Helping Dances have been happening all over the place now, since 2012. Since 2014, Olimpias collaborators like Sine Rofofsky Marcus have led their own Helping Dances. They are secular rituals, open invitations, impromptu performances, sharing events in dire times.
Publication about the Project: Crip Time, in Tikkun.
Here's the initial invite we put out when we began them. Since then, Helping Dances have morphed and reshaped themselves beautifully, and they keep evolving. If you want one, just ask for it.
'Neil and I love to move. But we can no longer move the way we used to - our bodies are getting older, more painful, less flexible. So we would love to ask for your help. Can you lend us your strength, your ability, your care, your attention?
Every week or so, in public places, parks, street corners, join Neil Marcus, Margit Galanter, Sadie Wilcox, Chia-Yi Seetoo, Petra Kuppers, Lisa Steichmann, Katherine Mancuso, Joy Cosculluela, Mark Romoser, Christian Nagler, Cassie Thornton, Stephen Lichty, John Sullivan, and other friends as we enact interdependence. Together, and in somatic flow, we activate thoughts and emotions about the network of helper economies we are part of, and their relations to issues of class, age, ethnicity, race, disability and sexuality. Experience the joy of helping, respectfully.
Each action will take about 15 minutes. What we will do afterward, how you will translate what transpired, is open. There may be writing, or visual art practice, or more dancing, or resting. Usually, we'll decamp for dinner somewhere afterward, and the dinner will be pay-what-you-can, subsidized for low-income participants.'
Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012 6pm, Willard Park, Berkeley
Thursday May 31st, 5.00, with repeats till 6ish, Church Divinity School of the Pacific Courtyard: 2450 LeConte Ave, Berkeley, CA 94709 (during the registration time of the Pedagogy and Theatre of the Oppressed Conference).
Thursday, June 7th, 6pm, People's Park, Berkeley
Here's the handout, and invitation to respond/participate/become part of this, even from a distance:
We are Neil and Petra. We love each other, and we love to move. But we can no longer move the way we used to - our bodies are getting older, more painful, less flexible. So we would love to ask for your help. Can you lend us your strength, your ability, your care, your attention?
Every week or so, in public places, parks, street corners, join us as we (The Olimpias: A Performance Research Project: www.olimpias.org) enact interdependence. Experience the joy of helping, respectfully.
Here is some space for you. You can answer or express yourself however you like, in poetry, story, doodling, song or movement. You can share your response with us here at the meeting, or else email anything you’d like us to know to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. Many people have a hard time asking for help: we are supposed to be strong, independent and competent, even through few of us can live up to that ideal. What physical act can we do for you right now?
2. Who has helped you a lot?
3. Do you have some thoughts on helping and receiving help that you would like to share?
Helping Dance in Washington, DC, on the National Mall- August 2012
Helping Dance at the University of Hawaii Manoa, April 2013, photo: Mareva Minerbi
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