Neil LaPierre is 6’3″, 185 lbs, an air conditioner salesman and a performance artist. I met LaPierre at The Banff Centre, within a thematic residency program, Experimental Comedy Training Camp. “I’m from Southern Ontario, Canada, but I ran away to art school in the Maritimes. My favorite dinosaur is the Tyrannosaurus rex. I have my own Blog and I draw inspiration from Tony Little, and Suze Orman.”
LaPierre’s Banff series’ ringtone is related to a series of self-help inspired, one-on-one performances he’s doing at Experimental Comedy Training Camp (ECTC). The concept is simple and fun. “If a person makes an appointment with my receptionist, they can expect a free, personalized and weekly-based themed session that lasts approximately 15 minutes.” Themes within the first month of the residency included Take Control of Your Life, Fantasy Week, and Total Transformation. Participants attending the sessions may receive light therapy, invent new dance moves with the artist, have their fingernails painted, or receive a harsh talking-to.
When The N. LaPierre Office Studio is open, the artist comes into work appropriately attired (suit jacket, shirt and tie, nice shoes). Mr. LaPierre is aided by another ECTC resident, artist Briony Clarke. His ringtone, the Office Studio Alert Bell is a sound you’d hear in one of these sessions. “When I’ve run over the allotted time with a client,” LaPierre says, “Ms. Clarke rings a bell to let us know the session has concluded.”
The gentle bell sound makes for a lovely text message alert. Thanks to Neil LaPierre and his assistant, artist Briony Clarke, for sharing their performative sound with Locally Toned.