Monday, March 24, 2014

Floating and Storytelling

On Saturday we had the final session of the Theatrical Interpreting Preparation Series (TIPS) Part I workshop I've been leading since December. This was a great session and the participants were great to work with. It was a very diverse group, in terms of experience in both theater and sign language, which led to some great discussions. I will miss our twice a month Saturday meetings and sharing four interpreted performances in five months with them. Thank you, all of you!

Saturday and Sunday I also interpreted/participated in "Sign Mudras," which the creator Jayanthi Raman calls "experimental dance theater using contemporary Indian dance and American Sign Language for storytelling." In this production I interpreted, and I crossed over that barrier (as Jayanthi intended!) to do storytelling in one piece which was entirely traditional Indian dance, with no spoken language. The first dance piece, there was a narrator reading different parts of the story between sections, which I interpreted. And the final piece, the narrator gave an overview of what was to happen in the dance, which I interpreted, and then I stood back and did not sign during that final fifteen minutes. We did have some signing audience members in attendance at both performances.

Saturday night after I arrived home from the performance, my partner and I went for floats at FloatOn. I was in the new ocean tank with the optional star system overhead. I turned off the tank light immediately - but I left the stars on for a couple of minutes, then those went away and I was in that relaxing, soothing, noise reducing darkness. My mind was still humming with thoughts and I let them bounce around for awhile; didn't try to force them to stop this time, just let them be. And they did finally quiet down. For a bit. Somewhere in those 90 minutes, I started getting some clarity for my writing. For two particular projects. One of them was the M-book and, while that's the one I don't remember as well, I know there was something there. The other project is a new one I'm not talking about yet. It is started and it has many parts. And I had a great idea for a new part, which I immediately started after we got in the car - even before driving home. I didn't want to lose that spark, so I wrote what I remembered with enough details to keep the thread going. I've continued that piece a little, though there is much more to do.

This is the second time I've experienced a writing inspiration from floating. Maybe there was a third time I don't remember right now. But this one seemed extra good because I wasn't even watching for it. The other one I remember, I was specifically hoping for some insight related to writing and I tried to steer my thoughts in that direction. But on Saturday, I let my thoughts wander. And there it was.

Good news!