Pas­tor­al Spir­it, 2008

Per­form­ance at All Hal­lows Church, London
Pho­to­graphy by Michael Smythe and Joseph Ramirez
Com­mis­sioned and pro­duced by Wallspace

Cli­ent: Mem­bers of the public 

Loc­a­tion: All Hal­lows Church, Lon­don, UK 

When will my suc­cess come?
Will my par­ents die unhappy?
How can we raise our chil­dren peace­fully when we’re sur­roun­ded by viol­ence in the world and the media?
What’s more import­ant: a sense of duty or a life of fulfillment?
Is the safe way the bet­ter one? 

A series of rituals in the church were per­formed, accom­pan­ied by a choir rehearsed in anim­al vocal mim­icry. Each ritu­al was under­taken in search of an answer to a single ques­tion pro­posed by a mem­ber of the audi­ence. Fol­low­ing each ritu­al phase, Coates went up into the pul­pit and delivered his response, describ­ing the jour­neys he made and the anim­als he encountered dur­ing the ritu­al. The exper­i­ences of these encoun­ters formed the basis for an inter­pret­a­tion / answer to each ques­tion. The ques­tions and answers were writ­ten up on a flip chart.

Instruc­tions for the choir

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