Redundancy


Redundancy refers to “a situation in which something is unnecessary because it is more than is needed”. According to Katherine Profeta in Dramaturgy in Motion, the role of a dramaturg in dance and theater is redundant and overlapping to many existing roles like the director, choreographer, critic, producer, etc. This redundancy, as Profeta states, “is a major source of definitional frustration” and “implies waste within a putative Taylorist system of efficient artistic labor.”(13)
However, Katherine Profeta uses a quote from Heldegard De Vuyst and an example of Mark Bly’s to argue that this redundancy is not necessary wasteful but has a significance in allowing more creativity and possibility in different processes. De Vuyst, the dance dramaturg for Alaim Platel said that being unnecessary in a process gives “a sort of freedom and playground to stand on.” Mark Bly uses an example of the evolution to share his idea that the moments of “one for two”(one organ performing two functions) and “two for one”(one function performed by two organs) helps achieve deeper complexity and more possibilities in evolution, and while the role of a dramaturg often embodies these moments, it does the same for dance(13). While the dramaturg performs multiple roles and share a single role with others, this specific role of a dramaturg guarantees dance “that complex features must bristle to multiple possibilities and evolution wins its required flexibility.”(14)
After reading Katherine and the other artist’s note on the word redundancy in regard to the role of a dramaturg, I began to realize how redundancy influences artistic fields quite differently than fields of science or language. I have always been taught to avoid redundancy and to value conciseness, especially in academic and social context, and by doing that it seems like I have stopped myself from exploring all the existing possibilities. It is wonderful how art is a field where redundancy and messiness is allowed, a field where redundancy is used to create more possibilities, and a field where people are allowed explore a work while being free of the restrictions of playing a specific role. After looking at redundancy in a new perspective, I see the importance in allowing some redundancy to happen in processes of work of arts just for the “creative joy of redundancy”(13).

Works Cited

Cambridge Dictionary "Fragment." Accessed 6 Jan 2018. https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/fragment.