Got an event? Grab your friends, some archetypal and silly costumes, and do some mumming!
WHAT IS MUMMING?
Mumming arises out of the same tradition as sword dances, and ethnohistorians believe they grew out of ancient agrarian societies, with a ritualized sacrifice to ensure the renewed fertility of the land and the people ….the battle between the old and new year, between winter and spring, between the darkness and the light. In the past 200 hundred years and in modern times, a group of Mummers might perform for members of a household, people on the street, people at an event (especially things like a wedding), or a group of families gathered together in celebration most commonly for/on the Twelfth Day of Christmas.
Greetings, fabulous educators, artists, and community project people! We are in luck this week, as we have a wonderful Guest Blogger, Rebekkah Adams, a writer, educator, and film maker (bio at the end). So, without further ado, here's some whys and hows on using film with youth!
Technology pervades our daily lives from our kitchens to our schools. Working on a video project in the classroom can seem like unwanted stress, but really it is the same as any other undertaking. At the most basic level, the process can be split into three phases: pre-production/development, production, and post-production. Each presents unique challenges both within the student body and with the project itself.
As some of you know, one of the things I do is voice talent for webmercials, video, e-learning, and audiobooks. This week, I have been hired as the voice talent for a real-estate agency, and find myself in a common situation -- the person creating the script is not familiar with writing for this medium. It makes more work (and some frustration) for everyone. So, whether you have a video/photo montage of your arts event, your company's 25th celebration, the trees in your park, the activism in your school...PLEASE check out these tips before creating your script for the narration.
I admit I LOVE melodrama, the true stuff, the new stuff, and the mustachioed tongue-in-cheek stuff. That being said, I weep copious tears, gnash my teeth and rend my garments when folks use 'melodrama' in solely disparaging ways. In truth, melodrama grew from a dance hall, peoples' cheap entertainment (thrills, chills, and crazy love stories!) into a means to forward a progressive a social agenda and large-scale cultural and system reform.
Okay friends, it's the time of your school districts are making plans for next year, Arts Advocacy Day just happened here in the USA, and politicians are planning for fall elections before people check out for the summer.
Therefore, this blog is devoted to fabulous writings and research on the importance of arts education and arts at the heart of common core academic learning.
First off, there is an awesome cyber clearinghouse for arts research, and I highly recommend it if you are a one-stop-shopping kinda person: www.artsedsearch.org
More than 80 per cent of what is communicated is not in the words we use, and what we intend may or may not be what is 'read' by the receivers and peripheral participants. Cadence, eye contact, gestures, body angles and weight placement all have implications, which change depending on the social situation, the cultural background and gender of the giver and receiver, the status of the participants, and so on. As an actor whose specialty is Physical Theatre -- and also as a person with a keen interest in interaction, empowerment, and culture (and a BA in Anthropology), I have given a great deal of my life's attention to these non-verbal cues.
I am just finishing up being directed by the great Marie Sirakos in a performance of the internationally acclaimed children's book, My Father's Dragon, in celebration of the author's 90th birthday. Marie is a playwright and community events organizer whose work includes a piece called Empty Chairs, an art-installation, community-driven work about loss and suicide. Marie is a personal hero of mine, and it is an honor to interview her for this week's blog.
I am having one of those days when I know what I should be doing, but I keep circling around it, nibbling on the edges of the project, but not really diving into what I know I need to do—the core work. I notice that for some reason, I am afraid....afraisd of what? Of success, of failure? I love doing this work, but I am avoding it and dreading it as though it were horribly painful to do, as though I would be risking my very self. Yet the act of 'saving' myself from this 'terrible experience' will actually sabotage my success and bring actual suffering to my life.
I find I must coax myself, not bully nor command myself (that makes it worse) and I think (I HOPE) I am picking away at it enough to tip the scales so that what remains is smaller somehow, less terrifying.
This past weekend, I met a man who is a jouster (sigh!). I had been invited to join a joust-training team years ago, but the commute was too far to make it work, and I had been PINING to do it ever since. I have always loved adventurous, physical things, and I do enjoy both sword fighting for stage and horse-back riding. So of course I want to joust, right? Doesn't matter that I am female, relatively small or just had a mid-forties birthday... oh crap, maybe that last one does matter.