Thursday, May 14, 2009

communal music

-Being invited by my friend Helen from my contemporary dance class to be a part of the dance group for a carnival in Belfast this June. I came, a bit nervous about what to expect, and found a massive warehouse full of about 20 drummers, drumming in unison and also having their own components to the tribal-sounding music. Sometimes the leader would hold his drumsticks in the air and pump them to the deep bass beats in perfect harmony, making it look like he was making the sound just into the open air. There was a carpet on the floor for Helen and I to dance (others will be coming next week). All of my fear left as I couldn't help but move to the beat of the drums, feeding off the energy in the place. We did a lot of samba-like moves in a line (so you can move foward in a parade while doing them) and it was really fun. It reminded me a bit of dancing at high school football games with the drumline thumping out a rhythm, but this time it was more free and relaxed.

-Discovering that I know Helen's cousin. This is a very Northern Irish thing--to know people in common--and we realized that we probably met before in my former life in Belfast. She looked at me and said "See, I knew you looked familiar when you first came to dance class!"

-Great banter at Nightreach, where we gave soup and bacon sandwiches to people out late near the church. Everyone was really grateful and friendly, and the conversation varied from studying to faith to (even) Crocodile Dundee. At one point, we were all trying out our best Aussie accents. People may say we're becoming increasingly individualistic as a society, but last night, I witnessed and participated in warm community being formed.

No comments: