Can you tell I’ve been Rumi-fied lately?


Conceal—cover, cover up, screen, obscure, mask, hide

Reveal—make known, disclose, divulge, expose, make public, let slip, tell

These are synonyms I found for the verbs conceal and reveal. The ones in orange, to me, seem like words that carry negative connotations in our society for one reason or another.  But it’s interesting to me that the synonyms in orange are negative only as reflections upon the doer of the action, not as a moral statement on the action as it stands alone.

Now I’m thinking, generally speaking, reveal=good; conceal=bad.  But for exploration’s sake…

We’ve all heard “The truth shall set you free.”  Have you ever experienced a time when it hasn’t?

Free from what?

It’s true that when I’ve had a secret, the burden is sometimes more than my fleshly humanity can endure.  Is that just a weakness?  In which case, is revealing something just an avoidance of struggle? Or is that part of an inevitable gravitational pull?  Rumi writes, “The secret moves toward/the knower of secrets.”

Love has nothing to do with journeys

Through time and space

Love wants only to be drawn

toward the Friend.

After that, secrets

may be told.

A secret moves toward

The knower of secrets.  -Rumi

Is there an inevitable gravitational pull from the unknown into the known?

What am I getting at…is concealing something pointless?

I’m interested in the types of things that people want to conceal, and the types of things that people conceal without intent.  Thoughts?

Let’s dialogue


I was reminded of the importance of context yesterday—dance needs context.  Okay, I hear those post-modern groans out there, but could it be, if intended, that no context can be context?  Anyway, that’s not where I’m going with this.  I could go into how I chose to name my company, but I’ll just start here.  The idea of framing dance, as in how it’s framed, not just what frames it, is why a blog has been in the Frame Dance vision since Day 1.  I think of the framers of the Constitution.  I’m here to experiment with how social media can engage others to be framers of art, framers of Frame.  Ready to take a risk?

The concept of a secret is intriguing me.  At what point do words and/or actions become a secret?  Is there a desire to conceal?  Next my mind goes to the actions of hiding, concealing and then revealing; we have great power as human beings to conceal ourselves and also, and equally as powerful, to reveal ourselves.  I feel these concepts can be visualized most easily with shadows.  A shadow can completely, moderately or slightly alter an image.  And it can be temporary, for the image itself exists regardless of the light on it, regardless of the shadow.  But the shadow alters our perception of it.  So why, as humans, do we conceal truth—instinctively or deliberately?

-Maybe a drive to maintain its purity of existence?



To protect its sanctity, sacredness, holiness?


To protect others or oneself?

And what happens if it loses its secrecy? Who is hurt, if any?  Does it boil down to deception or omission or love?

When is it worth protecting a secret?  When is it not?

Because for some “listeners,” a secret isn’t a secret if they are unaffected. Does the party that is intended to be uninformed hold the power of the identity of the secret?

Water, stories, the body,

All the things we do, are mediums

We hide and show what’s hidden

Study them,

And enjoy this being washed

With a secret we sometimes know,

And then not.  -RUMI

Is the Unknown a secret? Knowledge we have not yet acquired… lessons, truths, the future… are these secrets?  Are they truths just concealed, or do they even exist before experienced?

I wouldn’t just love your feedback; I need it, dear Reader.  This is truly the beginning of my process, the initial musings and wonderings I’m trying to untangle and explore–concealing and revealing.  I am so curious to find out how Web 2.0 social media networking can shape the artistic process—throughout the process.  I, too, get bogged down when too many questions are asked, but I urge you—do any of these ideas trigger your thoughts?

The Journey and the arrival


I can’t count on one hand the number of times I’ve traveled from Houston to Lexington, Virginia.  I can probably count on two.  And I have to say that this was the smoothest trip I’ve had.   Thank you, Delta.  I have only two complaints:

  1. On the first leg—from IAH (Bush Int’l in Houston) to ATL– I sat next to a man with a major flatulent problem.  I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt…it was a crowded plane, air pressure changes while in flight, I have an unusually canny sense of smell.  But then again, it’s majorly offensive behavior in such contained close quarters.  It wafts, it ebbs and flows and I find my facial muscles all tied up and scrunched at the nostrils.  Here I am reading Rumi’s poems on the theme of work “One-Handed Basket Weaving” and I’m distracted by this? I feel slightly guilty for reacting so juvenilely and look over with friendly eyes only to find him ASLEEP.  Please, sir, if you’re going to be releasing such odious odors, don’t pretend to be sleeping in attempt to deflect accusations.  FESS UP.
  2. The plane from Atlanta to Roanoke was small, far too small for my taste.  But we’ll get into my fear of flying some other time.  It took me a moment to find my seat because the labels weren’t lined up with the seats.  (Why, people?)  Anyway, I find my seat number and walk up to climb across my row-mate.  As I finagle my belongings over his head and step over his knees—in a dress, mind you.  I see the man sitting behind my seat.  A real outdoorsy type.  Camo pants, big work boots, a moderately soiled t-shirt and a hat.  No, I didn’t forget about how obnoxious my row-mate was to not stand up to let me in, but that isn’t my second complaint of the trip.  It is this:  about halfway through the trip, I start to smell something else.  Yes, that’s right, slightly sweet…hot…sweaty…dirty…incubated… and I crane my head to the left looking through the seats.  There it was.  His boot.  And there it was.  His foot.  Enough said.  This was a pungent trip.

I arrive in Lexington and am immediately thankful for the warm weather.  Call me crazy, but I enjoy Houston summers.  So I was glad to see the weather at a perfect 80.  I thought I remembered how beautiful the Blue Ridge Mountains were.  I was wrong…they and the rest of the hills and trees and flowers are so much more beautiful than I even remembered.

Beauty surrounds us,

But usually we need to be walking

In a garden to know it.

After I arrived at the Dancers House (the most beautiful, calming, creative space I could imagine) I walk to Halestone to watch some of the dancers rehearse.  Walking to the studio, I was reminded of that Rumi stanza above.  The act of walking—it’s like participating in the beauty.  There’s a deepening of beauty when we can experience it as opposed to seeing or hearing about it at a distance.  Walking in Lexington is like that…recognizing and feeling the beauty of the area and the people and the town.  And then comes an active pulse or current of energy.  Not the energy I experience through walking in New York.  That energy is like a suger-high to me—a fast peak and then total exhaustion.  But here it’s steady, as if it’s been brewing for hundreds of years.  And it has.  Where history dwells, energy dwells.  While I was watching Nancy conduct rehearsal, I had the pleasure of hearing her talk about the concept of the show this weekend.  It’s entitled “Older than the Mountains.”  She talked about energy—potential energy and kinetic energy, and reveled in the notion that energy is neither created nor destroyed.  The energy that was active (or potentially inactive but existent) hundreds and thousands of years ago is still active (or inactive and existent) right here in our time and space.  And that energy is creativity.  I am not doing this concept justice…more to come when I’ve seen the show in its entirety.

the main road to the Dancer House
walking up to the house

the back deck of the Dancer House--I anticipate spending a lot of time here

I feel very inspired by my surroundings. I cringe at how cliché that sounds.  But it honestly expresses the sentiment I am feeling.  I look out the window in the living room and see trees.  I look out the window in the bedroom and see trees.  I look out the window above the kitchen sink and see trees.  I look out the window in the kitchen, over the lovely deck and see mountains.  I’ve desperately craved natural beauty.  Maybe that’s why I need to create beauty, or at least something honestly interesting.  I am a believer in changing one’s surrounding to make new art.  I’ll breathe this in, dream this in, walk this in, and create something new.  Ready.  Set.  Go.

What am I doing here?


To be specific…

First, I am dancing in Halestone’s show called “Older than the Mountains” on Saturday and Sunday at the Lenfest Center for the Arts at Washington & Lee University.  I have two half-pieces prepared for the show.  They will either be combined into one or performed individually at different times during the show, up to the discretion of Director Nancy Saylor.  They function as a type of segue, and the mood is reflective, grateful, modestly sacred.  They aren’t earth shatteringly dramatic and aren’t supposed to be.  More like a cleansing of the palate.

Older than the Mountains

Second, I am preparing work for the upcoming season of Frame Dance Productions.  The two main events on the schedule for now are…drum roll please…

1. An exhibit at the Contemporary Arts Museum of Houston on September 17.  This will be part of a Dance and Camera exhibition.  So think video, live dance, museum space…


2. Frame will be in residence at the Hope Center for the HopeWerks Residency from January through March closing with a evening-length work on a tbd date in March.  This will be a live show and will, of course, integrate technology in some fantastic and snappy manner.  Dreaming up some new collaborations as well… any collaborators out there, contact me (, I’d love to discuss working together.  By collaborator I mean, are you, or do you know a:  writer, painter, filmmaker, musician, poet, chef, sculptor, animator, carpenter, architect, costume designer, glass blower, gardener, basket weaver, jewelry maker, martial artist…I want you all at one point or another…

Third, I will be teaching, presenting, and workshopping material on the dancers in Lexington as a sort of feedback system for the creation of this work which, at this stage, is Lydia in the studio, or Lydia reading, or Lydia walking…you get the idea, it’s a solo process, and I promise I won’t get into the habit of referring to myself in the third person.  We’re not sure exactly how this will play out, but it will surely begin to take shape as I feel out the situation and dynamics and find myself in the process (no, I’m not using the “royal we” either, I’m referring to the magical Nancy Saylor, Director of the Community Dance Connection Theater and Halestone Dance Studio.

So there you have it!  Advice gladly accepted, encouragement kindly requested. Bon voyage to you as you take this journey with me.

less than 24 hours


I didn’t anticipate much anxiety before this residency.  But lately I’ve become more and more aware of how much sound is around me.  And not necessarily the good kind.  The cluttering kind.  But I think a whole lotta good sound can become bad in that cluttering-can’t find any awareness of my thoughts-kind of way.  I’d have to admit that I am anxious to be alone with my thoughts and sink into my process.  Sometimes it’s hard for me to live in that state of temporary isolation.  But like any artist does, I do crave that time to make a priority out of creating.  And it’s a luxury, right?  *the guilt sets in for taking this time…and I fight back*  Yesterday I spent most of the day as a warm-up.  I made coffee, journaled, read some Mary Oliver, found music that made my sensibilities dance…it feels like it’s been so long (or maybe I’ve just come really far) from being in that place.  I could feel my own resistance from myself.  But I need this…and I want this…right?

To come…upon arrival in Virginia (and dependent on internet)  I will announce and explain the next two major projects coming up for Frame.  I am so excited.  Can’t quite sit still.

From "Crease," watch it now at

copyright (c) 2010 lorie garcia studio 4d4, all rights reserved

Still in love with Mary Oliver


Often, she is where I start when creating.  These are the words I am thinking upon getting ready for my time in Virginia.  My mind must be quiet to be again busy.

The Summer Day by Mary Oliver

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean–
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down–
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?

Rockbridge Artist Exchange


T minus ten days until I leave for Lexington, VA to begin my three weeks creating work, performing and teaching through the Rockbridge Artist Exchange.

I will use this blog track and discuss my process of developing material for the next year for Frame Dance.  We have some exciting things on the horizon–but I am not at liberty to discuss them just yet…so hang tight.  I am anxious to divulge and will do so as soon as I can.

In 2008 I was was Visiting Artist at Halestone Dance Studio, teaching, performing and choreographing for the students and the Community Dance Connection Theatre.  I returned later that year to perform in the 30th anniversary of Halestone at Lime Kiln Theater.

For those of you who say, “Lexington…Kentucky?”  No.  Lexington, Virginia.  Ever heard of Natural Bridge?

Or Washington&Lee University?  or Union General David Hunter who led a raid on Virginia Military Institute during the Civil War?  Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson are buried in Lexington.  It is also the site of Stonewall Jackson’s only house.   It’s rooted in history and one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been.  I invite you on my journey…