Day 18: Saturday September 23
Saturday was a long day. It began in the morning with rehearsal for the duet, which ended up falling into the afternoon as Jamie simultaneously ran errands to prepare for the showing. To describe Saturday accurately is to first speak about the energy of Trinidad because Trinidad is all about the energy by which people move. Nothing is ever done "just so."
It rained fervently on and off all day. Through the rain, Jamie, with the help of a friend, shopped for fabric, bought drinks and other supplies, and saged the space. She would eventually prepare the studio for the showing much like a priest prepares a holy site--sweeping it clean, making a comfortable seating area with handmade pillows and fabric, fashioning a shrine of sorts for Eleggua, a candle, burning incense... This she did while managing people and things, making changes to the duet, and running the program, which went as follows:
7-8 pm: The audience of about 15 started to trickle in around 7 pm. Dance music pumped from inside as people gathered downstairs by the bar. A beautiful ambiance. A pervasive sense of love and joy was transferred from Kevon and Jamie as they warmly welcomed people to the space. Up until yesterday, Kevon and his father had applied fresh paint to the exterior studio walls, had uprooted and planted; had dug up the earth, created moldings and poured cement for an eventual stage and water fountain. An on-going project that began in June, when the space was an abandoned and overgrown yard. Welcome to East Yard!
8-9 pm: Welcome remarks by Kevon Foderingham
National anthem played by talented young steel pan musician, Ilori Waithe.
Introduction remarks by Jamie Philbert and Alanna Morris-Van Tassel
Piece #1 (movement sketches for Home, an excerpt of "Yam, Potatoe an' Fish!," choreography and performance by myself)
Musical transition by Ilori Waithe
Piece #2 ( an invocation for Eleggua, choreography Jamie Philbert. Performed by myself and Anna Noel)
Musical transition by Jamie on acoustic guitar
Piece #3 (Catharsis, excerpt from Assimilation Of My Tongue, choreography Jamie Philbert. Performed by myself.
Closing remarks by Jamie and myself
9 pm-2 am: LIME!
I throughly enjoyed sharing my work-in-progress with the invited audience on Saturday night. East Yard and Art On Purpose is a space that I now call FAMILY. That I know now as HOME.
Until the wee hours of the morning, 8 of us stayed to laugh and enjoy each other's company--with food, drink, music and other recreation. If I didn't hear it a thousand times: Jamie and Kevon are happy I am here and would love to have me back.
I will be back.