performing thoughts and ideas

You have something to say and you want to say it publicly but you are not happy communicating your special message using the traditional  public speaking or presentation genre – what are your options?

You could create an oral communication performance; a performance in the style of an installation which can be held on a platform or creative space anywhere.

You could create a live sound image.

‘Installation art is an artistic genre of three-dimensional works that often are site-specific and designed to transform the perception of a space.’1

‘Performance art is a performance presented to an audience within a fine art context, traditionally interdisciplinary. Performance may be either scripted or unscripted, random or carefully orchestrated; spontaneous or otherwise carefully planned with or without audience participation. The performance can be live or via media; the performer can be present or absent. It can be any situation that involves four basic elements: time, space, the performer’s body, or presence in a medium, and a relationship between performer and audience. Performance art can happen anywhere, in any type of venue or setting and for any length of time. The actions of an individual or a group at a particular place and in a particular time constitute the work.’2

Thoughts and ideas forming part of a debate can be powerfully communicated in an oral communication performance. The form is ideal for ideas that demand to be dealt with differently.

It may be that the traditional platforms – public speaking, conference presentations, lecture and the like, simply won’t do justice to the message. Or worse, that the thoughts and ideas become trapped in a form that is prescriptive and predictable.

Public speaking, oratory and presentations are designed to control the information exchange between the author and the audience, neither of whom may be present at the time.

Public speaking, presentations or lectures are intended to create an agreeable message that can be recorded and delivered contemporaneously and/or historically. Lectures and presentations are static and replicable. Thoughts and ideas communicated orally are released live into the public arena in search of a protagonist.3

An oral communication performance is a creative exchange of thoughts and ideas where ownership serves no purpose.

© 2016 pamela neil all rights reserved. unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to pamela neil with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. 




  1. Wikipedia
  2. Wikipedia
  3. protagonist – a proponent or advocate of a method, idea, or course of action; a support of a cause.

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