Thank You! Attentiveness & Devotion

—photos of Linda Austin’s a world, a world by Chelsea Petrakis—

December 19, 2017

Dear friend of Performance Works NorthWest || Linda Austin Dance,

For the past three years, I have had the privilege of working with a super smart and inspiring group of artists in the creation of a three-part body of work, Un)Made. A first draft of part three, a world, a world, closed two nights ago! Mutability, responsiveness, and the push/pull between a discrete individuality and a more porous and inclusive sense of self that includes community and collaboration were at the center of our three-year process. For me, these concepts also mark the play of our own agency as we feel our way through a confusing thicket of desires and feelings, analysis and critique, public and private action in the current painful political and social landscape.

Another tension I feel deeply is the push/pull between the urge to say NO to so much that needs opposition and a YES, AND to all that helps us thrive: friendship, community, creativity, for example.

I’m mulling over a recent article in the NY Times suggesting that, in these times, political urgency and resonances accrue even to the so-called “abstract” in dance and performance, and that gathering as a group to “pay attention” to things like the body, each other in witness and action, has political weight.

Aworld-earlypicks-10All these thoughts are circling around the idea that YES is what we do when we are making and witnessing dance, performance, music, theater, art, film. And this YES has value, and deserves our support among all the other things (bread and roses, right?) that also need our attention. And YES, keep making those phone calls, sending those postcards, putting your body in the public sphere to protest!

Thanks for your care for, and participation in the PWNW community in the past, present, and future as you make or watch performance with us, share money, time, or other resources…as you shower us with your attention/attentiveness. ALL these gifts mean so much.

Wishing comfort, resilience, and growth to all of us in 2018. With love,


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