One of the highlights of the SENE Film, Music & Arts Festival was the performance of The Spectacle. The combination of creative original music with thought provoking images on film presented a unique sensory experience that was enjoyed by our audience which included independent filmmakers, musicians and artists. Regardless of your position on the political spectrum, their “story” hits home with current events images that seem to transition with each note emanating from Eric’s guitar solos. I wish we would have scheduled another performance so that more festival attendees could enjoy the unique experience that is The Spectacle.
The Spectacle is nothing less than extraordinary. As far as rock concerts, visual effects and social commentary go, this experimental work of performance art has hit every mark. Writer, producer and performer Eric Goodman took a leap of faith and hit the nail on the head. This brilliantly staged display gives you an opportunity to step back and see something about our technological-driven society that you may be blind to—even though it’s right in front of your face. This performance presents cultural aspects of our society in a way that is sharp, smart and visually astonishing. This is a show that young people can and will rally behind.
The Spectacle is simply one of the most intelligent attempts to resurrect public discourse on the sorry state of our mass mediated culture that I have ever seen. And the music rocks, too.
The Spectacle succeeds on all accounts, [turning] the very imagery of the spectacle against itself. The song ‘Know Your Rights,’ by The Clash, begins with Joe Strummer declaring ‘This is a public service announcement…with guitars!’ And had Eric Goodman chosen to begin The Spectacle with a similar declaration it would have been true—for what his performance presents is a vital ‘public service announcement’ that comes accompanied by guitar and drums. The Spectacle reveals what the spectacle truly says—and reminds the audience that they need not keep listening to its commands.
The Spectacle was definitely a mind boggling experience that grabbed my attention as soon as I entered. The creators of this ominous, exciting “spectacle’ explained how America is corrupt from its roots and it has poisoned our generation and maybe more generations to come. The music was definitely key in making the viewer absorb and understand the destruction and deceitfulness that has plagued America in the 80’s until today. The guitars solos were powerful to amp up the presentation, which made the performance very entertaining. The experience was mind shattering and I question now every commercial and news channel ever.
The Spectacle is rooted in classic critiques of modernity and mass culture from Nieztsche to Mumford to McLuhan to Debord to Chomsky. In conjunction with these texts, The Spectacle raises particularly interesting questions that can be followed up in the classroom. Particularly, students can evaluate the show’s attempt to use the methods of the spectacle to critique the ‘society of the spectacle’—can the master’s tools be used to tear down the master’s house? Is the message separate from the medium? This is rock and roll that might get people to read a book—think about exactly how rare that is.
This collection of video clips brings to light a problem plaguing our race. So many of us believe the spectacle is reality, we deny ourselves the right to think on our own, outside the spectacle. I really enjoy and appreciate what you are doing with The Spectacle.
In an age when almost everything about us—from our loftiest aspirations to our most intimate feelings—is programmed by technical images, is there a way to play jujitsu against the images, using their own momentum to foil their own agenda? The Spectacle models an exhilarating way of doing so. It is tactical, fragmatic, and awakening.
Media criticism should not be limited to print or text in this multi-mode media era, and The Spectacle provides a model of multimedia media criticism that is outstandingly effective and relevant.
The event was a stunning success, thanks in no small part to your involvement. Your performance was compelling and well received, and the subsequent discussions were thought provoking, making the Propaganda in the Media installment a worthy addition to the Educate Yourself series.
The performance of The Spectacle was a very stimulating and thought provoking experience. It sparked a discussion that went beyond the gallery and into the classroom and the community.
The Spectacle presents an interesting approach to some of the core ideas of Postman and McLuhan that combines music with ‘found’ media footage edited in provocative and creative ways to form an alternative critique of our media environment. I do think that it would be of interest and relevance to our students.