I spoke with now-Baltimore-based dancemaker Liz Lerman about long walks, high art and everyday art, creativity in the Jewish community and her latest book, Hiking the Horizontal: Fieldnotes from a Choreographer. My article appears in this week's Washington Jewish Week.
Choreographer, dancer and public intellectual Liz Lerman relishes long walks. "I have some of my best conversations walking with people, and I have these long-term walking buddies," she said last week, speaking from Cambridge, Mass., where she is an artist-in-residence at Harvard University this semester. "In fact, I find when walking I get a lot of my own ideas."
It doesn't come as a stretch that in her latest book, Hiking the Horizontal: Field Notes from a Choreographer (Wesleyan 2011), Lerman takes a meandering figurative walk through ideas, questions, discoveries and conversations she's had over her 35-year career as a dance maker and founding artistic director of the multigenerational Dance Exchange based in Takoma Park.
I also had a great chat with David Dorfman about his homage-cum-dance-party "Prophets of Funk" for The Washington Post Weekend section, which comes to Rockville, Md.'s American Dance Institute Saturday and Sunday.
Choreographer David Dorfman's newest work, "Prophets of Funk," is a celebration of the collective struggles and triumphs of what 1960s and '70s icons Sly and the Family Stone called "everyday people" and, perhaps, everyday prophets. Dorfman sees some parallels to the populist activism of today.
"It's a hard time for prophets," Dorfman says, lamenting the divisiveness of recent years. "With all these protests - Arab spring, Occupy Wall Street - maybe we are all prophets."