official mission

HERE/NOW exists to increase and diffuse knowledge
involving the intersection of Dance and Music.

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LOCATION: Open Flight Studio (OFS) 4205 University Way NE / 98105
SEATING: 730-8pm
SHOW: 8-945pm
ENTRY: $8 suggested donation
BEVERAGES: inspired selection of healthy cans and bottles
MERCHANDISE: packaged DVDs of past installments

(Please read Legal Notice at bottom of right column prior to attending. Thanks!)

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Sunday, June 27, 2010

Installment 5 (6/19/10)

|select image for enlarged version|

Pictured above standing (l to r) are Jessica Jobaris, Allie Hankins, Christian Swenson, Steve Barsotti, Karl Scheer, Trey Gunn, Beth Fleenor and Samantha Boshnack and sitting (l to r) are Shannon Kay Stewart, Elia R. Mrak Blumberg, Pablo Cornejo, Wade Madsen, Scott Davis, Briana Jones, Paul Kikuchi and Paurl Walsh.


Before the Belltown neighborhood's 1st Ave micro-district finalized its plans to design and construct an underground tunnel forever easing the already frictionless passageway between it and the Eastside (open on Friday and Saturday evenings only, of course), before the Crocodile ceased its questionably epic campaign to accumulate enough dust to rival the Southern Plains of Oklahoma in the late 1930s, before the smoking ban saw the city's tobacco addicts inhaled and exhaled out of nighttime establishments perfectly mirroring the physical choreography of the habit itself, before the Seattle Art Museum felt it necessary to not only store a handful of sculptures outside but call it a "sculpture park" and in a what-the-hell's-the-point-then move insist they not be touched by anyone, before all this and more there was a gorgeously dilapidated faux gold wristwatch of a bar called the Rendezvous. With its sublimely tattered surfaces, classier than classy early bird clientele and historically active vintage screening room cum nano-theater hosting all variety of music, theater and other live performances it gave all those looking for a salty experience a wide-armed welcome mat of a home. The theater, known as the Jewelbox, had little to no efficient ventilation, and considering that a smoldering cigarette ash could always be counted on to be no more than two people away from you at every given moment, there was little you could do except realize that at some point in the past you had made a decision. And that decision, harboring more wisdom than you could have ever guessed possible, quietly revolved around spending a portion of your evening inside the belly of the Rendezvous: a tiny space unofficially yet distinctly dedicated to the art of making it through an event spiritually intact and consequently, not unlike those whose shoulders rub against one another during the abysmal stresses of gun-to-gun war, an admirable sense of camaraderie is forged between friends and strangers alike. Yeah, the Jewelbox was warm. ("Man, it's really warm in here." "Really? You don't say?") Yeah, there was likely more breathable oxygen inside a bright red helium balloon, but that was almost what made that place as incredibly engaging and alive as it was. It could be argued that with a certain degree of heightened physical discomfort came the cosmic balance reward of heightened spiritual syncopation. This is how it felt anyway. This is how I remember that place.

This latest installment pushed its way into the night in a similar fashion. It was warm. It was filled to the seams with so many engaging and talented people, participants and audience members alike. And it had that rarest of things in the Pacific Northwest: the urgent feeling that at any moment something sincerely bold was about to happen and to blink just might be the most foolish thing one could do. And I'm not going to lie, I could feel my heart swelling with an acute waterfall of pride. Had we somehow created what the old Jewelbox had so charmingly managed to create? If so, on a purely socio-cultural level, things are headed in a very righteous direction, I thought to myself in between fade-in's and fade-out's. A very righteous direction indeed.


The evening's duets in chronological order:

1. Scott Davis (D) + Samantha Boshnack (M)
2. Elia R. Mrak Blumberg (D) + Briana Jones (M)
3. Jessica Jobaris (D) + Paul Kikuchi (M)
4. Shannon Kay Stewart (D) + Paurl Walsh (M)


5. Christian Swenson (D) + Trey Gunn (M)
6. Wade Madsen (D) + Karl Scheer (M)
7. Allie Hankins (D) + Steve Barsotti (M)
8. Pablo Cornejo (D) + Beth Fleenor (M)

If you attended this installment take a minute and share your thoughts. What did you feel was the most engaging moment of the evening? Whose duet resonated with you the most? How did you hear about HERE/NOW and why did you feel as if you wanted to attend? Were you familiar with any of the participants? Did the evening serve as a catalyst for discussion amongst friends?


1 comment:

  1. From the Inside

    I was at peace, as both witness and participant.
    Each duet carried the inevitable search for something other than ourselves, as improv begs of us this difficult task.
    Each duet fortunately fell into these moments of a temporary transcendence of self. A place where the training and mind fall away. This is where I could feel myself, and audience find its breath, stop its thinking, and we both could just glide along that single ineffable tangent, delighted only in the aftermath. Absorption to some degree had been met,from each performer and observer, and it felt as if little presents of humanity fell into our laps.
    Performing is really a strange thing to DO. Putting yourself on the spot may be the antithesis of what everyone thinks; for some of us it is not about look at me, okay well only a little. But mostly, it is about "can I speak with you?
    Where are we now?
    Can we talk? Let me listen. Can you hear this? Can you sense this? I believe I can sense you. Can we know this moment, and only this moment, together?" This is where improv begs us to move beyond ourselves, and for audience members as well.
    My Gawd, it is a tall order and demands much of the viewer...attention, patience...the root basis of love. Yes, the audience, and performer, must meet the moment with their love. There is love in this exchange. There was love in the room that night for sure, and other things;
    benevolence, boredom, violence, some contriving, transcending, and certainly, love.
    I know what it is to watch improv and walk away befuddled or feel thieved of my time. I know the difficulty it takes to move beyond this, and relax with what is happening; the gift of confusion, the gift of someone's madness, the gift of their aliveness. It can really be both a pain in my ass and a stunning honor. Having been on both sides, I am reminded, through these years of witnessing and participating, that all I/we have to do is arrive, open.
    For those who could not find it, their love, that space of love to observe and support, I offer
    "Meet me Here,
    again, and
    where are you? Are we able to receive? Available for our foibles, a god-moment, some laughs? Eventually, you will discover, this is truly

    Jessica Jobaris