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Extreme Experience at Tampere University

Location: Tampere University
Number of days excluding travel days: 10
Period: 11/09/17 – 22/09/17
Level: BA
Number of credits: 1 ECTS
Number of study places: 3 (for incoming NorTeas students)
Accommodation: We will provide students with free-of-charge accommodation (visiting students stay with the regular students, at the institution.) 

Application deadline: 8th of August
Requirements: Bachelor level 2nd year up, acting students
How to apply: Send an Email with motivation statement and transcript of records to:

Template for application
Guidelines for applying for an express course

Course description:
Extremity is most often understood as something physically dangerous like extreme sports. However, the experience of extremity is personal and varies depending on the context (eg. social situation). For example, actor’s bodily action on stage can be externally modest, but at the experience level it might be significant:

"Making an extreme act in performing work is not necessarily reaching for ultimate performance of body or voice, but the extension of the subjective scale of personal physical or social activity." (lecture notes, 2015)

The workshop focuses on exploring the concept of extremity from two directions in the performer/viewer context:

  • what does extreme mean for me and for us?
  • how experimental and cognitive understanding of extremities opens to performer and to spectator?

Bodily observation of exceeding or testing extremity allows compassionate understanding of the other’s limits at an experiential level. Perception of the extreme moment also creates possibilities for a conversation about common experience. (Interviews with extreme athletes have highlighted the quest for a sense of belonging). 

In the workshop we examine the personal limits chosen and defined by each participant. Everybody’s sovereignity and speciality are respected, but we encourage the participants to safely approach the personal boundaries in the context of the workshop even though those might feel uncomfortable and frightening at the beginning. 

During the workshop we will:

  • discuss what can be considered extreme in body/public space/community, what are the personal boundaries and which extremities of this particular group we want to try and explore together.
  • examine and experiment with the extremes chosen by the group members.
  • approach extremes through exercises, the experiences that are awakened from both the observer and the author's point of view. 
  • seek together, through physical reproduction, a breakpoint, personal bodily experience of one's own limit.
  • learn how to use extreme voice and scream safely (Screaming can be experienced as an empowering factor. At high frequencies the boundary of gendered sound may also be blurred.)
  • change extremes with each other. By separating the personality and the act, subjective meanings and possible assumptions might change. 

What kind of skills/training can students expect to achieve (learning outcome):

having completed the course unit the student

  • is aware of the limits of his/her own body and thinking
  • is capable to discuss differencies in experiencing and observing extreme expression
  • has some tools to work with his/her own boundaries
  • Teacher(s): (info about background / specialization)
  • Tiina Syrjä (D.A) is university lecturer in voice and speech at the Degree Programme of Theatre Work, University of Tampere. 
  • Samuli Nordberg (M.A) is university lecturer in movement and dance at the Degree Programme of Theatre Work, University of Tampere.