Dear Mother Moon is one of four works presented by CalArts this year in what has become the Institute’s Edinburgh home, Venue 13.
A delightful visual experience.
This work is inspired by the book, Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Clarissa Pinkola Estés. Her premise is that women possess a wild, natural self, an energy that is positive and creative and that draws upon profound wisdom from across the ages. This inner self is Wild Woman, but often remains subjugated. Liberation is made possible by reconnecting to the roots of life as revealed in the myths and legends of peoples around the world and by penetrating the usually unconscious psyche.
Designer, Juliana Romero and Movement Artist, Sky Spiegel have created this piece in collaboration with the three performers Yunni Lin, Ishika Muchhal and Mady Thornquest. These students bring experience in a wide range of dance forms and performance to create a coherent style of movement that represents their explorations into the abstract concepts of Estés. It is the penetrating howling and freedom of the wolves, combined with the moon’s energy, that forms the backdrop to a journey of self liberation.
A central structure upstage opens out into tent that engenders thoughts of a Native American Indian teepee or a Mongolian yurt. When the cloth is removed and used to bind the dancers together a totemic tree is revealed that suggests growth and energy being drawn up from the earth and maybe even knowledge of good and evil. This and the space around allow the cast to represent their growth and struggles in floor work, contractions, extensions and ultimately in participatory dance accompanied by an enhancing soundscape by Vera Marie Weber.
Dear Mother Moon is a short work at just over twenty minutes that makes its debut here. It’s meaning is probably clearer to the performers than it is to those watching, but it makes for a delightful visual experience.