Welcome to Bellasong’s blog. If you are here for the first time, I thank you for your visit. I hope to offer sweet and savory tidbits, both to stir your psychic juices and to share ingredients and recipes from my larder. When I began this blog several years ago, I was not at all sure what sort of relationship I was willing to enter, let alone maintain and nurture. Yet, time and travel have a way of distilling strangeness…. Knowing what I now know, I wield this tool as a communique across realms, even as I learn how to use the tool, how to master it, be one with it. That can be interpreted however you wish. Perhaps over time I will learn to transmit some of what I gained in my years of traveling. For now, I wish to introduce my current ‘project’.

“Before the End: A Post-Apocalyptic Dance Opera”

The story came to me a few years after the World Trade Towers in New York City were attacked, we (Americans) had started down the path of “what do we do when the tower falls?” I found myself inhabiting a deep future, so deep that it resembled many pasts. In this time space I walked upon the earth alone, seeking companionship, gathering remnants of myriad civilizations, seeking clues. In the studio I followed impulses that came from my marrow, and found myself replicating ancient gestures of war, ritual, manual labor, celebration, confusion and primal desire. In my journal I recorded songs, pujas and myths, while researching their contemporary counterparts.

As with many intimate relationships, I feel that I have only scratched the surface of this piece. It has been performed and reworked several times. Next month I will present a version in a festival of one-person shows. SOLOFEST 2011 is hosted by The Filling Station, a garage-turned-theatre in Albuquerque, NM. http://www.fillingstationabq.com/

When I composed my application for the festival producers, I found myself writing, ” This piece resonates for me as a kind of love letter to the world.” I wasn’t at all sure what I meant by that. So, I see this blog as an opportunity to discover how to make something with this tool (the WWW) I often take for granted.

That being said, today I’d like to share with you some back story about the title. “Before the End”, or “Before Completion” is the common translation of the 64th and last hexagram in the IChing, Book of Changes. For those of you who I’ve not met, I’d like to say that the work I  eventually present to the public grows out of my bush-wacking through dark and murky, esoteric and/or otherworldly realms. Again, you can interpret this however you wish. Basically, the last hexagram describes a time when there is preparation needed to shift from chaos to order. Energies are poised to affect this important and natural progression. However, as with all movements of sentient beings, our actions may or may not aid to attain the goal. I’d like to invite you to do a little  web research, and read a few lovely interpretations of the hexagram. One of my favorites comes from a site called, The Abysmal. Check in out:   http://theabysmal.wordpress.com/2006/10/27/i-ching-hexagram-64/.  You can google- “IChing Hexagram 64”.

I love to read many people’s interpretations of fables, myths and the IChing. It is fascinating to see which images and qualities of ancient stories resonate with different people Also, it helps me to chew and taste qualities of realities that we currently agree to  believe.

The character in “Before the End” may well be the last human. Although she lived with a small tribe of people as a child, she has solely inhabited a barren and fetid earth for many years. I won’t go into detail about the plot today, except to say that her journey and destiny is to find peace and order in the chaos that is her inheritance. She must discover this proposition. Then, she must accept it and prepare for a new cycle in the eternal dance of death and rebirth.

Shall I say more or shall I patiently allow our relationship to develop with heartfelt gestures of friendship and communication? After over 30 years working in the performing arts, I cannot say that I fully understand the nature of my relationship to the audience or my milieu. Ironically, the inciting incident which sparked my desire for intimacy and commitment in this primary relationship was my response to our shared national ‘tragedy’, to enter a mythical future and discover what is important when what we all held so dear was long ago destroyed.

Thanks for checking in. I have lots to do to build this version for the festival, as it is less than 3 weeks away. I cannot promise that I will write many posts before opening. Yet, if it comes to pass that many of you read this and add comments or questions, I will do my best to respond. It is my intention to create an ongoing alliance, sharing ideas and process, toward the aim of enriching the theatrical experience of shared time and space, via this vehicle of instant messaging.

Ciao,

Karen

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