Friday, December 14, 2007

Radar Sherpa performs at Ventura grade school

Radar Sherpa performed for Charter School in Ventura on Wednesday the 12th of December. Special thanks to Daniel Ash for providing the sound system and Rita for asking us to play. This performance consisted of Clay (movement artist) and myself on the didjeridoo.

Clay and I arrived and Rita showed us where we could set up. This was an outdoor show and took place on the lawn behind the school after lunch during recess. We decided to conduct the show informally allowing the curiosity of the students to draw them to us.

Several kids queried me about the didge while I arranged my sound system and the array of didjeridoos that I had brought. Clay, in his white t-shirt and black sweat pants, stretched and mentally prepared himself. Then, like a hang glider launching itself off a cliff, I began to play my small 'd' didjeridoo which I made from recycled PVC. Clay instantly began a slow motion martial art informed movement which, combined with the didj, began to concentrate a whirlpool of awareness. Within the first minute, we had 100 children gathered around us, so closely, that Clay was left with just enough room to maneuver.

After 10 minutes or so, the first song had ended and so I spoke a bit about the didjeridoo. I began by thanking the aborigines in Australia for developing and preserving the didjeridoo. Next, I talked about how didges are made. I explained how, traditionally, didges were made from the activity of termites hollowing out eucalyptus branches and painted with natural pigments and that is the way they were made 50,000 years ago.

I began to play again and with my body warmed up, the dreamtime became our reality. Clay spun one of the students around on his shoulders and the vibrations of my didge filled the air. I'd grabbed my seven foot yucca didge which I call Wormhole, for the latest song and was glad I did. It's length lent itself perfectly to the polyphonic resonations and Tibetan Buddhist chanting demonstrations that somehow come from within this body of mine.

Soon, Clay was being mobbed by 25 girls, all of them wanting to be his dance partner. Clay handled his popularity with grace and aplomb, apologizing for not being able to dance with all who wanted. From my vantage point, it appeared as though Clay had become as popular as a young Paul McCartney. I enjoyed the response we had been gifted with and allowed me to power the dreamtime with gratitude, love and joy.

Afterwards, Lisa the pricipal and Rita excitedly thanked both Clay and I. They were amazed at how much their students enjoyed the performance and requested a return performance on Earth Day.
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