I had great conversations, got some excellent commissions, sold way too many rings, and one of next year's guests of honor is my writing partner wild_irises. So all together it was fabulous.
But the reason I writing today, is because of my daughter Cid's project. She's been a post modern dance choreographer for over 20 years and does amazing work. She spent the last school year on a Fullbright scholarship teaching choreography and making dances at the University of Tallinn in Estonia. (I was supposed to visit her but the volcano explosions last year got quite literally in the way.)
Last year I was a Fulbright Scholar in Estonia, teaching at Tallinn University and working with an amazing group of professional dancers. Central to my Fulbright project was thinking about how dance intersects with dialectics of nation and identity, and how that plays out on the body and through choreography. I found Estonia to be a particularly vital place to engage in these embodied conversations.
...Over the year I was in Tallinn, I fell in love with Estonia in all its complexity. My time there was challenging, thought provoking, sometimes difficult and ultimately ridiculously rewarding. One of the highlights was working with an extraordinary group of dancers – three Estonians and two Americans: Tiina Mölder, Rain Saukas, Helen Reitsnik, Alexis Steeves and David King. Together we experimented with performance and embodiment, thinking about how to create environments in which the dancers could be wholly themselves, while simultaneously working with the choreography that we had created together.
She made a work, "What We Do in Winter", for her Estonian dancers that has been accepted for the 2012 San Francisco International Arts Festival, with additional engagements, in Los Angeles, San Diego and Santa Cruz. She's been raising the money to bring the her dancers to the United States. She's doing it through the United States Artist Project and she's getting close to her goal of $6000. There is information and a really charming video on the site with the Estonian dancers talking about why they want to come to California. (They come from a cold, cold place.) And of course, it has a video of the dance "What We Do in Winter.
She's leavng for Estonia Sunday, sponsored by the US Embassy, to teach dance workshops and work with her dancers this summer. By the time she leaves, she's hoping to be able to tell the dancers that she's raised all of the money to bring them here .
If it feels right, please support her work. But, in any case, check out the "why we want to go to California" video just for fun.
Mood:Elated and tired