Blood Language was intended to be an evening length, live performance set to premiere in Fall 2021 at the Cedar Cultural Center. When rehearsals and residency plans were interrupted I chose to pivot to an online archive to feature the conceptual content as a testimonial of the living impact of the work. This allowed me to use the funding acquired to compensate the collaborators in full, early into the pandemic when many of us were experiencing financial changes and challenges. The impact of the pandemic was and still is felt in the body; perhaps felt as anxiety, distraction, depression, longing, or many other complex feelings that take up space and attention, we were then and still are experiencing a collective trauma. The Blood Language ensemble continued to rehearse virtually until the murder of George Floyd and the immediate responses and calls for racial justice and an abolition uprising. Many of us are involved in community organizing and live in or near South Minneapolis. We paused to focus on community care, on frontline support, and to allow our attention to respond to the emergent needs of our communities.
This work could never resume in the form it was being created in, it must change and evolve, I must change and evolve, I am not the same. For nearly a year I’ve been grieving the performance I wanted to birth, grieving because I miss creative process in shared space, with limbic connections, with the potential of touch…grieving because of the immensity of the moment, with all the heartbreak, all the rage, all the hope swirling together in a masked, physical distanced reality. The grief, commitment to letting go, and devotion to change led to this archive.
An article came out recently in Dance Magazine, on March 4th, 2021 by Sydnie Mosley, titled I Have No Desire To Produce a Performance, Live or Livestreamed, until the pandemic is over. I’ll Wait.
Sydnie offers these questions;
As we embark on year two of the pandemic, here are some questions you might want to consider:
The grieving process brought us to this virtual archive and has seeded future growth. Blood Language was a sequel to Bruja // Fugitive Majesty, a solo performance where my work with archetypes and identity/bio-mythology began. Pamela Z, a Bay Area composer, said in a recent interview, “The pandemic has made us all filmmakers”. Which is somewhat true of the seed this grief produced. The archetype work will continue with a third chapter, making it a trilogy. I’m excited to blend souvenirs of content, with current threads of decolonizing relationships between bodies and land into the third iteration of this work, a dance film, Lineas de Sangre.