April 1, 2013

"Dance of A Thousand Water Dreams" at Northern Spark, June 8-9

“Dance of A Thousand Water Dreams” is presented by Ananya Dance Theatre as part of Northern Spark 2013, produced by Northern Lights.mn. 

Photo: V. Paul Virtucio

Photo: V. Paul Virtucio

“Dance of A Thousand Water Dreams,” a three-part processional performance inspired by the imagination of water in indigenous cosmologies, will begin with a water purification ritual at Lambert’s Landing conducted by women leaders from the Native communities. It then moves into a processional dance in which all are invited to participate. The dancing procession, accompanied by musicians from the Cherry Spoon Collective and poetry by Mankwe Ndosi, and led by lanterns designed by Annie Katsura Rollins, will travel up Sibley Street and complete the water ceremony on the Union Depot Plaza. A version of this processional dance will recur at midnight, this time with candles. It also will recur before dawn, with dancers and audience traveling back to the Lambert’s Landing where we mark a new beginning in our relationship with the Mississippi River.

Photo: V. Paul Virtucio

Photo: V. Paul Virtucio

The Schedule:

7pm: Alfresco processional performance begins at Lambert’s Landing, on the Mississippi River near Warner Road & Jackson Street. The public is welcome to participate.

7:15pm: Water is raised from the River in meditative silence. The voices of Cherry Spoon Collective musicians and poet Mankwe Ndosi soar across the sky to end the meditation and begin the first dance, “Awakening.”

7:30pm: Water ritual, conducted by Native activist Sharon Day.

7:40pm: Lanterns lead “River Ancestries,” a processional dance, from Lambert’s Landing up Sibley Street to Union Depot plaza.

8:20pm: Procession dance ends with flame lighting.

11:40pm: Dancers, musicians, and audience gather at the  plaza water sculpture to light lanterns and candles for “Water Bodies,” a danced struggle between the Zuni god, Swallower of Clouds, and the water goddesses Oshun, Ganga, Chalchiuhtlicue, and Mazu. A midnight procession through Union Depot’s waiting room concludes at 12:45am.

Throughout the night, the public may place written memories and wishes for water at the plaza sculpture.

4:20am-5:20am: Sound artists summon all to rise and dance on the plaza in “Shifting Course” as Swallower of Clouds is vanquished by the goddesses who then lead a triumphant dance down Sibley Street to Lambert’s Landing and closing ceremony led by Sharon Day.

We invite you to participate with us in the four movement segments: “Awakening,” “River Ancestries,” “Water Bodies,” and “Shifting Course.” To help you do that, we have posted a 7-1/2 minute instructional video online that you can practice in the privacy of your home. Or – join us at the Union Depot from 6pm to 8pm on either Wednesday, June 5, or Friday, June 7, and we will help you learn the moves in person.

Of Related Interest: 

St. Paul’s Union Depot has been rebult and remodeled many times • by John Diers • MinnPost.com • April 2, 2013