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Stonington Opera House

Duet-ing again

I thought I was done. Performing. Apparently, I am not. I have at least been taken in by my own pitch: These are very very short dances!  I am – at best – enjoying moving with my friends.

As part of the Harbor Residency, Tina and I had the opportunity to share our work-to-date with a small group of students and their teacher from the Blue Hill Harbor School, a project-based high school.  In May, the school stops holding regular classes and instead the students participate in field trips, workshops and projects of their design. We gathered such thoughtful and useful responses from them that will help us as we go forward to fine-tune.

This dance came together like a puzzle, of sorts: together, with each other, and with the music. A visual and aural piecing together . . . a wild ride!

Tina remembered this as we were working to ‘fill the gaps’

“Thomas Merton wrote, ‘there is always a temptation to diddle around in the contemplative life, making its-bitsy statues.’ There is always an enormous temptation in all of life to diddle around making its-bitsy friends and meals and journeys for itsy-bitsy years on end. It is so self-conscious, so apparently moral, simply to step aside from the gaps where the creeks and winds pour down, saying, I never merited this grace, quite rightly, and then to sulk along the rest of your days on the edge of rage.

I won’t have it. The world is wilder than that in all directions, more dangerous and bitter, more extravagant and bright. We are making hay when we should be making whoopee; we are raising tomatoes when we should be raising Cain, and Lazarus.

Go up into the gaps. If you can find them; they shift and vanish too. Stalk the gaps. Squeak into a gap in the soil, turn, and unlock-more than a maple- a universe. This is how you spend this afternoon, and tomorrow morning, and tomorrow afternoon. You can’t take it with you.”

-Annie Dillard Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

 

Harbor Residency

Thanks to Opera House Arts in Stonington, ME, and the ongoing and gracious support of artistic director, Meg Taintor, residency coordinator, Kate Russell, and the OHA staff, and a TCU Research and Creative Activities grant, Tina and I start work together this week.

Here’s the harbor!

And a view from the OHA theater’s lobby where Tina was warming up, taking in the view.

And …getting started.

 

 

authentic movement as a start

Mercy is a long-time practitioner of Authentic Movement. She was anxious to share the experience with me and suggested we use the practice as a point of departure. While I have only just connected to the tip of the proverbial iceberg in terms of the impact of Authentic Movement to generate clarity of being, and transformation, we did land on an idea to set in motion: it involves a mover and a witness; an experience of giving and taking of weight and support.

 

Mercy

following curiosity

Loretta bird's eye view

Curious about scale and the role of perspective in that …

Curious about filmed imagery as time…in time…

Curious – always – about simultaneous realities…

I would like to add my thanks to the UCI Department of Dance, Claire Trevor School of the Arts, University of California, Irvine, for in-kind support of the creative work that Loretta and I pursued together.

in light of time

The development of a dance – for me – is always about the gathering and then culling of ideas. Mostly those on being and becoming. All ideas live afloat in my surrounds and as I get closer to studio work, I start to sift through them. Questions guide the sifting process as well as the dance-making process; the ideas that remain help to establish context and content.

Prior to getting together, conversations with Loretta turned toward scale. This happened in part because Loretta finds fascinating the photographs of Robert Hite, and his play with scale.  This work by Hite became part of the conversation about the nature of  looking back in time – realizing that when one is small, all things material register differently in size than they do later in life. What once seemed to scale – if not large – now feels somewhat miniature.

Thus our point of departure: miniatures for the mind and the imagination – translated through the body in motion…

Loretta hand