“Dance is dangerous, joyous, sexual, holy, disruptive, contagious, it breaks the rules. It can happen anywhere, anytime, with anyone and everyone, and it’s free. Dancing insists we take up space, we go there together in community. Dance joins us and pushes us to go further and that is why it’s at the center of ONE BILLION RISING.”
Art is the most direct and visceral way of speaking to people across boarders, and barriers. Art motivates, art empowers, art creates news ways of thinking.
As part of Eve Ensler’s – the Tony Award author of the Vagina Monologues [http://www.eveensler.org] – global campaign One Billion Rising to end the violence against women and girls, musicians, choregraphers, visual artists, poets, writers are rising up on February 14th, 2013.
“One in three women on the planet
will be raped or beaten in her lifetime.
One billion women violated is an atrocity.
One billion women dancing is a revolution.”
Published on Dec 31, 2012
A Spoken Word tribute, and a plea for India’s Daughters. Written, recorded and produced on one sleepless night, Dec 30, 2012.
Written, composed and arranged by Anuj Rastogi.
(c) Copyright Anuj Rastogi (Omnesia Records) 2012
Tonight, as I tuck her into her crib for the night
I stare down at her, under the waning moonlight
As on all other such evenings, I kiss her goodnight and wish away any fright
That she may feel while asleep, or awake
With all my might_ I wish I could make it all go away
Every crime, every curse,
Every danger, every hearse
That carries away the bodies of souls departed
Or in tonight’s case, the soul of a country that needs to be restarted
A country, raped by a mother’s own sons, brothers, and fathers
A country that has failed every one of its daughters
Tonight is the first night that I’ve wondered, maybe even wished,
What Mother India could’ve been had her sons instead been drowned in a dish
Had families cursed their misfortune for having a boy
And looked in envy at their neighbors unbridled joy
Celebrating their good fortune for having a daughter;
Perhaps our sons should’ve been lead away to slaughter,
One-by-one before they should plunder, or chance an act of such moral blunder
For centuries Mother India has been MOTHER INDIA,
And like Jocasta, violated by Oedipus every fort night,
Raping his own mother, cloaked in the illusion of non-existent virtue
Dear sons, why am I left feeling I must now curse you?
A land that venerates the Goddess, dresses her scantily and then
Insists she be modest
A land that elevates women to positions of political status
Lies naked and wounded, questioning her chastice
This land rides on her back to procreate and drive economic progress
And then questions her character should she dare to step out in a dress
This land so fertile for its women, lies morally barren of more than a few men who value what is within.
Rape is an act of imposed power
But it is not simply caused when a beast deflowers
It is one spoke, but one extension
Of a social ill that few dare to mention
In our dowries, in our words
We do nothing but seek to curb
The spirit of the truly free woman
WE ARE the problem
Men rape women.
Women rape women.
Mother’s In-Law rape women
Protectors of law rape women.
Politicians rape women.
Film makers rape women.
Ancient Traditions rape women.
Modern police stations rape women.
Silence rapes women.
Speaking out rapes women.
Apathy rapes women.
You and me rape women.
Every minute, of every day
Somewhere in this ancient country,
Be it physical or parliamentary
A woman is raped — her spiritual dignity, once draped
In self-respect has through decades of social neglect
Been left to wither and rot, in plain sight
This is NOT the country of my moral parents
This is not the planet I want for my children
This is NOT the world I want my daughter to grow up in.
And so here I sit, 3000 miles away
Proud to be brown, but ashamed to be a man.
I am a man. A father. A son.
How do I tomorrow face my little one.
And tell her the monsters of the dark were once little boys,
Whose mothers and fathers bred a society armed with penile toys.
And when one woman dared to speak, she was shut down, or drowned in the noise,
Of a society that values its life-giving daughters less than its public poise?
As I lie here, my little girl asleep in her crib.
I am in anguish, she sleeps still, I’m torn right next to her.
When she asks me about India, What will I tell her?
Will it still be my heart’s home, full of history and culture
Or will it be truly overrun by soul-less vultures?
Perhaps this fire that burns,
Sustained and relentless, is what Amanat’s sacrifice has earned
Perhaps tonight is like every other night before it;
And every woman in Delhi will walk in fear from her brothers, the police and the state.
Or perhaps tonight is the night that we turn the tables on fate.
And embrace our shared anger, and our common hate
For the ills of our world, and the suffering of our girls.
Perhaps, tonight is THE night that through Amanat’s plight, WE can awake.
Stay Tuned! We’ve registered to hold a “rising” here in Reno on this global day. Watch:
“Break the Chain” aims to raise awareness around the world about V-Day’s fastest escalating global campaign to date, ONE BILLION RISING. The ONE BILLION RISING campaign began as a call to action based on the staggering statistic that 1 in 3 women on the planet will be beaten or raped during her lifetime. With the world population at 7 billion, this adds up to more than ONE BILLION WOMEN AND GIRLS. On 14 February 2013, V-Day’s 15th anniversary, activists, writers, thinkers, celebrities and women and men across the world will come together to express their outrage, strike, dance, and RISE in defiance of the injustices women suffer, demanding an end at last to violence against women.
“Spirit: A Journey in Dance, Drums, & Song” is a music, dance and percussion spectacle combining contemporary music with the songs, chants and dances of the Native American culture. A fascinating show!
I’ve discovered 7 segments, This is the first dance in the show: “Urban Overture.”
Saturday May 5th – that’s right Cinco de Mayo – joining Cirque Du Mar at the Underground.
Featuring: Blackrock City Allstars, Carnival Games, Dragonfly Aerials, Boho Hoops, Photobooth, D6 – Dr. Jones – MAXX Polishuk – Coachking – Jek Yellowhair and ADM with the Bumpreno crew – Heidilicious – Jeremy Curl – Dusty Bacon – Alcheme… and more.
Tickets are just 15.00 in advance or 20.00 at the door. See you at the Underground!
Sierra Cinemas, Nevada City, Sun Apr 22 – JOFFREY: MAVERICKS OF AMERICAN DANCE – 1 hr 28 min – Unrated. A look at the Joffrey Ballet, the groundbreaking cultural treasure known as the first truly American dance company. Narrated by Tony and Emmy Award winner Mandy Patinkin and directed by Bob Hercules (Bill T. Jones: A Good Man), the film documents how the Joffrey revolutionized American ballet by daringly combining modern dance with traditional ballet technique, combining art with social statement and setting ballets to pop and rock music scores. The film features rare excerpts from many seminal Joffrey works including Astarte, Trinity and Billboards. As a special treat, Nevada County natives Michael Levine and Maia Wilkins, alumni of the Joffrey Ballet, will be present to talk about their experiences and answer questions.
Co-founded in 1956 by visionary teacher Robert Joffrey and dancer Gerald Arpino, who would become their principal choreographer, The Joffrey Ballet began as a DIY dance company of six dancers touring the United States in a borrowed station wagon. What started as a childhood dream quickly grew into one of the world’s most exciting and prominent ballet companies. Together, Joffrey and Arpino transformed the face of dance with bold new perspectives for edgy ballets that challenged conventions. Aggressive touring took the Company from school auditoriums across America’s Heartland, to the White House at Jacqueline Kennedy’s invitation, and on to Russia for a month-long tour during the height of the Cold War, and beyond. They also garnered extensive media attention for their daring originality, which included appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show, the cover of Time magazine, and in major motion pictures such as Save the Last Dance and Robert Altman’s The Company (which is based on the Joffrey).
Joffrey: Mavericks of American Dance weaves a wealth of rare archival footage and photographs along with interviews featuring former and current Joffrey star dancers, showing the full history of the Company from its founding to the present. It describes how the Joffrey repeatedly resurrected itself after devastating financial and artistic setbacks and introduced cutting-edge choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Laura Dean and Margo Sappington to larger audiences.
The film features rare excerpts from many seminal Joffrey works including Astarte, Trinity and Billboards, as well as breakthrough collaborations with choreographers Twyla Tharp (Deuce Coupe), Kurt Jooss (The Green Table) and Leonide Massine (Parade).
L Martina Young will be hosting a dance lab in May that I am very excited about: 100 GESTURES: a poetics of the body, an ethics of compassion. Here’s the PDF flyer (click the image) with the deets, and links to Martina’s website and registration page at Yoga Loka:
:: Discover Martina here, and find the registration info @ Yoga Loka
“An incredible collection of some of global music’s finest musicians (including Karsh Kale, Natacha Atlas, and Nitin Sawhney!!) have gathered to contribute exclusive tracks and remixes to help raise money for fusion pioneer Cheb i Sabbah’s health care costs, in his battle against cancer.”
Ali Maulaah (Janaka Selekta’s Sufi HiFi Remix) – Cheb I Sabbah
Aao Saiyo – Shabaz (Feat. Riffat Sultana & Sukhwat Ali)
Nomadic Sky – Karsh Kale, Natacha Atlas, Nitin Sawney
Nadagroove – Transglobal Underground
Sandstorm – Karsh Kale
Too Much 21st Century (Remixed by Cheb i Sabbah: The Delhi Dhol Mix) - Bauhaus
Ranjaabi New Mix – Karsh Kale & Midival Punditz
Ya Nari Revolution – Amina Annabi
Bante – Bill Laswell & Gigi
Freedom Is Free (Jef Stott Super Mix) – Opium Feat. MC Raï
Omri Coulu Leek – Natacha Atlas
Sabah – Mercan Dede
The Lonely Chamber – Azam Ali & Loga Ramin Torkian
Flame Of The Forest – Bombay Dub Orchestra (Feat. Kartik: Vocals & Violins – Sirishkumar: Tabla)
A Nomad Called Cheb i – Watcha Clan
Maha Maya – Jai Uttal
Sita Ram – Dub Kirtan All Stars (Feat. David Starfire – FreQ Nasty – Rik Sharaj)
Twilight (Raga Yaman Kalyan) – Pandit G.S. Sachdev
Naiharwa (Karsh Kale Mix) – Kailash Kher
Jai Ganesha (Mix For Chebiji) – Emam and Friends
Miyan Ki Todi – Humayun Khan: Vocals & Harmonium Salar Nader: Tabla
Ragini – Zakir Hussain: Tabla Kala Ramnath: Violin
Choreography – Lin Hwai-min
Music – Georgian Folk Songs (sung by Rustavi Choir)
Lighting Design – CHANG Tsan-tao
Set Design – Austin WANG
Costume Design – Taurus WAH
Props Design – YANG Cheng-yung SZU Chien-hua
“Songs of the Wanderers” was inspired by a novel on a Buddhist theme titled “Siddhartha” by Hermann Hesse. It depicts the journey of pilgrim wanderers fervently in search of inner peace. With 3.5 tones of golden rice grain on stage and music based on Georgian folk songs, the production has reached out to the audience of many lands and is acclaimed as “a dance of gold” by Lin.
Legendary ballet dancer, Mikhail Baryshnikov, has donated 35 boxes containing his personal archives — video recordings, photos, documents and letters — to the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. The incredible archives include some rare gems, such as videos where Baryshnikov can be seen practicing in Riga, Latvia (where he was born) as a young boy of 11 or 12 , doing exercises at the Vaganova School and working with such greats as Balanchine, Cunningham, Robbins and Graham. There is so much material that cataloging and digitizing is estimated to take at least three years, at which point it should be searchable by year, performance, dancer or choreographer. Baryshnikov has said that this archive represents his whole life. Considering that the 63-year-old is still working as a dancer, actor and founder of the Baryshnikov Arts Center in Manhattan, we are certain there is much more to come in his life.
Reno area residents on Saturday took part in the “Thriller” flash mob dance organized by Thrill the World. More than 100 ‘souls’ gathered at the Harrah’s Reno Plaza as part of the Thrill the World Flash mob dance that occurred around the world Saturday night.
Millions of Americans wear purple on Spirit Day as a sign of support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth and to speak out against bullying. Spirit Day was started in 2010 by teenager Brittany McMillan as a response to the young people who had taken their own lives. Observed annually on October 20, individuals, schools, organizations, corporations, media professionals and celebrities wear purple, which symbolizes spirit on the rainbow flag. Getting involved is easy — participants are asked to simply “go purple” on October 20 as we work to create a world in which LGBT teens are celebrated and accepted for who they are.
LaRonda Etheridge is one of the fitness instructors at the ACHIEVE Fitness studio where I teach is actively fighting Breast Cancer. A benefit is being organized on her behalf to help aid with the mounting medical costs. Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, what a perfect opportunity to make a timely local impact. Tickets can be purchased here, or at the locations listed on the flyer below.
The MLK Memorial was released from its cage of scaffolding today in preparation for its ceremonial dedication amidst 4 acres of prime real estate in the National Mall – situated between the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials on August 28th. This dedication falls on the 48th anniversary of King’s delivery of his “I have a dream” speech from a spot nearby.
Sculpted by Master Lei Yixin of China, it stands 30 feet tall and is quite an impressive work of public art. The first non-white, non-presidential edifice on the mall – epic!
Our nascent youth SEEDs
& Education through Dance} Program is now fully underway and has a
Check it out by clicking the leetle bug above, or check in on our progress over at: http://dadimaseeds.org.