An oft-used phrase in contemporary popular culture, “iconic performance” suggests a performance that transcends its particular time and place. And yet it can also imply a performance that registers – and even comes to represent – a particular cultural moment. But what exactly makes a performance “iconic”? The star? Acting style? Writing? Story? Some combination of these? With its etymological traces of idol worship, the word iconic tells us something about our veneration of stars and our desire to see them perform in extraordinary ways. Studying performance also reinforces the powerful function of fictional characters to illuminate truths that might otherwise remain obscure in the more mundane scenes of our everyday lives.
Join us every other Tuesday evening this spring in FFB-11, where we’ll watch six iconic performances and consider what makes them both inimitable and enduring.
All screenings will begin at 17.45. Worth 20 GE points
2 February: Groundhog Day (Harold Ramis, 1993)
Introduction by Colleen Kennedy-Karpat, Department of Communication and Design
16 February: The Man Who Fell to Earth (Nicholas Roeg, 1976)
Introduction by Kitty Aal, Independent Scholar
1 March: A Woman Under the Influence (John Cassavettes, 1974)
Introduction by Joanna Mansbridge, Department of American Culture and Literature
15 March: Johnny Guitar (Nicholas Ray, 1954)
Introduction by Daniel Leonard, Program in Cultures, Civilizations, and Ideas
29 March: The Big Lebowski (Joel and Ethan Coen, 1998)
Introduction by Hande Vural-Johnson, AMER/COMD
12 April: Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1974)
Introduction by Spencer Hawkins, Program in Cultures, Civilizations, and Ideas