Sunday, October 15, 2017

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Support Dayspring Homes!

Join us today at Berverly Hills Tavern for the Berks County Parrot Heads Club "Parrot Daze"!

This year, proceeds benefit Dayspring Homes, Inc!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Moments from May

May was full of making memories and moving forward. What made your May memoriable?

Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day is for Remembering

Who did you remember today?

Thank you...
... to those who gave their lives for the protection of our country and our freedoms
... to those who continue to sacrifice - through remembering or trauma or service
... to those families who have stayed on the homefront, supporting and serving from a different front line
... to those who respect and honor our freedoms and rights and live the example of remembering through their daily actions and decisions
... to those who will choose to enter into the armed (and unarmed) services

May your memory be a light in times of darkness.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Spirit's Charmers

I continue to dive deeper into Michael Lancaster's poem "Heading Old".

He wrote on Facebook that this was to be his final poem... but he continues to write.

I'm reminded that sometimes endings are not endings, but opportunities for one element to replace another element.

A transition.

A little death that leads to a new birth.

A cycle within a an endless pattern of cycles.

When we started "One foot..." in the fall, I felt as though I was in transition; within the seasons but also within my life.

Paying mindful attention during this pregnancy has reminded me that I/ we am/are constantly in transition, passing not only from one moment to the next, but shedding and regrowing as part of the journey. I marvel at how much I've shed in order to grow and, in reading and reflecting on Michael's "Heading Old", how much more shedding and growing there is to come.


We continue, also, to work with Paul Fejko's music. Another challenge, because his organ improvisations have always sounded so harsh to me. But his is providing a context for this journey and his sound allows us to identify a place-space within the shedding. It feels unfamiliar and yet honest and comforting. Like a new planet - like a new place to call home.

I'm grateful for the opportunity to take this process in pieces as we journey to an ultimate, possibly evening-length work. Each step in the journey allows me the opportunity to situate myself within the layers of Michael's poetry, even as I unravel and rebuild my own cocoon.

The soup of this work contains:
1. Michael Lancaster's "Heading Old" - specifically the lines:
"And now my cadence slows to bird song,
Soft, spare, vulnerable to all,
Mine to teach me a rarer, slower
Exquisite truth, the Spirit's charmers, who
Soar at such speeds as to defy vision,
Who bring passion and beauty as
They companion my slower life."

2. Some of the images that influence his writing:

3. Ellen Rosenberg's images. In these I see time, geometry of the physical body, life-breath, and echos of soft, spare, passion, beauty, companion, slower:

4. Paul Fejko's haunting sound score.

5. Four technically precise dancers.

Join us at KYL/D's InHale/ ExHale Performane Series this weekend

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter! Happy Passover!

What are you celebrating at this time of the year?

I remember being a child and told that Easter is the most important holiday because Christ conquered death and now, believers (Catholics) could live without fear. My small mind was really confused because, although I was brought up in the Church and celebrated Easter, I still had a lot of fear - fear of bad guys, fear of disappointing my parents and teachers, fear of rejection...

"Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over and through me. And when it has gone past, I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." ~from Frank Hebert's Dune

Easter and Spring time are opportunities for reflection, regrowth, and rebuilding. And facing fears.

I've stayed quiet during this journey of Becoming Mom because I've had a lot of fear:

Fear regarding my career.
Fear regarding the availability of reproductive care with the current political climate.
Fear of social rejection.
Fear of my body and how she's changing.
Fear of how my child will grow and grow up.
Fear of how my child will journey into the joys and challenges of being a member of society.
Fear of losing control of how my body looks.
Fear of how the health of my body will change.
Fear of perception - that by being pregnant, I'm somehow less of who I was and have become a vessel instead of an intelligent, functioning, active member of society and my community.
Fear of physical vulnerability.
Fear of the vulnerability of this little life growing inside of me.
Fear of emotional vulnerability - as I become more aware of the human condition through the development of this little new person.
Fear of emotional vulnerability - as I become more aware of the changes occurring in and around me.
Fear of artistic vulnerability - putting myself and this changing body in the public eye.
Fear of artistic vulnerability - as my artistry changes as my awareness changes.
Fear of how this new life will effect the life I've created - professionally, physcially, artistically, socially...
Fear of how my relationships will be challenged, strengthened, and changed.
Fear of admitting I am afraid of all of these things... and some I'm sure I'm not ready to admit.

In the past week, specifically, I've received more honest questions about this process - how am I feeling, really? What's it like to be pregnant and a professional dancer? Will I continue to perform?

And while some people have asked "what happened to you?", in the way that their sarcastic personalities allow them to connect with the world, most of the questions have been genuine curiousities. Because of the courage of the the young women who have bravely asked me these questions in the past week, I realize that it's time to face my fears, let them pass over and through me, and to remain.

I missed the Lenten tradition of giving something up or sacrificing. 1) because I'm not a practicing Catholic and 2) because I've been wrapped up in my world of finding ways to protect myself from my fears. During this Easter season of rebirth, I'm going to spend some time talking, sharing, and listening to this journey with a spirit of renewal. It's my hope that through sharing this vulnerable (and yet completely normal, natural, super-human) and embodied journey, I'll open doors for conversation, education, strength, and compassion. But first, I need to face the fear.

Happy Easter! I look forward to learning more about your journeys, adventures, and experiences of embodying the story of Becoming Mom (or Becoming Dad. Or Becoming You).  

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

April Showers bring...


We're deep into the Philadelphia performance season! Mark your calendars and get your tickets! Here's a quick rundown on what's reigning (raining...?) on the April calendar - and into the summer. (Click on the links for tickets and more info).

April 8th & 9th. Koresh Artist Showcase at Koresh Dance, Philly. April 8th - 6pm & 8pm. April 9th 6pm. We're sharing a new work inspired by the music of Carrington Kay. 

April 8th. Boundaries and Bridges presents Theatrical Bridges. An evening of film and theater inspired by building bridges in Chester, PA. 7pm at Widener University's Alumni Auditorium.

April 13th. KYL/D's Deconstructing ONE - Immortal Game at KYL/D's CHI MAC at 7:30pm. Get a behind-the-scenes look at Kun-Yang Lin's process of creating and reconstructing ONE - Immortal Game.

April 21st & 22nd. Nora Gibson Contemporary Ballet's NothingThatIsNotThere presented in conjunction with the Philadelphia Science Festival at the Performance Garage. (I'm not performing because I'm deep in the process of Becoming Mom, but I've been a part of Nora's work since 2009. More on Becoming Mom as a contemporary ballet dancer in another post...)

April 23rd. Widener University's Spring Chamber Music and Dance Concert. 3pm at Widener University's Kapelski LC1.

April 27-29th. Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers at Prince Theater. Use my artist code: Jessica8 for a special friends and family discount on your tickets! Read author/scholar/artist/incredible person Kimerer LaMothe's article from Deconstructing Santuario in Psychology Today and check out this interview preview I did with my super cool friend and colleague Nikolai McKenzie:

May 12th & 13th. KYL/D's InHale/ ExHale Performance Series at KYL/D's CHI MAC, 7:30pm both nights. More info coming soon! Different artists will be presented each evening, including work by KYL/D's own talented group of creators!

June 9th. The Embodiment Project travels to NYC for the The Moving Beauty Series. 8pm at the Hudson Guild Theatre.

June 28th. The Embodiment Project's back in NYC at Dixon Place for 8 in Show.

Whew! I look forward to seeing you during these adventures! Check back for updates on the performances and process.