Fri Dec 16 2011
Did he like it?
Yeah, he loved it. He was laughing. I was actually convinced we would probably see him again when we got back because it was like, we need to say goodbye three times. He's not going anywhere. And then we had that amazing storm and we sort of knew, Okay, if Merce is going to die, it's going to be during a huge thunderstorm. The rain was torrential. And it was Merce. It was very much how I would expect him to leave.
You performed in the Event at Rockefeller Park. What was that experience like, in that circumstance?
It was weird. I just sort of remember feeling the sensation in my chest, like I was more connected to my heart, for some reason, in that moment. It's hard to really describe, but I felt just suddenly aware of that spot. It was so moving, and there were so many people. You could just feel their empathy. It was really special for us, and for what we lost and for what we were going to do.
I've never been outside watching dance where there was so much focus.
It was great. And Robert was great during that time too. I think back, and some of his strongest moments were in that time after Merce died. He really took care of us all. It brought everyone together in a way that we hadn't been. We have grown together in different ways, but that was a unique experience.
Do you all talk about what this experience is like now?
I think we do touch on it from time to time. Actually, we do talk about it a lot. The whole time I felt like, even when I joined, Dylan and I—the whole time we would go out and have a drink and talk about the experience. We talk too much. [ Laughs ]
You and Dylan?
The whole company. But I have to say I think everyone's been really great throughout this whole tour. And we're probably closer than this company's ever been. Even with all this bullshit that pops up here and there. It really feels like a family.
How do you deal with this time, the uncertainty?
It was hard for a little while, but more and more I'm finding that I just want to immerse myself in it as much as I can. I want to be working on everything I have to perform, and when we're taking class—I kind of just decided that as long as I'm here, I'm going to go full speed and take class and explore it in this environment while I can. Work on things by myself when I'm free. And that's how I'm dealing with it. And I think when I leave it I'll feel like I lived in fully.
Does it feel different to perform now?
Yes. I think it still varies from piece to piece, but when I'm more comfortable with something, I feel confident. I just feel like I'm going to do it how Jamie does it, and here it is. I still feel unstable sometimes, but I'm comfortable with that. I think being more comfortable with the imperfections and the failures is part of it, and I feel that way now.
Did Merce allow you to feel like the failures were okay?
Absolutely. When I was working on Sounddance even, he repeated that old Cage thing to me, saying something about, you're doing everything right now, just go a little further and make some mistakes. And he said that again to me when I was learning Sounddance . "Everything's okay. Just go make mistakes." He was okay with imperfections. He liked them. It's scary. You feel clumsy. But that's nature.