Mission of Burma guitarist Roger Miller hosts his first surrealist game night this weekend. At least, his first public one. “I got turned onto surrealism as a formal version of psychedelia,” Miller says. “Psychedelia was kind of sloppy, but surrealism gives it form.”
What kind of surreal games?
“I’ve always done the Exquisite Corpse paintings,” he continues. “We used to call it Divided Humans.” That’s the drawing game where one person draws a head, folds the paper so it isn’t seen, and other players finish it. “My brothers and I would always do things like the legs would be volcanoes. It became much more blatant.”
Miller advises that though the game night is informal, with people coming and going as they want, participants must concentrate when playing. “There is a concentration level you have to apply. If you don’t take them seriously, the fun results don’t show up.”
Artsiness aside, the games can be an important communal experience, too.
“The thing about these games is the collective result is more important than the individual. Someone could be a great writer and put down a great word, but unless it integrates with what everyone else does, it’s just a word. It’s the connected thing. Everybody is on the same field, there’s no competition. There’s no winner; everybody wins.”
Surrealist Game Night hosted by Roger Miller
Saturday, 7 p.m.
Center for Arts at the Armory
191 Highland Ave., Somerville
MBTA: Red Line to Davies square