Saturday, Aug 12th garden visitors were treated to dance forms of Isadora Duncan, the revolutionary California dancer who rejected the stifling constraints of classical ballet, by Lois Ann Flood and an illustrated talk about the bees as muse by beekeeper/artist KO.
Watching Lois animate the photographic poses most commonly seen of Isadora’s dance was mesmerizing. After the second piece we all noticed Monarch butterflies dancing in the blue sky above her as if called to the dance themselves. In the background, the floral abundance of the garden bobbed in a gentle breeze forming a curtain of color that rolled out to a noisy, car-laden city street. Professional sound amplification provided by Martin Pendergrast was magnitudes better than music on a boom box and totally unexpected, but delightful.
The best part followed as after the performance, Lois invited us to learn a basic set of Isadora dance movements. It was transformative and fun. Duncan’s moves are low impact and highly invigorating as we circled about it was easy to pretend we were Nymphs dancing at the Delphic Oracle.
In a darkened corner of the garden people then came to hear me wax semi-elegant and show slides about bee’s being in history as well as today. For this event I pulled slides that reflected Mediterranean expressions of the Bee to complement the classical inspiration that moved is adore Duncan.
Ashby Community Garden has an ongoing presence of arts and crafts events for children and adults, but many expressed the view that something “magical” had happened, part of something bigger. I am honored to bee of service in this way.