I want to see the psychedelic lights tonight

I saw the Joshua Light Show in action at the Fillmore East in 1968 and it was something of a mindblower, even without the foreknowledge that nearly 36 years later, I would find myself collaborating with Joshua himself and Gary Panter, at the Anthology Film Archives.  Ten years ago today, in a role reversal from the Fillmore days, we set up behind the screen, and improvised to the images.  It was a tight squeeze, but the greatest challenge was convincing Josh that we could react to the moods he and Gary were creating, and that there would be no need for the pre-recorded music that he wanted us to play along with.  With Gary’s help, he agreed to let us perform unaccompanied, except for one of the five (I think it was five) segments.  There were two shows scheduled, but when demand outstripped capacity, we were asked to do a third show.  Deploying our toughest negotiation posture, we said yes, on the condition that there’d be no music but ours at the late show.


gary panter lightshow performance_0