Angie and I had our first rehearsal for Trenches today. I initially wanted to re-work a section that received a lot of feedback and many people told me they wanted to see more. The section was a short part where Angie and I twisted around and through each other. To me, this part seemed like it needed more investigation.
In a few moments, we re-embodied the vocabulary of the piece and then got to work. The information I gave Angie was that I thought this version of the piece seemed to be more about getting our hands dirty within a process. The digging and the messiness of a lived experience. We began improvising with that notion and weight sharing.
The process took a different turn.
After several sessions of improvising, we sat and talked about the experiences. Angie said that she felt like she was trying to manipulate and control me and sometimes I responded and sometimes the roles reversed. She got very confused when the roles reversed and did not know how to respond.
Art imitates life.
I found it fascinating. We began to talk about the messiness of this past year. We've had several e-mail discussions with our peer group from our MFA, which has now dispersed, globally. In these conversations, we discussed priorities, needs to dance and create work, the complications of being an artist in the current economy, we talked about feeling alone and needing to find our own way without the collaborate spirit we had experienced during our time under the educational umbrella. During these conversations, I realized how important my peer group was to me.
A year later, we're all standing firmly on our feet. We've negotiated the first, second, and third bends in our rivers and we're still trudging forward. Our rivers have long since diverged paths.
Angie's observation was keenly interesting given our situations in life. At this point in time - on this day, I have many, many options. I trust that the universe will provide me with the tools to make the right decision, but that decision is not to be made right now.
Angie's path is clear and set for the next year. She seems very happy and content. We're both in a place where we are confident and happy, yet these places are very different.
Strange that during our improvisations, our bodies reflected our states. Not strange. Very clear and almost predictable.
Of course Angie would want to control me and push me into a specific path. Of course she would be confused when I resisted. This is where her body, her energy is in life.
After two hours of improvisations, we found a common energetic quality. Our movement was not less aggressive, but we complimented each other. Angie still felt like she was controlling me, but my response was less of resistance and more of acceptance. Again, seeming strange, but obvious and exciting.
We did not set anything during this rehearsal, but made the decision to get back into this process and see what the piece was dictating. We reflected on where we were in September, and where we are now, almost a year later.
I feel that this is the second installation of a much longer process. We're meeting again next week and I'm excited to see what's in store!