1 December 2011, 7pm
Diplareios School, 3 Plateia Theatrou, Athens
A staged reading of Paul Chan’s artist book Phaedrus Pron. Part of Word of Mouth, curated by KERNEL.
Image: Phaedrus Pron staging sketch by Paul Chan, 2011
Actors: Antonis Vathis (Socrates), Yorgos Tsamis (Phaedrus)
Installation by Andreas Angelidakis
Text written by Paul Chan on the occasion of Phaedrus Pron performance in Word of Mouth:
It is interesting that the philosopher who is considered the greatest and perhaps the first is also the one who never wrote a thing down and considered philosophy as nothing other than hanging out and talking. This is what we must remember: Socrates lived and Plato wrote. And it is not clear at all how Socrates would have felt about how his former student Plato used him as inspiration, puppet, pet, substitute, teacher, student, and foil.
But not lover. How speech turns into acts is not unlike how two people come to become one. Socrates knew. But did Plato?
I wrote Phaedrus Pron with this in mind. Tonight, as you listen and watch what is happening unfold, and as you get bored and look around, trying to find someone to seduce and sleep with tonight, what will you say to them so that he or she will relent, or become interested enough to care? These are the words that matter. But in many ways, it isn’t the words at all that do the trick. It is the rhythm. Rhythm makes meaning mean.
Your world is crumbling. Where will you find what matters, and how will you turn them into forms?