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It’s Opening Night here in Seattle. The 6th Annual Land of the Sweets Production. I’m currently in the Triple Door awaiting our tech run. Am I nervous? I can’t really say honestly. The rehearsal process for this show began back in October. My performing character “Hazel Cupari” emerges tonight as a Tap dancer and Arabian body guard. Oh, how I must mention the finale-but thats a suprise for audience members. The stage is being set, costumes are being unpacked, and dancers sit before mirrors in the dressing rooms preparing for the camera. I guess this will really hit me in a couple hours. I can feel it.
*Deep breathing, inhale/exhale #letsdothis
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This past weekend I had the opportunity to interact with a vast amount of Artists during the 2011 Artspace Hiawatha Lofts Open House. The event allowed people into the homes and workspace of Artists from different disciplines.
I enjoyed the setup of the building itself which gave residents ample space within their lofts to create work. Many had between 13 to 14 ft ceilings. The uniqueness came from seeing how each artist took an approach to their given space. Each room had its own style. No replication anywhere to be found. Being around so much Art I was so inspired to no end. It also lead me to socialize easily as I found interest in the Artist work. Asking perhaps their inspiration opens many levels of conversation with different works. As I met with different artists I could not help but to wonder how I could fit into their discipline. This “fit” was more of what type of collaboration could come about once the minds are joined upon a particular project. I was really in awe that night. I had just finished a rehearsal there myself and began working on a dance phrase that I was to teach the following day in Jazz class. Artists need space!! I commend this organization for taking that element so seriously. I could just imagine how each artist is fond to be in a place of zen of their own but also surrounded by other artists who share the common interest.
When it comes to building a dance company I have to think about these things. I’m more inspired around other artists and it was not until recently that I have discovered that. They share ideas and works in which lead to even more creativity because different things are being expressed. I long for the collaboration of Artists in my company. It excites me to know that its not impossible. I’ve had to take my time upon the development phase of Jeffrey & The Artists because I have to set something never seen or done before. People ask how can you start a company in Detroit and be in Seattle? Honestly, I ask myself that at times as well but thats the challenge isn’t it? I want to develop a voice through a company-not be the star of one. As a friend came to visit town the other weekend we had dinner and discussed my vision for the dance company. I was amazed to have verbally admitted my input on the company. Sometimes it takes us having to talk about something for us to act on it. Drafting the ideas alone can be very overwhelming so actually speaking of them gives them more purpose. Doing this is an art form. Its not easy. When we let go of things to find our own voice how we go about expressing it then becomes the issue. Not everyone may have the finances and grand opportunities before them to further their development. It is then decided how one makes the best of what they already have in hopes that one day it shall pay off. Sometimes an artists just wants to see development in their own work. I know that speaks truth for myself. This is just something that I do. It becomes be, it is then apart of me.
As I continue on this month learning roles for productions I’m finding the process very interesting. Each rehearsal I am shifting gears from one subject matter to another. The same would apply to dance style.
It wasn’t until last night I discovered how big the production of Sleeping Beauty could actually be. We were rehearsing the Prolouge and I had to witness all the bodies dressing the studio floor trying to figure out cues of when to do what. I then had to find my place within the somewhat organized chaos but ended up working out fine. The creation of Art is not always a beautiful procedure. There is trial, error, mistakes and changes. The final product however is the result of all the invested time of work.
From there another rehearsal is attened that night for the Burlesque Nutcracker which will open next month as well. Different setting, space, and mind set. I love it. At the end of the day I’m not stuck in one place. I guess that is what I wanted to strive for a long while ago. Now that it is upon me Im able to further value my creative process of working upon different productions. It is my goal that I accomplish what is asked for these productions and complete them with the best integrity.
I am opening my perspective more as I continue to work on these productions. I have found myself engaging in more conversation with other artists in which makes things more interesting. I love being an Artists. Being around others then allows me to realize I’m not the only one.