Hitting the States Running

Good morning, fans! (Or, buon pomeriggio, if you’re from that other part of the world. Ha ha.)

It took me an agonizingly long time to write this. The idea of myself as “person with website” is still a little foreign to me, so I spent much too long thinking about what I should write and how to use the space and blah blah blah, when really I was just putting off the inevitable. (The “inevitable” here being making my site more awesome and functional.)

But anyway, let me tell you a little about what I’ve been up to since I’ve been back.

The week I returned, I saw two amazing shows. I’ve never seen two shows in one week before. I recommend it. The shows were The Slutcracker (on Christmas Eve, which is the start of a new holiday tradition!) and Arabian Nights, both of which were amazing. I was so overwhelmingly inspired by them, the Slutcracker in particular, and I decided that I needed to be down there with all of them. In other words, I’m auditioning this year! But that’s not until August. Which is good for me. That way, I can go back to ballet class (which I was going to anyway, but now I have a really good reason to commit) and I have an endgame to focus on for my fitness. But that’s another story

Aside from the shows, I was also lucky enough to spend a ton of time with my family and friends, celebrated New Years with some great news, and went back to rehearsal. I know it’s a little cliche, but it really is such a privilege to have so much work right away. Strictly speaking, it’s only three projects plus all the stuff I’m doing on my own. But three is more than none, and for that I am grateful. With that in mind, I’d like to give you a brief rundown of each project and a short performance schedule will be at the bottom of the entry.

First of all, The Bacchae is coming back! This is a project that we have been working on for just over a year now, and we just can’t let it go. We love it so, so much. Euripides’ The Bacchae is a 2,000 year old Greek tragedy about Theban women who have been “corrupted” by Dionysus, the god of wine, who allow themselves to be swept up in the madness. This show was part of the OBERON New Works Series, which had a workshop performance in March 2013 and a full run in July. It went so well that we’re back! Two nights only. Unless they invite us back again. 😉

The Maenads of The Bacchae
The Maenads mad at the revels. Photo Credit: C.Mcintosh Photo

Next up, HUNTRESS! Formerly known as “the Huntress Women,” we were an integral part of the narrative involved with the theatrical belly dance show ANIMUS: A Shamanic Journey Through Dance and Theatre, led by the fabulous Zehara Nachash. This year, we Huntresses worked so well together that we’re going solo! We have two gigs lined up, one at the end of January and one in April.

Huntress Women at ANIMUS
The Huntress Women at ANIMUS 2013. Photo Credit: Peter Paradise Michaels of RavenWolfe Photography

Next, Rara Avis, produced and directed by the lovely Aria Michaels Paradise. This project is an experiment in theatrical fusion belly dance, and I am so excited to get started. Since we haven’t gotten started yet, the scope of its theatricality isn’t very clear to me, but I know most of the artists involved, so I can assure you that it will be, at the very least, a transcendent experience. I am lucky enough to be part of this project because I was selected by Aria to be an ABRAXAS apprentice dancer for this year, which I am overjoyed about.

Poster for Rara Avis
The poster for Rara Avis. Photo is owned by Aria Michaels Paradise.

And last but not least, I just registered for the 2014 Shimmy Mob. Shimmy Mob is a flashmob belly dance event that uses the funds it raises to support various charities, particularly homeless shelters. I’m merely one of the dancers on the Salem team and rehearsals aren’t scheduled to start for a little while, so I’m not too clear on the details, but I was part of it last year and we had a great time. If you’re interested, sign up and join us! The more, the merrier!

Logo for Shimmy Mob
The official logo for Shimmy Mob

I hope I always have tons of announcements to make! Thanks for reading this far. Hope you come back soon!

A presto,

JW

 

 

Here’s a schedule of all my upcoming performances:

January 16th and 17th, 2014 (8:00/7:30): The Bacchae, Club OBERON, Cambridge, MA. Tickets: $20-$25.

January 26th, 2014 (7:00): HUNTRESS performs at Cafe Raqs. The Armory, Somerville, MA. Tickets: $5 donation.

April 8th, 2014 (7:00): HUNTRESS performs at Belly Dance Underground. The Midway, Jamaica Plain, MA.

April 19th, 2014: Rara Avis at the Vintage Belly Dance event. YMCA Theatre, Cambridge, MA.

May 10th, 2014: Shimmy Mob international performance. Somewhere in Salem, MA. Tickets: Free, if you’re in the right place.

May 10th, 2014: Rara Avis at the Muse: A Theatrical Bellydance Event Gala Show. Cambridge Masonic Temple, Cambridge, MA.