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a solo show confronting limitations and chronic humanity, performed through dance and spoken word with projections and original music
73 backers pledged $7,934 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$7,934

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Hi Folks! 

My name is Natalie Deryn Johnson. I’m a multi-media and improvisational performance artist based in NYC. I’m a dancer, choreographer, photographer, writer . . . all the things, and hopefully least of all a jack of these trades. I’ve been living in New York City for five years. This was never my intention, but a photography internship planted a seed that has grown into a life I could not have planned myself. The unexpected has been filled with both beautiful and uninvited experiences, which is to be expected. This is life after all. However, these jarring or uncomfortable moments, filled with grief and ultimately wholeheartedness, propelled me into the writing of a project that has come to be known as "Patient History | a movement memoire." 

This evening-length work, my first evening production in five years, is not explicitly a dance show, but more of a multi-sensory one woman show. 

Over the last two years in process of writing this performance, I have ventured into my fragility and proximity to loss, structuring a narrative that has been waiting for presence. I have now begun to invigorate these stories with poetics of movement, visual projection and an original sound score made in collaboration with Reed Kackley, a Brooklyn-based musician (Bio Below). All of these efforts are pushing me beyond my limits, which is saying something considering the comfort I usually have with weakness as beauty.

I want to invite an audience to talk about deeper and darker subjects, to laugh at me, certainly laugh with me, and hopefully allow space for reflection while taking witness of what can only be described as my intentions towards honesty and embodiment. Despite the alluding to despair, the show is not without comedy as even silly people experience chronic humanity.

This work is the junction of my body as home, creator, and performer: a commitment to personhood, witness-ship and advocacy, all of which creates a backbone to divulge the intimate for sake of community.

I perform as dancer mostly, but in all truth, I’m just a person, just a human . . . and that’s a big part of the multi-dimensional script, choreography and overall composition that I’ve worked towards. I’d say I wrote a play by accident and then rescued said play by returning to a place of intuitive story-telling, a documentarian escapade. So now, bleeding between genres of communication, with visuals contributed by myself and various artists on top of recorded audio and original music, I dance and talk my way through an evening of visibility. It’s been a whirlwind of an experience bringing the narrative to this stage of development. Now It’s time to come to you, which makes this a very exciting time as there is no more room for hiding. Plus, one doesn't know what they have made in the theater until they place themselves in the theater!

Ha!

So . . . In order to support the artists that have been commissioned thus far and the original work contributed to this show, including renowned photographer Paul B Goode, illustrator Jessica Olah and others . . . to cover the costs of rehearsal space, props/stage design, the performance venue, documentation, promotion and the hard working production team led by my Co-Producer Melani De Guzman, I ask for the generosity of the public. It means a lot to fulfill this project and pay respectfully the people that have made this vision possible, to make this conversation possible, a story that has given me no other option but to share it in what has been an utterly challenging performance undertaking with the tiny hope of sparking compassion, connection and insight.

Lofty goals, I know, but I can’t do it alone. And my bravery is in asking for assistance to create the premiere of what shall be an on-going movement in my art and public relations. 

This endeavor has humbled me greatly and I thank you for your ears and heart at this time. To have your attention is more than enough. But now it is my job to see this project through to its first rendition. I feel strongly, as does my team, that this project can bring to surface important topics while also providing a platform for depth of craft, the expansion of capacity to connect and communicate with integrity, while ultimately working towards the manifestation of transformative experiences.  

Patient History: let this be a shared experience. Let me be honest.

Performing on September 8th and 9th at Mister Rogers in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. 

_____________________________________

About our musician: 

Reed Kackley, the Brooklyn-based producer operating under the moniker BAILE, makes texturally rich dance music inspired by house and downtempo.

Over the past 2 years Kackley has been tapped to remix artists like Beacon, Baio, Mansionair, Doe Paoro & Tusks. In addition to receiving airplay by Pete Tong (BBC Radio 1), he has had multiple tracks in the top 5 of Hype Machine’s ‘Most Popular’ chart and has received coverage from sources like Mixmag, Data Transmission, Fader, Deep House Amsterdam & Earmilk.

2017 finds Kackley releasing a steady stream of singles & A/B sides that channel his love of somber & atmospheric dance compositions.

On the subject of his creative process, BAILE explains:

“When I’m listening to music I find myself more drawn to individual sounds and textures within a song rather than the songs as a whole. During the writing process, I focus on juxtaposing raw elements with synthetic ones, creating something that can feel crisp and clean but also organic and natural. I’m always striving for a really open, clear mix where every nuance of each sound can be heard.”

Risks and challenges

The risk of working towards a project of this nature rests in its exposure of the human spirit and the culmination of so many moving parts into a fully realized performance. This is also its beauty. Other than the creative process itself, the real obstacle is fundraising as I am committed to the fulfillment of this show and to the venue that has welcomed me to perform in September. There is enthusiasm for and belief in this story by everyone on board. It is just a matter of rallying behind the fortitude to continue the work to its end. Of course, much of the performance rests on the completion of the sound score and the taming of a body that can enter into a performance setting with both improvisational and structured execution, which involves bravery and dedication. However, this is something I am equipped with and take very seriously. Plus, a production of this kind is based on the validity of living art and the presence created in the room once the lights go up and the script falls away. I am not aiming for perfection. I am aiming for connection. So, I recognize that plans do not always go as planned and that this show asks of me the potential for what some call failure, but this narrative will find a way. However, without financial help, it is difficult to keep working on this project or with my musician and team to bring this kind of storytelling to the public. The risk is my embarrassment, which is negligible. The real risk is not having the money to have a conversation that desperately needs to be had in a community setting.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    fist pump

    Our team will give you a shout out on our social platforms for your consideration!

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    high five

    Stickers and Workshop! This level of donation grants you entree into a workshop lead by Natalie on the physicality of intimacy. The workshop entails research into the authenticity and accessibility of the dancing body with guided exercises and phrase work utilizing voice and body designed towards the embodiment of trust and compassion. The curriculum is based on a knowledge of contact improvisation, somatic studies, poetry and the choreographic exploration of an artist and writer whose subject material centers on human connection. The workshop is open to movers and none-movers alike.

    This high five comes with a sheet of whimsy(nest)® stickers!

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    pinky promise

    This pinky promise grants access to a celebratory gathering in Brooklyn with candle rituals, live music and spoken poetry. Date and Location to be announced.

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    a kiss on the cheek

    Natalie will take the love of kiss on the cheek and infuse it into a personal love letter or poem written just for you and mail it!

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    a good ole embrace

    This hug will be delivered in the form of an original 5x7 doodlebirds® watercolor created in your honor!

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    a kiss on the forehead

    This level of donation gifts you one of Natalie's whimsy(nest)® tote bags! It is a forehead kiss made of canvas and enchantment.

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    a shoulder to lean on

    This shoulder will mail you an original dance or portrait print created by Natalie from her photographic portfolio.

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    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    standing under a willow tree

    This level of donation gifts you a Reiki session with Natalie in New York City to be claimed within 8 months of performance or a box set of whimsy(nest)® blank cards to be delivered this fall.

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    star gazing

    This level of donation grants you a personal performance in New York City at a location of your choice (living room, park, backyard, party or shin dig etc) to be redeemed within a year.

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    flying to the moon

    This level of donation grants you two comp tickets to this production of Patient History and two comp tickets to any future performance by Natalie. Plus flying to the moon entails a drink with Natalie for an hour at an establishment of your choice in New York City. She will sit down with you and talk openly about her process or art or how in love she is with seltzer water and the light that reflects in through the window.

    There is no finite redemption period for this date as Natalie would genuinely like to sit down with you and thank you for your outstanding contribution.

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Funding period

- (28 days)