Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
“I've known Erica for many years and witnessed her blossoming into the teacher she is today. Her dance sessions incorporate the power of mythology to give us direction in our transformations through the mystery and magic of our own rhythms, the creativity we call on in our lives. Erica's DOWH sessions are always well researched, and carefully planned with open dance, partner exercises, a flow between movement and resting while Erica guides our visions towards integrating a greater whole within ourselves, in the relationships in our lives, our harmony with the forces of the universe. It is her loving care for the gentle and deep nurturing of women, our often fraught and splintered self-images and connections in an ever-changing world, in a safe and welcoming space that drew me to her Dance Our Way Home practice. In this practice I have found compassion and a celebration of us, as we are, as well as support for who we would like to become, the realization of our dreams.”
Brenda Clews, Writer, Artist
Brenda Clews is a poet and painter living in Toronto, Canada. Born in Zimbabwe, and having spent a childhood in the jungles of Zambia, she embraces the dance of shamanic healing that DOWH offers. She is a developmental editor, a tutor, a certified Kundalini yoga instructor. Published in literary journals, her work shown in art shows, she is developing an aesthetic of multiplicities, of our beings as prisms, in which dance is a central metaphor for living and understanding our lives. Read Brenda's poem "Bramble Rose" and writing "Erica's Dance Our Way Home". A small videopoem she created after the Solstice Ecstatic Dance in June 2009 may be seen on her Celestial Dancers page of her website, Art & Writings.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
A Globe & Mail series, forthcoming through the next week. I found the first two disturbing, painful. Life is not just worse than ever for women in Kandahar, but life-threateningly dangerous. How, after the short period of optimism and hope, some shedding of the burka for the veil, bravely venturing out to schools, to work, did things turn back into a life that the women say is worse than that under the Taliban? Then there was 'a reason' for the attacks & torture, now there isn't - just a whole city become psychopath. Scary. Sad. Tragic.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
Direct link to Grünemusik's 'Nyx' on Jamendo - 6 tracks, about 30 minutes.
You can download this album for free if you wish. It carries a Creative Commons License.
Profound experimental music for inner journeys...
A large vision. I listened to 30 sec of the first track last night and downloaded without reading the notes. This morning, out with the dog in the morning air, I listened.
And I thought how far some of our musicians have moved from 'traditional' music, though I was not thinking of the Orient but of the European concert. Melody and rhythm don't exist in this album in the traditional sense.
There is a beat, but it is organic. As if we are moving through a deep underground cave. Echoes. Stalagtites. Distant water where diving is so deep as to be depthless. Strange sea creatures in those black waters of the lakes in the underground caves. Ecstatic diving, bubbles, cool pure water.
As we move through the dark cool chambers of the cave, its damp limestone walls, light cascades in occasionally. Ebullient. Nourishment for our earthbound bodies.
The woman singing is ethereal, like a Greek siren calling, or an angel healing, she is both, and a vocaloid who is aesthetically crafted.
We move through Nyx as if in a movie. I felt an archetypal narrative unfolding in my depths. The "Primordial goddess of the night"... wow! Yes! I felt her, strongly, in my first listening, before referring to the notes.
The drums throughout hold everything together for me. They are my link to traditional music, tribal music, and the power of the Orient beats here too.
Fukataku's drumming anchors the subterranean journey of this soundscape. This soundscape in 6 sections - organic sonic world of strange sounds and energies and things sweeping, by, close, far, ebulliently, darkly, it's almost a ghost world, and yet more primal than that. The human and the animal and the synthesized all co-alesque in this deeply mythological, archetypal music that is ambient and trance and has flavours of traditional Japanese music which takes the listener through a deep inner journey in the dark and mysterious places of the soul.
Photo of cave from David Darling.
From Nyx's album notes:
The primordial goddess of the night. Dark ambient atmosphere with Miku-dub.
Notes on tracks:
1) Melisma singing of the vocaloid Miku in the eastern Asia flavor.
2) Electric ambient dub in three parts with vocaloid's chant.
3) A dub version segued from the previous track.
4) Aether is the elemental god of the "Bright, Glowing, Upper Air." Minimal sequence of electric piano diverges.
5) Nyx, the goddess of the night, appears from the bottom of dark ancient Chaos. Based on a session with Fukataku, the drummer.
6) A short sketch in five. The vocaloid Miku sings the last one verse to fade out.
Grünemusik is the name of a unit owned by hikaru (nankado). He's been publishing experimental-pop tunes since 2000 in Japan.
Original CD-Rs internationally available on-line at his official website.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
What I wrote, which didn't please me:
Less is more. I forget this on the short ride in the elevator.
The self is contained in its demeanor.
The demeanor in the business suit in the high security corporate world in the role. It is professional, underplayed. Wealth glitters everywhere in diamond rings, Rolex watches, talk of trips, events. Hinted. Happily. Less is more; more is more; a code for what is secure, safe.
A way of sitting, like a bird on a branch, sleeping. Upright. Aware, awake, lucid dreaming.
Allowing strange logic. Deep inner mind unfolding dream image sequences.
Rushing past the moment catching up with us.
Faint etchings of the body on the back of the eyelids, like bird scratchings. Strange, thin stick things in suits.
In the park at lunch, a man shouting, furious anger. People placidly watching. His emotion rises like a maniacal tide in him and unfurls spitting salt on the other man, who stands before him.
And again, he is asked to re-do the scene.
The park, lunchtime strollers, people sitting, birds pecking crumbs from the ground, fountain spraying into the air, sun, the film crew at a distance, the camera like a voyeur, the actors alone on the path, a light held by someone, a reflector by another.
That emotion found in his depths, brought curling in fury to the surface and spitting out his mouth.
I don't know how he does it.
Willing it, summoning inner dreampower, the believing heartmind, imagination.
When we watch the movie, we will be suspended in the reality of the dangerous narrative filmed in the sunny gentle park.
Wednesday, September 09, 2009
Perhaps this is the first paragraph.
Perhaps I've already begun.
Letting it stream.
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Thursday, September 03, 2009
The sound of French café music, slightly jazz, sensual, romantic, and a fountain spraying, pouring add to the surreal experience.
Rich forkful by forkful I eat a Napoleon, vanilla cream custard, flake pastry, fresh strawberries, with a smooth yet bitter coffee. My dessert swims in its vanilla cream on a large platter on an outdoor iron table and I am seated in a wicker chair that rests on a floor of polished field stone tiles. Large planters holding Ficus trees and other foliage line the edge of the patio - like a street café in Valencia, or any cosmopolitan European city. There are green and red and yellow canvas umbrellas over some of the tables.
Is this decoration, or does it serve a purpose in the glass-filtered sun? The sun that makes my netbook screen almost impossible to clearly see. The same dancing light is on my lap. I take cell phone photographs.
Santiago Calatrava, a Spanish architect, sculptor and engineer designed Brookfield Place in downtown Toronto. There are resemblances to the Eaton Centre, and I discover in an Internet search that a Canadian architectural firm, Bregman & Haman, constructed both.
An old bank building, in restored condition, is one of the buildings inside the glass structure and which you pass as if you were walking down a pedestrian-only street. Once it was whipped by winds and ice or baked in the hot Summer sun, now it dwells within a light-filled architectual sculpture. Is this a futuristic rendition of the bubbles that might contain our cities of the future? The old building stands without mourning the loss of rain or windborne air, as if realizing a dream of a protected and peaceful existence.
We walk past the building from another century over glass squares of radiating light.
Light resplendent above and below us.