EMPAC was my first residency and I don't think I was prepared for that type of immersion. 15+ hour days? Yipes! But in the end the tech was there and the script and structure was there (big ups to Sarah Gancher!). Honestly, though, by the end, there wasn't much of my mind there. Let's just say I'm glad to be home and resting peacefully.
of my favorite (and harrowing) moments was our brief showing for
invited guests and fellow resident, Dimitris Papaioannou, who was
working on his new piece, Primal Matters. Papaioannou is a Greek
avant-garde choreography who choreographed the opening ceremonies of the
2004 Athens Olympic Games. He had some amazing input for our show and
talked to us about the use of the "ridiculous" in our piece. Such a
gracious and insightful man. We were all lucky enough to see his work
and help him in return with our comments. Something that was very moving
for me was to hear his own frustration with his work and where he felt
it was failing. To see such a well established artist have doubts about
his work put me at ease with the doubts that I have about my own work
with Hand2Mouth. It help me recognize what it means to be an artist and
what comes with the territory, that we will always have those moments of
doubt and they are what push us forward. I am thankful to EMPAC for
creating an environment where an exchange like this could occur.
a side note, the perfect storm that created EMPAC's coffee shortage
while we were there was having a Greek choreographer and a Portland, OR
performance troupe at the same residency. See you in NYC!