An Educational and Entertaining Theatrical Show on Neuroscience and Technology
Synaptic Rodeo is an interdisciplinary theatrical performance involving neuroscience, technology and art. This show fuses lecture and performance, as neuroscientist Laurel Trainor’s lecture morphs in and out of real and artistic realities. Dr. Laurel Trainor, Founder and Current Director of the LIVELab, plays herself in the production as she gives a lecture on neuroscience. Fused into the lecture segments, artists use LIVELab technology such as EEG, motion capture and active acoustics to portray an attempt to understand human consciousness.
Synaptic Rodeo is a result of a two year residency with an artistic team investigating the possibilities offered by the tools of neuroscience at the LIVELab. The artists use the LIVELab as a technological instrument to reach beyond the standard boundaries of mind and body. The show features the acclaimed innovative artistic team of composer/musician John Gzowski, Juno nominee and winner of 6 Dora’s; dancer/choreographer Julia Aplin; media artist/electronics engineer Jim Ruxton; playwright/actor and two-time finalist for Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama, Anna Chatterton directed by award-winning director Christopher Stanton to create an interactive experience between performance and technology.
Julia Aplin (choreographer) has been dancing and creating dances for as long as she can remember. She has created dance for theatres, rivers, boxing rings and cyberspace. She won the Dusk Dances 2014 Audience Choice Award for “Inner City Sirens Part 2”. She performed around the world with Dancemakers, under the Artistic Direction of Serge Bennathan for 15 seasons. Julia has worked with choreographers Damien Munoz from Spain and Kim Itoh from Japan. She continues to explore her fascination with the human body in motion through dance, healing and teaching.
Anna Chatterton (playwright/performer) is a librettist, playwright and performer. She is a two-time finalist for Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama. Her plays have been produced by the Shaw Festival, Tarragon Theatre, Alberta Theatre Projects, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre and Nightwood Theatre. Anna was awarded the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for Best Supporting Actress, the City of Hamilton Award for Theatre, and has been nominated for five Dora Mavor Moore Awards, winning Outstanding Production of an Opera for Rocking Horse Winner (Tapestry Opera and Scottish Opera). As a librettist Anna’s opera work has been produced across Canada and the States.
Christopher Stanton (director) is a performer, director, writer, sound designer, and composer. His stage work has taken him across Canada to Toronto, Edmonton, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Vancouver, Montreal – and internationally to New York, Bogotà, Munich, Brisbane, Dublin, and Vienna. He has been nominated for 14 Dora Mavor Moore Awards (Toronto) across disciplines, winning in 2017 for his direction of Pomona (ARC), and in 2011 for his performance in New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro). Stanton is the Artistic Producer of Toronto-based indie performance company ARC, and a founding member of Hamilton-based performance makers INDUSTRY.
John Gzowski (composer) Composer, sound designer, musician and instrument maker John Gzowski worked on over 200 theatre, dance and film productions for which he has done composition, sound design, live foley, live music and as musical director. His theatre work has won him 6 Dora’s, from 19 nominations for companies like Stratford, Shaw Festival, Luminato, National Arts Centre, the Mirvishes, MTC, the Arts Club, Canstage, Soulpepper, Dancemakers, Red Sky, Tarragon, Factory Theatre and YPT. As a musician, Gzowski has toured Canadian and European festivals and has played on numerous CD’s, with recent releases with Patricia O’Callaghan, Tasa, and Autorickshaw as well as a Juno nomination with Maza Meze.
Jim Ruxton (New Media) received a Masters in Electrical Engineering from the University of Ottawa. After working as a high frequency design engineer he pursued his interest in the arts by attending the Ontario College of Art and Design . Since then he has worked as an artist and engineer in installation, performance, theatre, dance and film collaborating with many other artists throughout his career. Jim is a founder and former Director of Programs for Subtle Technologies, a 20 year old Toronto based organization that has created links between artists and scientists with events throughout the year. He has been granted numerous patents for this work in LED lighting. Jim is passionate about bringing people together from different disciplines to facilitate work that extends beyond traditional genres.
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