Holding On/Letting Go

Opening night of The Dislocation Express was rough for me. I thought that the show went well for the most part, we pulled off some complex logistics, and the performers were really strong. The rough part was my internal journey.

Sometimes we learn to let go by meditating, by setting intentions in that direction, by creating the proper conditions, by accessing some inner wisdom, etc. And sometimes we learn to let go by getting completely exhausted from trying to hold on so tightly. That was my story this time.

Interestingly enough, I found that during Act I my left hand couldn’t sustain the strength to make the chord fingerings on my mandolin. It’s a long musical piece, and I usually get tired doing it. But I always make it through. This time, no matter how much I tried, I couldn’t hold my fingers down where I wanted them. I leaned this way and that, I moved my thumb into any position that might offer some leverage. But the strength wasn’t there. Maybe I should have taken that as a sign, as I ended up spending a lot of the rest of the evening grasping at how I thought everything “should” be.

being a director vs. being a performer
doing experimental work vs. wanting certain results
trusting the process vs. wanting people to have a certain experience

rather than taking the ride that was actually being offered.

perfectionism. Learning to forgive myself. letting things be messy. Letting go of my ideas about how the piece will register on the outside. More important for the spirit to be there.

I tend to lose balance when I have two many tasks on my plate. I need time to center, to feel the piece, to feel my connection to it, to connect with others. Sometimes that means delegating more tasks. Sometimes that means asking for people to help me connect…to help me ground. Playing music before and/or after a show really helps….

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