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an audio-visual performance in situ

HeartBeat is a performance collaboration between dance artists susanna ylikoski and Ariel Hayun, and musician César Balleyguier: where they share an auditive-imaginary of the dancing body. The work premiered, by commission, in Christian Awe’s HeartBeat exhibition, in Kunsthalle Rostock (2020).


In the work, a microphone has been inserted in the tube of a stethoscope that is then taped to the skin,

capturing the sounds coming from inside the body of the dancers (such as heartbeats and the sounds generated by different movements). Through a receiver, the musician uses these signals to trigger different parameters on a synthesizer. The musician and the dancers interact by using the live composition of the sounds of a body. The sounds that are normally hidden become audible, placing the dancers in a situation of exposure.


The performance traverses the museum and gallery sites, demanding from the spectators a different attention to both themselves and their meeting with the environment. This relocates the spectator’s habitual perception of space, enhancing the uniqueness of what a body can tell by its being when made audible.


The performance questions, how does sound inform, affect, and transform the embodied image of the bodies in situ. The synchronous act of sharing the movement and its sound, creates a paradoxical world: where we are forced to be both the observer and the observed: namely meeting with the impossibility to coincide with one another and oneself. By making audible the points of emissions, trajectories, and durations of movements - a prevalence of sound is created in the performance space. When the act of listening has become primary: how do we then, perceive and respond to information, and through that produce and circulate meaning?


In the past shows, the artists observed together with the audience: How – when both the inner and outer rhythms and movements are exposed – the spectator tunes into an awareness of the performer’s body, and in turn into their own body. Through this heightened awareness of perceiving oneself together with the other, the process of imprinting memories and listening to their resonance becomes actively lived through. The intimacy of witnessing the total soundscape of someone tends to reconnect the spectators to forgotten primordial sensations from the earliest stage of being, inside the womb of their mother.



Concept & Painting: Christian Awe

Performance Concept: susanna ylikoski & Cesar B.

Music & Composition: Cesar B.

Dance & Choreography: susanna ylikoski & Ariel Hayun


Premier: HeartBeat. Kunsthalle Rostock, Germany 2020

Further shows: I, SEA. Kunstverein Cobourg, Germany 2021 

Perspectives. Kunstverein Weinheim, Germany 2021


Press material:

KunstOrte-mv Newsletter



Stefan Haehnel

Video Material:

Received from a spectator

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