Thursday, August 7, 2008


Whenever I go through something difficult, my first instinct is to withdraw, cover up, protect.  It is not to expose the rawness.  The emotion.  The reality or gravity of the situation.  

It is not natural to take oneself, exhausted and vulnerable,  and show it to the world.  It is dangerous.  And unforgiving.  

But it is also courageous.  

I love art for all of those reasons.  An artist must force themselves to be real.  Whether your art is dancing, singing, writing, acting, sewing, directing, parenting or painting.  You can spot those who try to gloss over the depth of struggle or pain by trying to hit only the high notes.   There is something affected, something fake, something missing.

Everyone's life includes a time of struggle.  Of deep and profound pain and loss and angst and fear.  Just as everyone's life includes elation, strength, depth and hope.  For me, to be believable, art must have a sense of both.

I watched the So You Think You Can Dance finale last night.  And I must admit to feeling incredibly LAME telling you guys that I cried over a reality show.   But I did.  

I don't know anything about dance.  But I know what gives me chills.  I know what brings tears to my eyes.  I know what makes my throat close tight trying to keep my heart from jumping out of my mouth.   I know what makes me hold my breath.

And I've got to say the dancers left their bodies last night and danced from a depth that can only come from being stripped down to nothing.  The nothing that shows what a GIFT art is when created from that point of view.  That moment of sheer nakedness, where every instinct is telling you to conceal yourself and yet you move forward anyway. 

One of the dancers said he's rather be on the dance floor dying and taking his last breath than at home living and doing nothing.

Passion and drive exist at the core.  To live courageously sometimes means removing the layers that keep you hidden, no matter how uncomfortable.  So you can finally move forward. Unencumbered and free.

These two dancers?  Killed me ALL season long with their courage.  

To see their first dance click here.  
And their last click here.

I  will be huddled under my covers using up the last of my tissues if anyone needs me ... and yes, I recognize the irony.

2 comments: said...

Wow! I have never even seen the show. I don't ever watch any reality shows at all and now, after seeing that, you've got me rethinking my, er, position.

Anonymous said...


Those moments we live, that have no words to explain them, have been made visual. I know the feeling in that dance, and so do you SSG.


I need a hug, a puppy, a kitty and my husband, well okay, and a box of tissues (just don't tell anyone). It is hard to read what I type through hard contacts when I am teary eyed......damn it!