The discussion around what took place on Sunday is understandable. There has always been a tension between The Story and The Experience. Episode Four was designed to resolve The Story, while Episode Five was designed to resolve The Experience. Through the 300 page journal of Eva, and the letters left in the Repository by Terrance, Beth, and Kelvin, all outstanding questions regarding outcome of significant characters in the narrative had been in some way addressed. Specific details are left to speculation, certainly. The final conflict, then, was about the nature of the Story itself. And after much reflection, this was how we addressed it:
When we reconvened after the 2nd break Antoine Logan acknowledged the absence of Torry Hotprune. "My mother, a child of the seventies, has always appeared or not according to her own whim. This is something I have become very accustomed to." While referring to his own heartfelt disappointment, he was also characterizing the very nature of Nonchalance. Divine Nonchalance will not be scheduled or contained. Just like Eva and her mother before her, they can not be predicted or depended upon.
He then asked all participants to take out their Bio4ce Globes. These balls represented both your resistance to the Institute, and your attachment to The Story. Interestingly, a majority of people chose not to partake in that ceremony, which was specifically designed to acknowledge the process of transformation we were undergoing. To drop the tea ball into the water was to let our apprehension and expectations soften and change. To me, this is where the conflict was. The writing exercise that followed was to allow us to reflect upon everything we'd been through during our journey, and to imagine where it may eventually lead. In this ending of the Story, like a small death, we look back and see our lives flash before our eyes. And what lies beyond this?
Rebirth. The parachute / trance meditation ("Alpha-Pattern Recognises") was meant to be a womb like amniotic submersion from which we could be reborn into a new Story. The flower leis and white wardrobe were to indicate the purity of that new moment. Octavio Coleman's lecture explored these themes.
Where does the fantasy begin and end? What is the real role of the player, performer, and producer? Now what??? We were actively challenged by these questions, and this was the "conflict" we attempted to resolve. The pressure between Antoine Logan and the audience during the tea ceremony, and the dead silence of the room after Octavio's address reflected that tension.
There was an ambition of celebrating all that had occurred since the beginning. We decided to break the story, to obliterating the curtain. Sure, not everyone was ready. The element of the "final mission" to infiltrate the Pre-Screening was meant to flush all that fiction and fantasy from our systems so we could finally come together on Sunday and be more present. The production elements of repetition, echos, deja vu, chaos, and the Droste effect at the Seminar were implemented to provoke a sense of "cascading realities" or the "dream within a dream". They were an experiment intended to disorient one's perception of time and space.
I feel the day was held together through the presence of Antoine Logan (Geordie Aitkin) and Octavio Coleman (Arye Bender). I give them huge credit for standing strong in the face of measurable resistance, and providing many very entertaining moments. This isn't purely entertainment, though. I never really considered it a game, or if it were a game; hopefully a conceptually challenging one. My hope is, that like an interesting film, when we have the Seminar video documentation available, you will be entranced enough to come back and experience it again and reconsider your initial reaction. Either way, I am very appreciative of your trust and willingness to come and dance with us.
aka Bobby Peru