley of the Dolls by Keith Cole

You’ve go to climb to the top of Mount Everest
to reach the Valley of the Dolls.
It’s a brutal climb to reach that peak
which so few have seen.
You never knew what was really up there,
but the last thing you expected to find
was the Valley of the Dolls.
You stand there, waiting for
the rush of exhilaration
you though you’d feel–but
it doesn’t come.
You’re too far away to hear the applause
and take your bows.
And there’s no place left to climb.

Fifty years ago, Jacqueline Susann wrote these opening lines in The Valley of the Dolls, what would become one of the most successful books of its time (with over 31 million copies sold, and counting) making Susann a household name (even if many still read her book under the covers in secret) and bestowing her with the honour of being the first author in history to have three consecutive books in the #1 position on the New York Times bestsellers list. Some might remember the Valley of the Dolls best as the cinematic vehicle for a pill and booze soaked cautionary tale of female ambition, fame, fortune and failure. Despite this, fifty years later the story is still relevant, telling us as much about celebrity culture today and it forewarned us then.

You’re got to climb to the top of Mount Everest to see the Valley of the Dolls, and you’re invited to take this journey with Toronto’s very own performance provocateur Keith Cole in a 5-session book club-cum-academic master class. The first 4 sessions take place in a sprawling hotel room. In Session 5, book club attendees gather with audience to watch a screening of the 1967 film directed by Mark Robson, listen to a key note speech by a secret special guest, and receive their “V of the D” diplomas.

This Performance Club 2 provides participants with a survey of a range of theories and opinions about how we engage, understand and re-evaluate, literary works of art from the past. How do we talk about, feel and learn from a work of art that is still celebrated fifty years after its first release? Our lives are increasingly dominated by visual images on screens but what about the act of reading? The act of discussion? The act of listening? The act of offering up opinions? Have we globally lost the inter-personal understanding of the importance of ideas, the circulation of information and the importance of coming together to identify, contextualize and analyze literary works of art?

The Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann refers to many performance and non-performance outlets. Namely popular entertainment and academic forms ranging from fine art, television, Hollywood, cabaret, camp, feminism, fashion, musical theatre, drug culture, power dynamics and gender politics. All of which will be analyzed in this participant lead Performance Club.

In order to reach a greater understanding of how meaning circulates through our diverse and hectic lives Performance Club participants must first come to terms with 4 items of importance:

  • reading is crucial
  • participation is mandatory
  • attendance counts
  • opinions matter

There is limited enrolment to attend all 4 sessions. The first eight participants enrolled for all sessions will receive a FREE softcover copy of the book. Each week, there will be a limited number of audited spots to attend a single session. These spots also require registration. These spots are PWYC. Auditors attend single sessions and BYOB (Bring Your Own Book).

EVENT & SCREENING
February 27, 2018
The Commons @ 401 Richmond Street West, Toronto
7:00pm: Keynote by Kristyn Dunnion & Graduation
8:00pm: Screening of The Valley of the Dolls

Performance
Vivência Poética curated by Erika DeFreitas

FADO Performance Art Centre’s 2008 Emerging Artists Series, Vivência Poética, pairs established artists with emerging artists in the creation of a collaborative performance work.

ARTISTS
Diane Borsato & Stacey Sproule
Keith Cole & Diana Lopez Soto
John Marriott & Suzanne Caines

“The curatorial premise of this project required an emerging and an established performance artist to collaborate jointly, and in turn with participants within the space in which they work/present. I am interested in the relational aspects within the collaborative process between artists, and how it specifically pertains to questions of authorship, communication, tension, and pedagogy. I am certain that these collaborations will challenge the concept of relational aesthetics as it is outlined by Nicolas Bourriaud in his text Relational Aesthetics.”

~Erika DeFreitas, curator

Performance Yellow

This fragrance opens us to the question, has the show started? It's winter, the theatre is colder than the street and the room is filled with people and all their winter smells: wet faux leather, down, too much shampoo, and beer breath. The atmosphere is a trickster. Am I late, am I early?

Top Notes

yellow mandarin, mimosa

Middle Notes

honey, chamomile, salt

Base Notes

narcissus, guaiac wood, piss, beer