Antoine Hunter's blessing to Share!

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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Flowing breath of a Black Man in tears!

Hey everyone,
I decided to bring you with me or share the experience with you all. I'm excited and getting ready for a show working with Joanna Haigood of Zaccho dance theatre. 

Zaccho Dance Theatre (ZDT) creates and presents performance work that investigates dance as it relates to place. Artistic Director Joanna Haigood's creative work focuses on making dances that use natural, architectural and cultural environments as points of departure for movement exploration and narrative. Haigood's innovative work involves in-depth research into the history and the character of sites, often involving local communities in the creative process, and typically integrates aerial flight and suspension as ways of expanding performers' spatial and dynamic range. In addition, Zaccho provides performances in San Francisco, nationally and internationally as well as an arts education program for the local community.  

Artistic Director Joanna Haigood relocated to San Francisco from New York in 1979 and co-founded Zaccho Dance Theatre in 1980. Zaccho is one of a handful of dance companies in this country focused on site-specific dance. Joanna Haigood's work has been commissioned by leading arts presenters both nationally and internationally. Among them are the National Black Arts Festival, Festival d'Avignon and Festival d'Arles in France, the Exploratorium, Capp Street Project, Dancing in the Streets, the Walker Art Center, Jacob's Pillow, the San Francisco Art Commission, Kaatsbaan International Dance Center, and the McColl Center for Visual Art. Her choreography has also been commissioned by Alonzo King's Lines Contemporary Ballet, Robert Moses' Kin and Axis Dance Company and is in the repertory of the Joffrey Ballet of Chicago.

Pretty cool huh!??? I love working with her. 

I've done a few work such as "Sail Way!", "negro baseball league", "Dying while black and brown". 

I will be focusing on two shows events with Zaccho dance theater. One will be for Black Choreographer Festival (Feb) and  Zaccho Dance theatre (April). 

The dance will be focusing on "Dying while black and brown". 

Joanna Haigood created a new work inspired by the Equal Justice Society's campaign to restore 14th Amendment protections for victims of discrimination including those on death row. (African American Men on Death row!)

I guess you can see why I want to bring you on this journey with me. Not only this dance had challenge me physically but also mentally and spiritually. Joanna had me in a place where I had to continually questions myself "who am I" in advance level!  

Day 1...(2.10.2014)

I performed this before at UCSF with the same crew/cast. Matthew Wickett, Rashad Pridgen, Travis Rowland. These brothers are one of Bay Area finest dances artist! We're back! I love these, we push each to next level of dance!

Unlike before we had time to develop ...  Who are we, movement, language. Research real life prison, prison guard, gas chair, fight, smell, sounds and everything that come with or down to Death Row. Physical dance, climb, muscle train, team trust , self trust, cues, jumps, rolls and much more to develope for the dance. 

Sometime to be professional it mean get the job done in short amount of time and make it work.

Warmed up, went over ours parts, went over lines. Let go from the top! On top of 8 feet house shaped pole props. Pole house grams! No rope for net for safety. Honestly thanks God they have 2 inches mat! 

We sit be who we are..(Start)..Guys started yelling. I wonder what they are saying but response as they are angry lost prisoner! " hey hey hey, come here, kiss it up! Come come come here! Sucker, hey Hey bob!! Whhaaaaaaaaaa!" Banging on the poles made house frame! It's shake, we jumps ! We rolls. We yelled. We fight. 

20 mins had passed!

I climbing up! They pulled me! Oh no! It's time! What going on, come on I know what's going on!

I'm Charles Rector #721. 

There I saw it, in the room BEHILD the glasses walls. I saw my real life baby sisters and I saw those family watching me. I said my lines , my final statement ..


Wait did she say flowing or rowing?? Both is not the same thing but yet fit for the same thing! What do you expect.. I'm Deaf, I have hard time knowing what said but I'm a good guesser. Assuming she said flowing.. Flowing is what I'll do!  Flow like water! It a good thing my birth sign is a water sign. Don't that sound like Mr. Bruce Lee in a way. Ms Haigood remind me of Me Bruce lee's quote. 
"You must be shapeless, formless, like water. When you pour water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you pour water in a bottle, it becomes the bottle. When you pour water in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Water can drip and it can crash. Become like water my friend."
( Standing Down Stage Center-Solo)
I saw my child , I saw my little girl, I saw the day she was born, how the mother was in tears.. The tears that I could never forget! "Flow with the baby" I told her and she smile with full trust and ok! As I pray flow with our gifts, to flow with love , flow with our miracle, flow with God! 

I stood there on stage allowing the breaths of memories to flow in me. Letting it, the breath take shape to my body without forcing anything.. Such feeling began to pull me deeper into my spirit, the breath goes louder, longer, faster, as it fight to continue to breathe. I began to shake! I'm getting tired! Unstoppable shake, I look up I saw that I didn't not want to stop breathing for my little girl !

I felt all black men standing in the room watching me as their own life is watch through me. Some were tall, strong , old young, gay & str8, skinny , bald, and one said to me " I was only 22, I and my girlfriend made love for the very 1st time and it was in the basement..her uncle and father caught us. Force her to say she was raped. That's I rape a white girl! I was 36 when I die. The only thing kept me going was that I heard I had little girl. Never saw her. Share my story too! Brother!" 

He touched my shoulder! I was breathing then went black I felt such pain in my stomach! I said to that spirit tearfully ", I'm trying, for all of you...thank you.." He let go of me. 

Then I saw Ms Joanna Haigood, in my face rubbing my shoulder asking if I was ok.. " Yeah, what happen is my thought" .. I would say something but I was still crying not only that I was on my knee on the mat! (How did I get there?) dang ! I know what happen.. Wow, the show must go on. My part was done. I was dead. The other 3 dancers continue their story. 
(Dance over)
Me: I'm crying like a bi$&h..
Travis: no, you're crying like a human being!

(Rehearsal over.)

Long day of teaching and lead meeting plus more. Finally in bed. I pray. "...thank you for protecting me and my family from seen and unseen things.. Thank you for the wonderful blessing flowing in my life... Please continue those blessing as I continue to praise you. Bless those spirits that came to me today for their tears flow with my....".(private conversation with God)..."Good night and amen." 

May the Spirit of Dance flowing into you!
Antoine hunter 
Feb 27, 2014
(Psalm 46:1) 
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