THE ACT Emails

- Sent: Wednesday, March 20, 2002 11:49 PM
- Subject: lima
Dear Nina and Karen,
Thank you. For giving me the opportunity to make this work, your help and support have be really amazing. I hope the web cast went well, from here it sounded like it was such a success that the servers couldn't cope. I hope also that you managed to play the back up file from Chile, sorry I gave you only 11 minutes to get it. Our calculations yesterday were wrong because Chile is only four hours behind not six, making the backup was crazy and getting it uploaded unbelievable, and we ran through annther airport. So we sat down on the plane to Lima as my first slot was due to go live and stood in the immigration at Lima as the second was to go live. We did try to use the business class phone on the plane to have a 1 frame /second link live from the plane but they weren't having it.

At customs we filled in the cards with no admission that we were bringing in a portable TV studio in our rucksacks, when we reached the red and green channel a customs official took our delcaration cards and asked us to press the lottery button on the post next to him, when I pressed it the arrow lit green and we walked through.

We met someone called Miriam who says that she can get us to Corihuayranchina, once we have found out which is the right one, their are two places with the same name and the newspaper here seems to have it wrong, we think the BBC got it right. Act 2 is a conversation with Miriam. We travel to Cuzco at 8am and are being met by Nico Montesinos who will take us to the institute who work with Peter Frost who 'found' Corihuayranchina. We have been told that it is very high through mountain jungle (7-8days walk??) . We will stay in Cuzco for at least a day to acclimatise and upload more to my part of the site. And was this story the right decision, when I told Miriam about the project she said 'God knows why you are here'.
Speak to you soon
Chris x

- Sent: Friday, March 22, 2002 5:37 PM
- Subject: Re: hello from Cusco

Hi Karen and Nina
Thank you for sorting out all the links, we are trying to get some more video up onto the site but this won{t be til later tonight, internet access in in Cusco is difficult.
We are meeting a TV crew from Peru in about 1/2 an hour at the National Institute of Culture to try and get permision to go to the new site, Helicopters are in short supply but we have a contact who is going to take us to speak with the army and the Police, ; we could possibly hire a small plane and fly round the site or we may leave tomorrow for a nine day walk to get there. Its at 11000 feet. Currently we are at around 10000 feet and in slow motion.
A few minutes ago we came from the NIC walking through the Plaza of Love and met a mass of TV and media, filming Police and men dressed in white medical coats, they had found the lower arm and hand of a woman that had been found by the gardener this morning. When we arrived in Lima two days ago a bomb went off outside the US Embassy, killing ten Peruvians... Bush arrives in Lima tommorrow. And we continue to head towards the top of this mountain to find this newly famous place Corihuaychina.
We have been told that CNN are here in Cusco, and someone is trying to find them for us, we could really do with some help here, if Karen? could possibly draft a letter to CNN and email it to any address you can find, possibly make a call or two to CNN in London, any clue as to their location here would be a massive help.
Speak to you all soon c

Sent: Wednesday 27 March 2002 6:23PM
From: Nina
Subject: We can see you
but no sound

Sent: Thursday, March 28, 2002 8:51 PM (via satellite phone from Maizal Mt Victoria)

we have heavy rain and can not return the way we came the rivers are
flooded and no bridges we have emailed Nico in Cusco who has arranged this trip and emailed asking for him to collect us in a different place.
BUT he may not check his email.
Please phone him on ****************
the first number is best please keep trying.
and ask him to send a private car ( just car means bus) to A Huancacalle - Punta Carretera on 30-03-02 at 12 pm
tell him to check his email.
yesterday we are amazed that we managed to stream anything the computer crashed at 6pm and the rain came. so delighted that you got the live stream with sound (when I turned it on), the rain stopped for an hour and we made it to the very top amazing video.
this is an intense trip. our alternative route out takes us to about 15000 feet but is not supposed to
be as steep and dangerous. we continiue to take great care and our guides are brilliant. Thank you for your help and for the live web cast we ran for about twenty minutes but I pulled the isdn cable out with my foot so who knows how much you got. x chris
Subject: press release
> Sent: 05/04/20 4:21 am
> Received: 10/04/02 10:12 am
Hi Karen We have just begun to emerge from a lost weekend of sickness and exhaustion. Still not eating or actually standing up very much, but we've been to the doctor and have convinced ourselves that we getting better. I have been trying to compress more video and update the site but as yet only managed to stare at the what now seems like surreal footage in wonder.
I will try and get something together today for you. but for now...I have been looking again at the story on the BBC page, the ariel image of the site is not of Corehuayrachina its of another site Choqueequirao 1 1/2 days walk away on a different mountain that has been excavated. The real video shows an opening shot flying low over Choquequirao with the opening line , "this is the place local Indians call Corehuaryrachina..." (no it isn't). The only photo that they have used of Corehuayrachina is the one at the top of the page that was supplied by Peter Frosts expedition.
The articles I have read in the Telegraph and the BBC say the site is around 11000 feet and part of it is but the main image (the one with the skull and the team excavating at the top) is from the top platform at over 12000 feet. ( My web cast was from the platform below this, still at over 12000, after the web cast we climbed to the top platform and I will be putting video from there onto the site.). The telgraph article read "Two years of planning went into overcoming the logistical challenges to reach the site, which is four days on foot from the nearest road. The expedition had to cross the 10000ft-deep Apurimac Canyon and a series of rugged Andean ranges...."
All this makes me think that this soon to be famous place, now made famous by the media is still awaiting a visit from a news journalist. I suspect the video footage was supplied by the National Institute of Culture, as it begins to load it shows the name of Percy Paz Flores in the top bar, Carlos and Raphiel from Cusco TV found and introduced us to Percy, he drew us the map and wrote out the itinerary for us. I don't know what this means if anything. Will come back to you later with some thoughts for the press release.

- Subject: Re: TVSS press release answers?
- Sent: 14/04/20 2:51 am
- Received: 10/04/02 10:12 am
- From: Chris Helson
- To: Karen J Guthrie
- CC: Georgia Ward Nina Pope
Key points:

1. Soon to be famous place.. Lost Inca city discovered. Corehuayrachina. Top Story on BBC World 19-03-02

2. BBC World show video and images of the supposed Lost City, but they show a different place. The story had run across the worlds media but no news media had been there? Reality / Unreality...

3. Live video webcast from Corehuayrachina at the top of Mount Victoria in the Vilcabamba region of Peru at over 12000ft.

In trying to answer your questions, its early days and would welcome questions, but here goes... The Act, an absurd chase half way round the world to a now 'famous place' embuded by the worlds media as having 'significance' and 'meaning'. I was struck as I travelled that I had focused much of my research on the war against terrorism, ( where the concept of terrorism remains a widely accepted yet undefined notion), 24 hours before the web cast I was fully expecting to travel to Jerusalem, where Arafat was due to meet the US Vice president? and the place that has remained as the number one world media story since I left, 24 hours later I arrive in Lima where a 'terrorist' bomb explodes killling 10 people, and Bush arrives in Lima two days later, I leave and continue my trip to the top of the mountain. I am thinking about the act, the theatre of this act in the context of the mass disemination by the media of images of violence around the world. In the news context this act is in itself imbued with meaning, iconography, in one sense its romantic, a journey to the last refuge of a once powerful civilization, high on a mountain top a site used to worship the gods. A tragic place, where the last Inca king fell and the gold robbed.

I have also been thinking about the Indiana Jones factor, where news and entertainment meet, where for the expedition 'two years of planning went into overcoming the logistical challenges of reaching the site' extreme altitude, walking along narrow crumbling cliff paths one step away from falling thousands of feet into the canyon, to a site with robbed gold, mountain top sacrificial platforms, underground tombs, ( as we climbed down a cliff from the top I put my hand into a hole in a wall and peered into an underground room, the National Geographic Channel program about Corehuayrachina to be shown on May 19th is called Inca Mummies: Secrets of a lost Empire, and they have only just begun to excavate), and yes thats how it was and for the act, the live web cast showed us having our lunch eating sweet corn with the Peruvians who had come with us mother baby and all, my expectation before I went and as I was travelling were thoughts about the reality -unreality of news. And we travel there, racing to leave the country so fast we forget to write down the name of the place, follow the same route, get stranded by the flooded river and escape out over the mountains, all in two weeks. And no I don't want it pitched this way, but the symbolism is there, thats what people who have seen the site come to us with. Our Inca guides tell us all about the site, although they tell us that have never been before, they show sadness and tell us about the bad people who came and robbed the graves. The BBC refer to the experts about the significance of the finds and speculate on what might be there, 'Peru's New Machu Picchu' the headline, possibly bigger older and more spectacular.

Oh I feel like I haver only just begun, need to think about:

1. the new technology meets ancient advanced civilisation.

2. Peter Frosts act of revealing this place to the world, his relucance to speak to us, the resposibility the media has of revealing places, the poronography.

3. Simulation, use of other admission.

4. The generic kit, the DIY.

5. Remote action

5. The telling of the story live. The intimacy of the medium.

6. The expectation of being in one place following the story against the reality of this project of continuous travel, concerned about being on the

surface unable to get deeper into the place.

7. news post september 11th

As you can see I have not got my thoughts clear at the moment. Reading back over this the section from 'I am thinking about the act' to 'gold robbed' is the most interesting to me. I will try and write more soon.Got to go sleep. Let me know what you think you are welcome to send more questions.

speak soon
Chris x