In the last post, I posted about the performance I took to the Going Dutch Festival, but I wanted to talk a little bit about the experience of going to the festival. It was a little odd to be driving to Elgin IL in May - WHERE WAS ALL THE CORN!? (It had not grown yet. Because it was MAY.) I once again stayed with the sweet and awesome family I had stayed with for the 2017 Fringe Festival, and they were gracious enough to let me crash their family memorial day festivities because I was not really wanting to be driving on Memorial Day weekend. (I adore you, Bouwmeesters! :))
I taught a class in dialogic devising/movement creation, and was tickled when a visual artist decided to jump in and play. I have really been enjoying working with people who don't consider themselves to be "DANCERS" as of late. They don't have as many preconceptions about what movement and dance should be, so sometimes they come up with some of the most interesting movement. Participants also included Maddy Rager and Scott Crandall of Thank You So Much for Coming who are delightful human beings, and also create absurd, thought-provoking, and hilarious art. (So yes, right up my alley.)
I participated in outreach classes with two other amazing women and teachers, Christine Hands and Dyana Daniels. It was fun to work with kids again, even though I was a little out of practice., and delightful to observe and talk with two other teachers. We all talked about how we were going to steal things from each other's teacher's bags o' tricks.
I took several classes (having the workshops and classes was one of my favorite parts of the festivals. Sometimes when you get caught up in performing and creating work, you forget to step out of your comfort zone and learn something new every once in a while. ) The "Queering Performance" workshop with Kristi Faulkner created a space that was somehow both challenging and welcoming, an interesting space of questioning and introspection. I took several workshops with Barbara Bickel, a meditation and a napping/dream scroll experience. I was very much drawn to Barbara's dedication to these types of long term, ever-evolving, and community based art projects. Christine presented her work and discussed disability in dance, something that I don't have a great deal of experience with, but have been interested in for a long time. I greatly enjoyed getting to see her work with her sister (who is disabled and uses a wheelchair,) the connection between the two sisters was a joy.
I watched... a lot of performance. Mostly movement and dance, but some theatre and interdisciplinary work as well. I'd probably have to go back through my programs to talk about all of it, but there was so much thoughtful, interesting, and risk-taking work being presented, I'm going to steal a phrase from one of the producers (thanks Erin!) and just say that it was a definite "art boner" experience. I had been feeling a little artistically worn down and (dare I say it?) bored when I went to the festival, and it ended up being exactly what I needed. Women rock, y'all.
Oh yes, I also created a dance film for the festival!
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Hello, I'm Julie and Dance owns my soul
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