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Un-Orthodox - click opera — LiveJournal
February 2010
 
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Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 03:00 pm
Un-Orthodox

Hisae and Kyoka worked so late on their secret art project last night -- and so much Scotch was consumed -- that a pajama party spontaneously developed. The girls changed into floral housecoats; dressed in a long striped nightshirt, I was in charge of the music. Some kind of disco music might have been the obvious choice for a pajama party, which is why I chose the most unorthodox soundtrack possible: Greek Orthodox church music.



Initially it was just an LP of Greek Orthodox hymns ("Ha, let's see them party to this!") chosen at random from the shelf. But soon -- mainly because the amp conked out -- we were projecting videos of Orthodox ceremonies and dressing up in long red robes, with a red cooking pot on our heads, in imitation of the garb onscreen. This proved considerably more fun than throwing silly Kylie shapes, but things really hotted up when YouTube suggested a link to some Ethiopian Orthodox songs and we began copying the ecstatic circle dances and clapping.



Things got positively wild when we switched to Whirling Dervish videos, and began twirling around the room like tops in a trance. Soon our heads were spinning faster than the room, and the rabbit was terrified. Only a fear of vomiting (and showing a little too much leg) stopped us. But what would a pajama party be without vomiting and flashing? That's totally orthodox.

24CommentReply

imomus
imomus
imomus
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 01:38 pm (UTC)

I suppose I could draw three serious conclusions from this silly party:

1. Traditional cultures bring you to the ecstatic more rapidly.

2. Religious ritual delivers a more powerful hedonic release than anything devised by the secular industrial entertainment complex.

3. What do performance artists do to relax? Same thing they call work, and others might call worship.


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mrobot
mrobot
Ben
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 03:06 pm (UTC)

do you know of the work of jerzy grotowski?


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 03:51 pm (UTC)

Grotowski I don't actually know about, though I love his look:



Didn't he influence Joe Orton and Tadeuz Kantor? Must delve further...


ReplyThread Parent
mrobot
mrobot
Ben
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 04:24 pm (UTC)

I think Kantor was more of a contemporary, and I don't know Orton. He was a big influence on Peter Brook though.


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(Anonymous)
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 03:10 pm (UTC)

Lol only you could take something silly and fun like this and find some metaphysical angle. I think you're reading way too much into this, but it sounds like a fun night. Good on ya.


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(Anonymous)
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 07:47 pm (UTC)
How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 10:49 pm (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

That episode is recounted with patrician priggery on Bill Buckley: Mr Right on the BBC iPlayer.


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 04:43 am (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

though technically originating with the Beats of the 50s (and later a hippie, indeed), ginsberg was neither sidelined nor squandered; he was a lucid writer and social/political activist until his final days. out of the major players of the Beats, only Kerouac was fated with an all too short life, the rest of them lived and created well into their old age.


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 09:02 am (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

But weren't they all so busy 'sticking it to the man' that they forgot to create anything worth remembering? What would Ginsberg have done if he HADN'T dropped out?


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 04:14 pm (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

Ginsberg didn't drop out. He published. He taught. He toured. He wrote. That's not dropping out.

He was, I think, a very great poet.


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 08:01 pm (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

Indeed, he was one of the greatest American poets (not to mention influential cultural and transitional figures) of the twentieth century. You're right, the only thing the Beats dropped out of was the square's version of a mainstream life.


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 07:54 pm (UTC)
Re: How many great creatives did the hippy movement sideline and squander?

it seems you're taken with the "square's" version of the Beat/Hippie movement. As Kerouac originally indicated, it was first and foremost always about being "beatific" and fashioning your own peaceful (and as Ginsberg always said, spiritual) art/living movement alternative to the
square, mainstream society.

I'm not sure who you're including in "they," but, as I alluded to before, the majority of the Beats produced interesting works well into their old age; they hardly "forgot" their creativity. Ginsberg in particular has some great poems in Cosmopolitan Greetings, a collection of 1980s and 90s writings; in fact, that poem itself (CG) contains some of his most renown lines. Not only worth remembering, but assured to be. And as I mentioned, he was working and staying politically informed and engaged until his final days.

Ginsberg himself has answered your question about what he would have done had he not "dropped out" as you put it. He would have been a full-time teacher like his poet-father, or (God forbid) may have stayed in the advertising business where he had a short stint during the 1950s, while he was figuring out the structural challenges of "Howl." At any rate, thankfully he chose the life of an artist instead of the life of a full-time square.

Here's another question for the mirror: are you doing anything worth remembering?


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(Anonymous)
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 09:15 pm (UTC)

I went to Egypt a few years ago and watched a Sufi do a 30 minute dervish dance it was amazing. Before the show i saw him and his drummer rehearsing and ended up talking with them and sharing a cigarette. It was really nice.

ps. I like your Joemus album alot Momus!
-Adam (Oliver COBOL)


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(Anonymous)
Sat, Jun. 6th, 2009 10:55 pm (UTC)

Rob el Bom


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 07:17 am (UTC)

Weirdly enough, the pajama party did actually involve me playing Kyoka a Phonepunk video! She liked it!


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 02:57 am (UTC)

"Things got positively wild when we switched to Whirling Dervish videos, and began twirling around the room like tops in a trance. Soon our heads were spinning faster than the room."

If you got dizzy you weren't doing it right. That means you were still disco dancing darling. This is were you must delve further.


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microworlds
microworlds
Sparkachu Maelworth
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 04:49 am (UTC)

You know Momus, I think you would be a terrible DJ. If I was throwing a pajama party or what have you, and you were my DJ, we would all be asleep by the time the first song ended.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 07:20 am (UTC)

IT WAS GR8!


ReplyThread Parent
microworlds
microworlds
Sparkachu Maelworth
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 05:53 pm (UTC)

To you people it was, because you are boring people. BRB getting entertainment at Gawker.


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 05:20 am (UTC)

Reminds me of the Gurdjieff film Meetings with Remarkable Men


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 04:12 pm (UTC)

I watched that not long ago!


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 07:39 am (UTC)

Still adorable after all these years Nick!


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(Anonymous)
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 03:58 pm (UTC)

Can I ask a boring technical question. What do you use to project videos onto your wall? And much space do you need?

Martin.


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imomus
imomus
imomus
Sun, Jun. 7th, 2009 04:11 pm (UTC)

I use a Texas Instruments Viewsonic PJ503D projector, simply because it was the cheapest available projector, about 300 euros. It sits about two metres from the wall and produces an image about one-and-a-half metres by one metre.


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