Thank you to everyone who donated and supported this project "courage".
Both the Friday night and Saturday night performances were very, very nice. For everyone who came - isn't it true that the sound of that stone flute is not easily forgotten?
It was nice to chat with everyone after the show, sipping a small cup of wine and relaxing.
When the photographer gets some of his images back to me, I'll post them on the ruinedmap website, and post a link here.
Mr. Yokozawa was impressed with the audience feedback. He kept commenting that to do a piece like "courage" in downtown Honolulu was a "miracle" and how connected he felt with the Hawaiian soil.
Now we're only about 24 short hours till we go "live" with this project..! I will be sending out a barrage of emails asking people for their mailing addresses and such, so that I can give the rewards to everyone! At that time too, I'll have the full backer list on hand, and you can look at the website to see your beautiful names listed as supporting this project!
And now, let me tell you all about ruinedmap's newest dancer, Spencer Garrod.
I actually just met Spencer in March! She heard about my show from Gwen, and I knew from the very first "tryout" rehearsal with her that I'd definitely want her to be in my show: while being open to my vigorous choreographies, her movements have a certain strength and vivid grace.
I don't know her history as well, since I just met her, but I sure am glad she's onboard this show. Now I'm going to rely a little bit on her to tell us her personal history:
Spencer started dancing at the age of three at Ballet Hawaii. Many Nutcrackers later, she left the island to attend Wesleyan University in Connecticut. There she discovered her love for a great variety of dance forms, including modern, contact improvisation, capoeira, West African dance, and Bharata Natyam, yoga, and puppetry. Spencer graduated in 2009 with a double major in math and dance. Her senior thesis synthesized existential aesthetics with dynamic systems theories to create a context for her experimental choreography.
Since returning to Hawaii Spencer has presented new work at the 2010 Black Box Black Blocks Festival, trained with Capoeira Besouro Hawaii, and performed with the UH Mānoa Dance Department, Convergence Dance Theatre, Kelly Wadlegger Dance, and most recently with IONA Contemporary Dance Theatre in La Madonna. Her butoh journey has only just begun--she participated in an Eiko and Koma workshop in 2008 and while she felt the performances to be extremely beautiful, at the age of 19 she found it impossible to be so still! Training with ruinedmap has been a mind-opening, body-opening adventure and she hopes the start of many to come.
Spencer Garrod Fast Facts
favorite food: pickles
least favorite food: horseradish
favorite drink: coffee
lease favorite drink: Mountain Dew
favorite colors: green or purple
favorite pastime: going out to eat
Western Zodiac: Gemini
Chinese Zodiac: Rabbit
most used adjective: amazing
Well! I was amazed and so happy to see the news that we made our target! I was in North Finland, looking at my email through someone's Nokia cell phone, and saw the news...it made my day!
And yet, despite that we made the $1300 goal, still there have been some donations further - it is a nice feeling that still some people are interested enough to donate beyond our target.
Of course, I have to say thank you to everyone for your donations, and I'll be looking forward to meeting you all at the performances in July!
We've got six days left - it's not over yet, and so I thought I'd write about my good friend and dancer Gwen Arbaugh.
I first met Gwen back in 2001, when she was the strange girl living downstairs at my form at Antioch. I was vaguely aware that she practically (or literally!) lived in her small studio in the Art Department, that she blew glass, danced, and was skilled at any number of fine arts.
A couple years later, we ended up studying abroad together in Japan, where she was super active in the dance community of Seika University - and of course - I got to know her as a person. And what a wonderfully strange person Gwen was! I vividly remember her coming back to the dorm on a hot summer day, drenched to the skin: she had decided to bathe in the river that cuts through downtown Kyoto.
Gwen eventually danced in my senior project our last year at Antioch - we lost touch for a few years after that, but then she decided to study Dance Ethnology at UH Manoa, and once again I relied on her to be the backbone of my dance works: I can say that it's coming up on eight years that she's been dancing with ruinedmap!
Gwen's been dancing a long time: she's studied African and Caribbean dance as a child in her primarily black neighborhood; she's been with professional Ballet and Bellydance companies; she has studied Tango, Swing, Okinawa, Jazz, Polka, and a host of other dance forms; and now these days she can be seen in Filipino dance concerts and performers all around Oahu. One of her little known talents is that she is fluent in Japanese Sign Language!
At graduate school at UH, she specialized in Nihon-Buyo (Japanese classical Kabuki dance), and has worked in Japan with renowned Nihon-Buyo masters Fujima Kankazu and Nishikawa Senrei. In Nihonbuyo, she finds deep sense of connection between lyrics and external movements used to impact an audience.
In the ruinedmap show "overcome," a solo, she was selected to perform at the 10 Days on the Island Festival in Tasmania. The Australians received her performance with great enthusiasm. She was praised by the Honolulu Advertiser as giving an "arresting" and "compelling" for the same piece when we performed it in Honolulu.
I'm quite proud of my 10 year relationship with such a passionate and talented dancer. Though she has seen my dance company through many lean years and changes in style, but Gwen has always remained one of the most important supports that keeps us viable and creating art on stage. You could call her the midwife of ruinedmap!
Gwen Arbaugh Fast Facts
-currently fond of frozen yogurt and pomegranate
least favorite foods: anything with meat or mushrooms
favorite drink: guava juice or tea
least favorite drink: soda of any kind
favorite color: none of your business
favorite pastime: dancing, reading, and writing
Western Zodiac: Libra
Chinese Zodiac: Rooster
most used adjective: ridiculous!
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Pledge $5 or moreYou selected
Our sincere thanks and acknowledgment in the program - and meet and greet with the artists afterwards, with free snacks and drinks. (And if you live off island, we'll mail you a copy of the program!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $15 or moreYou selected
Our sincere thanks and acknowledgment in the program - +signed poster of show ...and meet and greet with the artists afterwards, with free snacks and drinks. (And if you live off island, we'll mail you the poster!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
Our sincere thanks and acknowledgment in the program - +signed poster of show +an official Ruinedmap Dance Company TENUGUI (Japanese hand towel) +meet and greet with the artists after the performance, with free snacks and drinks (And if you live off island, we'll send you everythingi!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $70 or moreYou selected
Our sincerest thanks, acknowledgment in the program - +one ticket to performance, +signed poster of show +TWO different official Ruinedmap Dance Company Tenugui, +DVD of the piece +meet and greet (And if you live off island, we'll send everything to your home!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $200 or moreYou selected
Our most sincerest thanks, PPRODUCER credit in the program and website - +TWO tickets to performance +signed poster of show +TWO different official Ruinedmap Dance Company Tenugui +DVD of the piece +CD of recorded works by Stone Flute player Yokozawa Kazuya, and...of course, meet and greet (And if you live off island, we'll send everything to your home!)Estimated delivery:
Pledge $500 or moreYou selected
Our most sincerest thanks, EXECUTIVE PRODUCER credit in the program and website - +TWO tickets to performance, +TWO different official Ruinedmap Dance Company Tenugui, +DVD of the piece, +CD of recorded works by Stone Flute player Yokozawa Kazuya and...of course, meet and greet (And if you live off island, we'll send everything to your home)Estimated delivery:
- (40 days)