Polyphony: A Collection of Collaborative Projects was an integrated performance event featuring multiple artistic forms and performers. The choreographies, musical compositions, scripts, visual art pieces, and theatrical designs were created in tandem so that every piece became a collaborative sum of its parts.
This event was the culmination of research in interdisciplinary compositional terminology by Rachel Switlick entitled, “Words Interlacing Works” as part of her dual-degree studies at The Ohio State University in English and Dance. Switlick devised four categories of “Purpose,” “Method,” “Theme,” and “Structure.” In the creation of Polyphony, these categories were used to facilitate conversations amongst the thirty-plus individuals involved. Each collaboration began with a discussion of the proposed “purpose” of each piece with the reasons and goals of the project. The “method” of making the work formed through scheduling studio time and navigating the shared creative processes. “Theme” brought focus to choices of aesthetic, setting, and motif. Finally, “structure” formed as the pieces were finalized and performed.
Receiving full funding of The OSU Arts and Sciences International Research Grant, Polyphony occurred in Mount Hall Studio Theatre in Columbus, Ohio during March of 2013. Switlick hopes that this experience can provide insight into future collaborations.
Rachel Switlick completed her BFA in Dance and BA in English at The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio. Rachel has traveled to Costa Rica, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, and the Czech Republic for various artistic research and performance opportunities. Her research in interdisciplinary artistic terminology, "Words Interlacing Works," was recognized at the 2013 Denman Forum for Undergraduate Research. Her co-choreographed piece, "Everything Before I Asked and She Said Alright," was awarded the City of Prague choreography prize at the 2012 New Prague Dance Festival. She is currently pursuing collaborative performance work in the New York City area.