No-How Generator

No-How Generator_Graphics by Victoria Ford

No-How Generator (2019)

No-How Generator embarks from the question: If knowledge-generation is a fundamentally embodied process, can we see and experience it happening in a dance performance?

Performed with Katye Coe and joined by a different guest performer each time, No-How Generator invites you to experience a ritual-like performance that connects scientific perspectives on embodied cognition with more magical ways of knowing, such as divination, alchemy, shamanism or hypnosis.

With both seriousness and gently subversive humour, the work reflects on a dance performance’s potential to serve as a collective experience where particular forms of knowing are conjured into being — for performers and audience members alike.

First performed in 2019, No-How Generator has been created through Sperling’s artistic doctoral research process. Seating is on cushions and chairs around the performance space.

Visit the stand-alone No-How Generator website to explore this body of artistic doctoral research, made up of the choreographic work and a written thesis.

Choreographer and performer: Matthias Sperling

Collaborating performer: Katye Coe

Guest Performers to date: Jennifer Lacey, Fernanda Muñoz-Newsome, SERAFINE1369 / Jamila Johnson-Small

Lighting and space designer: Jackie Shemesh

Clothing designer: Alexa Pollman

Clothing Fabricator: Mabel Luz Flores

Sound Consultant: Joel Cahen

Producer: Iris Chan

No-How Generator has been supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, Midlands4Cities, Dance4, Siobhan Davies Dance and Sadler’s Wells.

Performances: 10 October 2019, Nottingham Contemporary (Nottingham, UK) as part of Nottdance2019, presented by Dance4; 24 November 2021, De Montfort University (Leicester, UK); 21-22 April 2022, Sadler’s Wells Lilian Baylis Studio (London, UK).

Work-in-progress performances: 6-7 January 2019 (solo version), Future Oceans/ APAP, Marlene Myers Theatre (New York, USA); 25 January 2019 (solo version), Slade School of Art (London, UK); 3 March 2019, iC4C, Dance4 (Nottingham, UK); 22 March 2019, Siobhan Davies Studios (London, UK); 30 March 2019, Eintanzhaus (Mannheim, Germany); 12 April 2019, Per/Forming Futures conference, Middlesex University (London, UK); 28 June 2019 (solo version), Cracking the Established Order conference, De Montfort University (Leicester, UK).

In this series of four short ‘No-How Q&A’ insight videos created in 2019, Matthias Sperling and Katye Coe talk about No-How Generator :

No-How Q&A No.1: on the title ‘No-How Generator’

No-How Q&A No.2: on ideas of ‘Magic & Science’

No-How Q&A No.3: on how audiences are invited to experience the performance

No-How Q&A No.4: on the relationship between dance performance and embodied knowledge-generation in this work