Gastón A. Alzate


June 21, 2011
Soulemayne Mbodj In this interview with Gastón Alzate, Souleymane Mbodj discusses several issues relating to the interweaving of performing cultures. These include the unity of literature and the performing arts in Africa; his views on African and Western philosophy; his experience playing Bach’s second prelude in C minor with Lebanese and Armenian musicians; the appropriation processes and cultural fractures resulting from colonization; and the essential value of black music in the Americas for African communities to recover cultural ties shattered by the slave trade. He shares his thoughts on the crossroads and divergences between Africa and the West regarding ways of thinking and conceptions of art. read more
April 13, 2011
I see "interweaving performance cultures" as a flexible perspective to inquire into the cultural adjustments, ambiguities, and misalignments performative events produce and manifest. I consider it meaningful that performance is mentioned instead of art – although art is certainly included – which shows such inquiries are not circumscribed to an elitist definition of art nor to a field with the official approval stamp of the academies. Thus, "interweaving performance cultures" in my view refers to a rigorous inquiry into the cultural complexities of human actions – as creative forms that enter into a dialogical relationship with others – that does not start from a single prescribed ideological, philosophical, aesthetic, or theoretical model. read more