TELLDRILL is an ongoing choreographic project encompassing film, live performance, text, and digital image-production.
The project choreographs the linguistic/verbal, gestural, and material functions of "TELL" and "DRILL" (below) into a set of problematic situations which meet, counter, and convolute notions of control and surveillance in both live performance practice and its documentary ephemera.​​​​​​​
Accumulation layers told telling a direction or explanation architecture settlements upon ruins over time becoming a mound an order to speak or reveal a confession
Rehearsal or routine following regimen learned behaviour winding and digging boring a hole or fixing two things together with a screw for military precision or in case of emergency
The first iteration of the TELLDRILL project, TELLDRILL1, debuted 15 June 2022 at the historic Capitol Cinema (Melbourne) for the public programming of Agent Bodies, an exhibition at RMIT Gallery curated by Mikala Dwyer and Dr. Drew Pettifer. In 2022 it was also screened publicly with the Performing Dress Lab (Melbourne/London/Helsinki), by Foreign Objekt (San Francisco) for the virtual exhibition XENNOVERSE, and at Bus Projects (Melbourne) for Mega-Phone Mono-Poly facilitated by Liquid Architecture and Debris Facility Pty Ltd.
TELLDRILL1 was co-performed by Alexander Cahill, Charlie Kol, Jessica Phippen, and Jonathan Vyssaritis.

Excerpts 00:02:04, full film 00:09:09.

TELLDRILL1 is a performance film which collates the archived actions of performer and documentary crew; a framework of production folded inward toward a symbolically abstracted queer body disseminated across multi-embodied surveillance. This process is directed toward an excision and choreography of the screen as a surface of representation – a cutting and editing of the bounds of image-production in choreographing problematic dynamics of control across performance rehearsal and cinematic construction.
DRM wears shreds of green-screen fabric on their palms and soles, pressing into the floor of a dance rehearsal space as a site-policing "sniffer dog", filmed and recorded by a team of documentarians (whose bodies are also captured in both the footage and audio). The inward cupping of their tongue, revealing its underside, blocks DRM's mouth, creating a slurping, sniffing rhythm of "redacted" vocalisation which is looped in post-production as the soundtrack for the film.
With the in-studio rehearsal and filmic post-production both performing the TELL/DRILL score, an iconographic code emerges in the material re-working of agency dispersed across obscure relations of direction, action and capture. Silicone earpiece sculptures, worn by both DRM and the documentary crew, serve as parasitic devices of encoded logics and blind spots, while other commons of form are revealed and iconised to self-reflexive extrusions of a nested choreography: tongue, screw, curl, loop, cup. hook, puncture, scaffold, pass, carry, leak, bloom, sniffer dog. Mirrored sculptural forms loom in the black cinematic negative space: scaffolds of earpiece coils, screwing through dog-tongues curled back upon themselves as petals of vessel-like blooms.
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