Be Ill-Disciplined | Performance Lecture by Kai Syng Tan

Be-Ill Disciplined is a new performance lecture by Kai Syng Tan exploring how creativity and neurodiversity can drive social change.

We need new compasses, fresh tools, and untried directions.  

With the pandemic, Black Lives Matter, and the ongoing crises in climate, health, and technological control, we’ve all been thinking a lot about leadership.

  • What makes a  ‘good’  leader?
  • What could a new kind of leader look like
  • As artists, curators, creative producers and theatre-makers, how can we make art, make shows   and make  change?  

Kai Syng Tan  is an artist, curator and academic. She argues that artists – especially artists with ‘non-standard’ and neurodiverse ways of thinking – can help invent new solutions to the major challenges facing our societies, and work to co-create a fairer world.  

‘Normal’ hasn’t worked, so we need leaders with  atypical  ways of being, thinking, making, and organising for our ‘new normal’.  Be Ill-disciplined  invites you to critically and creatively explore leadership – and to think about yourself as a leader.  The lecture will include a chance for discussion and questions. 

The event was facilitated by artist, writer and curator Ashokkumar Mistry.

Length: 59:27
Private publishing date: 19th September 2020
Publishing date: 14th November 2020

Commissioned by performingborders & Contact for performingbordersLIVE20, with support from HowlRound Theatre Commons, Live Art Development Agency and Foreign Actions Productions. Additional funding from Arts Council England.

Dr Kai Syng Tan FRSA SFHEA is an artist, curator, consultant and academic. Marked by an ‘eclectic style and cheeky attitude’ (Sydney Morning Herald), ‘radical interdisciplinarity’ (Dr Alan Latham, UCL) and ‘positive atmosphere’ (Guardian), Kai’s work has been widely shared. She is Senior Lecturer at Manchester School of Art and Visiting Artist at King’s College London. Networks she has founded include: RUN! RUN! RUN!, Neurodiversity In/And Creative Research, Running Cultures Research Group and Co-Founder and Member of Arts and Mobilities Network. She is also UK Adult ADHD Network Creative and Cultural Consultant, PsychART Advisor and Music In Detention trustee. Website.

Ashokkumar Mistry is a multidisciplinary artist, writer and curator working in the UK and internationally. His writing encompasses direct research and personal experiences relating to neurodiversity with a view to sharing experiences and changing attitudes. He is currently Associate Artist with Disability Arts Online and a Development Artist with The Spark Arts. Ashokkumar has been commissioned by the BBC and a number of galleries such as the Lowry and Southbank Centre to create artworks and exhibitions. As a curator, he has worked with AIS for a number of years developing innovative and thought-provoking exhibitions. Ashokkumar has also developed a number of exhibitions in Taiwan for National Cheng Kung University and A-Glow space. Website.

Contact. We are the leading national theatre and arts venue to place young people at the decision-making heart of everything. At Contact, young people aged 13-30 genuinely lead, working alongside staff in deciding the artistic programme, making staff appointments and act as full Board members.The result is an outstanding, diverse and accessible artistic programme for everyone. Website.

HowlRound TV is a global, commons-based peer produced, open access livestreaming and video archive project stewarded by the nonprofit HowlRound. HowlRound TV is a free and shared resource for live conversations and performances relevant to the world’s performing arts and cultural fields. Its mission is to break geographic isolation, promote resource sharing, and to develop our knowledge commons collectively. Participate in a community of peer organizations revolutionizing the flow of information, knowledge, and access in our field by becoming a producer and co-producing with us.

Image Credit: Catalysing Change through Artful Agitation: Atypical Adventures with A Hyperactive Octopussy. Mixed media, Kai Syng Tan 2020