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  • Writer's pictureJustin

Take a Walk Around the Pond

Hello again! Today I get to tell you more details about the event hinted at in my last post, which will be my first performance in quite a while. The pandemic, heat waves, injuries and illness have made the last few years difficult, but I'm excited about this upcoming event and I hope you can join or support us!


We're calling it "Pondwalk", and that's what it is at its core, but there's also more to it than that. While a soundwalk is a guided tour through a particular area with the intention of listening to the sounds around you, a performancewalk is what I term an experience that combines a soundwalk with other performances. I had a great time teaming up with some intrepid collaborators back in 2019 for "OLD GROWTH/NEW MONEY/OLD MONEY/NEW GROWTH", a performancewalk that examined the intersection of wealth and trees in residential Portland. Now my collaborator Katherine and I would like to invite you to come to Whitaker Ponds Natural Area and experience the intersection of humans and nature in a new way. Although located in the city, it is on the outskirts of town, and while a trail, boat launch and picnic area provide access for people, the pond itself is reserved for birds, turtles, and other animals only. Whitaker's proximity to heavy industry make it a noisy jungle during the day, but in the evening the voices of the many native and migrating birds come to the fore. It is place of intersections and contrasts.


You will be led on a guided walk along an easy 1/2 mile loop trail around the main pond. Katherine and I will be performing several vignettes in key locations along the way, resulting in a multidimensional experience that is sure to be one of a kind. We have created our sound and movement specifically for the locations of the vignettes around the pond, sometimes basing an entire piece around a single tree. Incidentally, this whole endeavor was inspired by a single tree that I encountered along the path while I was walking around the pond earlier this year. At a recent rehearsal, Katherine and I found that the tree had been cut down. A devastating blow to be sure, but it is fitting that the performance will carry on without it. Our relationship with nature has never been straightforward and our choices shape our environment every single day.

Pondwalk

Friday, August 18 6:30pm

Whitaker Ponds Natural Area

7040 NE 47th Avenue, Portland OR

Admission: suggested $15 donation (pay what you can)


  • We will meet under the large tree in the gravel area adjacent to the parking lot and begin the walk from there.

  • Parking and bike racks are available on site. It is also accessible via TriMet Bus 75.

  • The entire performancewalk should take one hour or less. In order to get the full experience, you will need to arrive by 6:30pm. If you arrive late proceed clockwise around the pond until you find us.

  • We would advise you to wear comfortable shoes. You may wish to apply bug spray as mosquitoes are present around the pond. Dogs are not allowed.


Can't attend the event but still want to support us? You can make a donation via PayPal or Google Pay using my email address (below). All proceeds help us present more engaging performances like this one. You can also help us spread the word by sharing this webpage with people you think will enjoy it. Thank you so much and we hope to see you soon!


-Justin


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