Saturday, May 30, 2015

Day 95: Dress rehearsal

#95 Dress rehearsal

Still not sure what I'm dress rehearsing for. Decided to think of it as a dress rehearsal for presenting some kind of summary of this whole project. I went through all of the writing and pulled small bits from every prompt into one document, with the idea that this is something I could read aloud. Read some of it aloud.

I think I just turned this into an exercise in editing.

Ideally, there would also be a very edited video with something from every video and drawing that would play, perfectly timed, with the reading.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Day 94: Schedule a dress rehearsal

#94 Schedule a dress rehearsal. Invite 0-50 people to witness.


I mean, ok. But dress rehearsal for what? Of what?

This makes me so uncomfortable.

Okherewego. Dress rehearsal is hereby scheduled for Sunday morning at 11am in my apartment. Zero people are invited. Unless y'all want to come over?

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Day 93: Re-arrange parts randomly

#93 Re-arrange parts randomly. Improvise "set" or saved material to breathe new life into it.

So, I don't really have set or saved material. And my enthusiasm for phrase-making remains as limp as ever. But then this happened: I read this prompt a couple of days a go and didn't get around to doing it until today. And when I did, I mis-remembered it. Somehow the word "improvise" - my favorite word when it comes to prompts - got lost. I thought I was making another phrase. I reconciled myself to it. I thought about Susan Rethorst's "wrecking" process, where you invite another choreographer to come in and wreck your material. Maybe I could wreck my own. Even though I don't remember any of it.

I dug back through the handful of phrases that I've created, and pulled a few little bits here and there and, voila! New phrase! More or less.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Day 92: the dance not done

#92 Review all of your documentation. Move the "dance not done"

It got fun again. I'm not sure why. Just the change of scenery? After months of dancing in my bedroom, I danced in my bathroom instead. And something about the space and the rather dramatic music made it more fun. I felt less like I was dancing around slack-jawed and aimless, more like there was a story hidden somewhere under the surface.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Day 91: What if?

#91 What if?

The one person (me) version, asked and answered

What if everyone I love and respect leaves the city?
For a long time I've thought that I would live in this city for the rest of my life. Now I wonder what that will look like. As of now, I'm privileged to have a high paying part time job that allows me to live in a studio apartment in San Francisco and spend the rest of my time doing art related stuff. (And ok, also napping and seeing friends and watching Netflix, etc.) This is lucky. Very lucky. But, when the city is drained of artists and wonderful weirdos who are less lucky, or who have just made different choices about how to balance work and life and art, what do I do? Or better question: how do I help stop that from happening so I don't have to answer this question.

What if art and movement practice lived in public spaces?
Sometimes it does. And it's like, yes, this belongs here. This is what actually creates the place.
Sometimes it doesn't. This question came up for me again a couple of days ago when I danced for ten minutes in a parking lot, and felt a strong sensation that I didn't belong. That possibly I was doing something wrong. But I'm thinking that it lives in public spaces if we make it and do it in public spaces and just stake our claim. Not, this is mine, but this is ours. We belong here.

What if I always approached dance-making as a practice rather than a product?
I think I might be happier. But perhaps would feel even less validated by society than I currently do. Would dance-making be a hobby at that point? How different is that? Is it a problem?

What if I stopped producing shows?
Ugh. See above.

What if I die next week?
Well, then for me, nothing. But maybe I would be doing things differently right now. But not SO differently. Yesterday I took dance class and saw an improv show and celebrated a friend's birthday. That's not such a bad day in my final week of life. I probably wouldn't go to work next week, though. I'd go out dancing. I'd go outside. I'd spend as much time as possible with friends and family and my love. I might meditate. I'm not sure about that.

What if everything is slowly falling apart?
What if it is? Now that I think about answering this, I don't think it's such an interesting question.

What if things can really change for the better?
Then we're responsible for working to make that happen.

What if we didn't have bodies?
I once went on a date with someone who thought that in our lifetime, we'd evolve, through use of technology, into pure consciousness. Or something like that. I found this idea a little bit interesting and not at all appealing. I am so attached to having a body. We're animals. I don't think I want to be a consciousness without my body. Half the time, it's using my body that rescues me from my own mind.

The crowd-sourced version, unanswered:

What if more people took chances in life and made changes for the better of love, compassion, and the universe of all living creatures?...

Sleep could be stored like money in a bank?

What if I could see my own eyes?

What if I was holding 4,000 helium balloons?

What if We all had the ability to fly at will.

What if these walls could actually talk?

What if humans loss the ability to take a life.

What if We can change the suicide nightmare the planet is dreaming by mistake?

What if money didn't exist!

What if there was no friction?

What if I gave up? Right now?

What if you could get a life transplant?

What if I could fly!?

What if your feet were made out of cherry-lime jello???

What if you had permission to do exactly what you wanted? Right now?

What if we had wings.

What if we all actually just said what we meant?

What if the Bay Area wasn't so insanely expensive?

I want answers!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Day 90: Translate

#90 Translate one prompt into another medium

Translation of Day 82

There's this girl
This woman
There's this woman, and she's in her bedroom

Here's her unmade bed
awkward clusters of pictures on the wall
guitar sulking in the corner

She's dancing
bare feet dancing
Not dancing-in-your-bedroom dancing

She's toes splayed
an arm drifting out to the side
just floating out there forgotten
She's looking at someones who aren't there
looking at her own toes
She's interested in her own toes
testing a transfer of weight
What are they doing down there?

This is dancing:
a deep knee bend
an exploratory swivel of the hips
pretending to be a bird

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Day 89: Repeat a prompt of your choice

#89 Repeat a prompt of your choice

Thinking back, two of the most pleasurable prompts were "paint" and "improvise from sense of sound". If it weren't so close to the end of days, I might have stayed inside and reprised the paint prompt. But I am approaching the end, and movement seems called for. I went up to the roof, with a sort of sense of pleasing symmetry in mind - I did one of the earliest prompts on my roof. The sound of the wind up there was inviting, but it was dark and cold, and a little late to be stomping over my neighbors' heads. So I grabbed my tiny tripod and headed out, thinking maybe Dolores Park? I didn't get that far. A nearby parking lot called to me with the siren song of artificial light and graffiti.

Here's what came up as I stood out in a half-empty (or half-full for you optimists out there) parking lot around 10pm and began to dance...

There was the sound of the wind, of cars passing, the metal fence clanging here and there. This is great stuff for dancing to.

Then, pretty soon, a homeless man across the lot yelling out, possibly at me, but I'm not sure. It puts me a little on edge.

My eyes take over. Sorry, ears. There is too much to see here. It seems like you can see and hear at the same time. I mean, that's how we operate in the world. It seems like you can do both. But can you pay attention to both? I was irresistibly drawn to my visual sense as input for my improvisation, for a time. When I consciously tuned back into sounds, they rushed back in, as though I had just pulled out earplugs. The primacy of vision, y'all.

And the awkwardness of doing something out of the ordinary in public spaces. I have not overcome this feeling of tightness underneath all of the fun stuff when I'm doing some non-sanctioned art-type activity in a public space. I shouldn't be here. Someone is going to tell me I can't be here. Or mock me. Or attack me. Or honestly, sometimes, it's not even wanting to be watched or seen. Which doesn't make any sense. I love to perform. But this isn't performance. It's just exploring. Experimenting. Playing. And I can feel myself holding back. Everything is too contained and it's not just my not-warm-enough-a-little-too-old-to-be-dancing-at-this-hour body. It's something else stopping me from rolling all over that slanted wall. I mean, LOOK AT THAT WALL! I could have been mooshing my body all over it. Why wasn't I rolling around like release-trained modern dancer I was trained to be?Ok, the dirt might also be a factor.

But you guys, I think deep down, it's shame. It's me and my so-called art don't belong here. So I make everything smaller, make myself smaller. Small enough to fit in a studio apartment, even when there's a whole damn world out there.

Surely everything will change tomorrow in the wake of this epiphany.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Day 87: generate material

#87: Use your recording from 86 to generate material

Ok. It's been very hard to get to these in the midst of rehearsing and performing and taking classes and planning a show and working. Is there something meaningful to glean from this difficulty? The best I've been able to do of late is to show up where I'm supposed to be and try to drop into the task at hand. And now I am here, and now I am doing this.

But when I don't really have to be somewhere specific doing a specific thing, well, the dropping in is more of a glancing off. Case in point, another prompt sort of tossed off:

There are just a handful of these left. Maybe I'll dig back in with all my teeth and claws and drag something up from the depths. But for now I'm going to nap.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Day 88: architecture

#88 Observe architecture either live or online and discern it's structure. Design your own building.

Another one to file under "not my job".  Also, I'm out of order! I accidentally skipped 87. Back to that next.