I love this quote.
The 12th(!) InHale Performance Series opens tomorrow, Friday, July 22nd at the Chi Movement Arts Center. I've been curating and running the series since it's inception in September 2008. Our first performance was in January 2009 (yes, it did take that long to plan, organize, and produce one full evening of wonderful work).
My role included curating the performance, stage managing, lighting, marketing, follow up, and documentation. I had a lot of guidance from Ken, Executive Director of KYLD and Kun-Yang, Artistic Director of KYLD, but the three of us ran the series with one (two if we were really, really lucky) volunteer(s) on the day of the performance. We began with folding chairs and pillows, a CD player with loud speakers, a white curtain covering the mirrors, and over head lights that dimmed to provide effect. Through the work of Ken and Kun-Yang, we have a lighting system with gels and dimmers and risers to better see the performances. I now have a technical crew of seven wonderful volunteers! The performance is very intimate and informal, but has grown to become an important part of the Philadelphia community. We receive submissions from Philly, choreographers throughout New York State and New York City, Connecticut, Washington DC, and Michigan. There has been standing room only at most of our performances. We're still learning and growing, but it's taken 12 performances to get where we are right now. It takes time...
I love InHale. I get to see and experience many, many different voices, viewpoints, and genres. Today, in tech, I had the opportunity to sit back and, for the first time, not be the director. My stage manager, Becca, took care of that. Each of my volunteers stepped up to their role. I was touched at how important the work of the artists became to my young friends. The work has always been so important to me, as it was lovely to see that dedication in Becca, Ashley, Jessica, and Tom. Thank you!
I sat and reflected on the work I as it unfolded before me in tech. I do not always conceptually understand a work. That's okay. I do see and respect and understand dedication to craft.
The craft of the choreography - an artist must dedicate him or herself to developing this. It does not come easily or quickly.
The craft of technique - it takes concentrated time and effort to build an extensive relationship with one's body and his/her movement potential. It does not come easily or quickly.
The craft of commitment. This, too, I believe is a craft. Commitment takes practice. It requires failure. It demands a dusting off of one's self and getting back up. The commitment could be to a concept, a motif, to the practice of committing, itself.
Today, I am so proud of the work that the InHale artists are bringing to the audience tomorrow. I'm so proud of my young technicians and interns. I'm proud of the work that we're creating as a community. I'm deeply grateful to Ken and Kun-Yang for letting me have the time to produce InHale, for letting me fall on my face and for waiting as I got back up. I'm grateful for the patience of all of the past InHale participants and volunteers and am so excited for tomorrow's performance and for those to come.
Graham also wrote, "It takes ten years to make a dancer."
(There are still some seats available! E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 267-687-3739 to reserve your tickets. Here's a peek of what's in store: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dUTef0PSKCg )