In March 2009, Kythe Heller and Meghan McNealy performed 16 Improvised Community Rituals in the four quadrants of Portland, Oregon over the course of 4 days. Here is an experimental edit of the first ritual, performed in a parking lot at 6:00am, the ritual of the Earth's Vertigo. The performers tie blindfolds [skin] to their eyes and mouths, unseeing and unspeaking the world in which they find themselves in order to create a new world in silence.
Over the course of the 4 days, and 16 rituals, a shared dream was created and inhabited by all people who participated [friends, strangers, neighbors, passersby]. All memories and ideas were welcomed into the rituals, using a strong improvisational method of acceptance. In this way, a profound intimacy was created among strangers. We mapped locations in the city of Portland, and would arrive without knowing what to expect, only that we remembered we needed to be there, needed to perform, needed to share a dream. As the days went on, the story connecting all of the rituals and experiences, the dream, formed out of the voices and minds of the public, and clear themes were developed, particularly those around welcomeness and unwelcomeness both in the body and in that body within the society.
The video camera is the dreamer, and sees the dream. We are vessels, conduits for the dance of energies who are present. This clip is a demo from a larger film, currently in the editing stages, which will accompany the forthcoming book, "The Sacrifice of Language: A Rite of Spring", a poetic performance text, to continue the process of creating these improvised rituals, and tells the story of the sacrifice of a language which binds us to a reality which we have not created.
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