“When Esa finds a box of black and white photographs in the back of her girlfriend Hija’s closet she doesn’t know the hidden histories her discovery will unearth. Told in a series of vignettes, this multi-narrative memory play traces one woman’s history back four generations as we are introduced to a cast of Mexican runaways, Chinese refugees, and fiercely independent women trying to let go of binding gender roles. An intimate story about the fluidity of borders, time and the historic confluence of China, Mexico and the United States.” - Virginia Grise, author -rasgos asiaticos

Stacks Image 2460
Development of migrations began in Fall 2012, when Vicki (Virginia) called me to say "I don't think rasgos is a play, I think it is a dance. Will you take a look at it and let me know what you think?" Vicki and I first collaborated in 2009 on the development of my project Undone: androgyne, gender and humanism, and during this process our similar affinities for poetic text/image and kinetic semaphore turned into a rewarding creative process. So, I was excited to work with her again.

After reading through the text several times, I called her back, in love with the script, but a little apprehensive about taking on a project so clearly imbued with cultural histories, languages and dynamics so different from my own. (rasgos asiaticos is an autobiography of Vicki's Mexican, Chinese heritage and deals with the confluence of these two cultures with Vicki's own American upbringing). 

I asked her, "Knowing my cultural background, why did you ask me to choreograph this work?" and she answered " . . . because, I love the way you use kinetic and visual image to speak." 

Vicki's belief in my work along with the fact that we would be in close collaboration, gave me the confidence to take on this project. We have since conducted two workshop investigations with performers, held many meetings, applied for many grants and envisioned many different possible outcomes to the work.  At this point I am committed to the long-term development of migrations, as a rewarding process unto itself.

When the work comes to fruition, which it will, we are excited to share a new experience in theater. Our vision for migrations includes an un-conventional venue, in which the audience become house guests of Hija and Esa. Time and location will be transformed by light, image and video, history and the present coexist, and text and physical language will interweave, offering a deeper insight into and experiences of the characters than either medium alone can express.

Our vision is big and takes confluence of talent, venue, and funding. We have made it to the second round of two major grants and continue to work hard to find the necessary support.

Next Up: I will travel to NYC this September for a weekend workshop with Vicki and the Director.
Stacks Image 11492
Stacks Image 11500
Stacks Image 11508