now is now

Premiere December 17, 2014 Gibney Dance DoublePlus Festival
Curator and Mentor 
Bebe Miller
Created by 
Maree ReMalia in collaboration with the artists and performers
Taylor Knight and Anna Thompson
Sound Design 
Michael J. Morris
Costume Styling 
Michael J. Morris and Maree ReMalia
Lighting Design 
Mandy Ringger
Alex Escalante and Lishay Shechter
Photo credit for in-process showing 
Mario Ashkar Film
Quentin Burley
Videography and Editing Trailer 
David Bernabo

is now 
is a new work exploring the potential of a single moment to comprise countless layers of ambivalent emotions, contradictory thoughts, and conflicting circumstances. Together we examine how our experiences of our world, our lives, and our bodies emerge endlessly from states of irresolvable dissonance. When personal and global conflict become ways of life, how must we inhabit innumerable states of being simply in order to be?

*This work was commissioned by the DoublePlus Series, which embraces the artist-as-curator format to present twelve emerging and under-exposed artists as part of Gibney Dance’s inaugural presenting season at 280 Broadway. The six-week series features cutting-edge performance curated by mentor-choreographers Annie-B Parson, RoseAnne Spradlin, Jon Kinzel, Miguel Gutierrez, Bebe Miller, and Donna Uchizono. Special thank you to Bebe Miller for inviting Abby Zbikowski and me to share a bill December 17-20.

From Maura Donohue’s Culturebot review “Maree ReMalia & Abby Zbikowski (Bebe Miller’s DoublePlus at Gibney)”
“ReMalia’s performers Taylor Knight and Anna Thompson are part of a sound/performance duo called slowdanger. In “now is now” she has them jumping rapidly from moment to moment, expressing a curiosity about the multiplicity inside any single instant. The resulting work is a rapidly shifting series of ideas. The second an idea approaches full definition the dancers bound off to a new one.”

photo by Alex Escalante

Process Materials:

View images from our process on the Maree ReMalia | merrygogo Facebook Page here.

Inkshedding following my recent trip to Israel
i have an app on my phone called red alert, telling me when rockets are fired from gaza
my settings are only for TLV and surrounding cities
i have an other app on my phone linked to haaretz, the liberal news source that also prints in english and sends up to the minute notifications
there were 5 alarms in TLV during my stay in israel
2 in the middle of the night, 2:30a/3:00a, in our cute sublet stairwell
1 during the tech rehearsal for our performance, 19:30, basement of the pasaz nightclub
1 after gaga class, 17:45, squeezed in tiny office in basement of batsheva offices
1 i didn’t even hear
often i could hear/feel booms from rockets fired in the neighboring cities of TLV, sometimes it would shake the apartment
1000s more in the south and center of the country
1000s of deaths in gaza, more that were injured
67 israeli deaths and many injured
some of my friends parents live in the southern parts of israel next to gaza, it’s another story down there
i could not wrap my mind around the energy and will going into the attacks, from either side
this is 1 way to spend a life
my friend told me a story when she visited a friend just outside jerusalem and they went for a walk and could hear combat fire the entire walk
she also said sometimes when she would take the train to teach gaga in cities in the north, sirens would sound and she was supposed to get under the table in the train car
but she went out of the train
everyone i encountered in israel said it was the worst “operation” i.e. war, in their lifetimes
so heavy
so sad
so much fear
so much confusion
so long a time for it to keep going
so helpless in what they could do
some of my friends stopped going to protests bc conservative right wing folks started violently attacking peaceful protesters
propaganda, propaganda, propaganda
who or what can you believe or listen to
this is what these people live within/under all the time
not to mention what the palestinians live within/under all the time
grateful to hear personal stories and experiences and to hear how peoples thoughts and sentiments have evolved through this in-credible circumstance
opinions running a spectrum from being in agreement with the “operation” to being opposed with their explanations, i can understand all their positions
they call it an “operation” b/c it costs the govt less money and they hope will receive less scrutiny from the outside (i don’t think it worked this time)
the guttural sounds in yasmeen godder’s work, climax
the performers wretching, contorting, being moved by other forces, cackling like crazy people or like witches putting spells
a gun made of fingers shoved in someone’s mouth
surrounding and corralling the audience, enclosing, opening, bursting
shifting the boundaries
violent slaps on their own bodies
long sustained looks and silences
shy telling me that if a suspicious person gets on the bus, he gets off
imagining tunnels being created under my home from my worst enemy
imagining the “knock” or warning rocket hitting the roof of my house giving me 10 minutes to evacuate the premises of where i live w/all my belongings
to go where
imagining my neighborhood in ruins
my family wiped out
what would i feel
how would i respond
amidst all of this
i can have the time of my life
connect with people in a way that i can not so easily do in other settings
a lifestyle that feels so organic to me
doing something that moves me deeply and feeds my “soul”
with beautiful people from all over the world
it makes me a better human
a space to question and research and forget and remember all at once
to be so alive in every moment
practicing alertness
eating good food, sharing meals
the sea
biking everywhere
the wind on my skin
stifling, yet enlivening humidity
feeling exhilarated
amazing, unexpected breezes
all night life, life all night
the grooviest music and clubs
people enjoying
in the moment
open air markets
dirty streets
disgusting puddles that make you wonder what could be in there
stray cats of all shapes and sizes
my specific demographic of friends many have interest in spiritual development, peace
rather than going to protests some opted to join singing circles
songs of peace
put good vibes in the world
try to build positive change in their own ways
some questioning what kind of lives they can build in israel
some wanting to raise jewish kids in the state of israel
before leaving, my flight was cancelled twice by the u.s. ban
wondered if i should go
if it was appropriate to go
then i saw this dance performance
talked with dance colleague about the seeming rawness and aliveness exhibited in Israeli contemporary dance that we had experienced and how it is distinguished from other dance we have seen
i knew i had to go
i flew in just after rockets targeted ben gurion airport and left an hour before another was launched, as the next flare up was beginning
after the hamas leader was assassinated with his family
1.5 weeks of relative quiet, then 2 days before i left, again
i got out just in time?
what about everyone else
in response to the rocket announcement toward the airport
my friend said, “maybe you will get to stay longer….”
my other friend said, “go! while you can…..”
a palestinian family next to me on the plane ride home
they visited ramallah for the first time in 7 years
to visit their aging grandparents/parents
in these times
i can only imagine their entrance and exit through security at ben gurion, at check points
if i am strip searched during my exits from the country….
the contradiction of my experience in this place
in relation to the overarching politics
how the overarching politics are everywhere in my experience of this place, these people
in subtle and overt ways
walking the streets of tlv, alone, anytime day or night
i feel more safe than i do in any other city in the world that i have been
sensuality and sexuality everywhere
in tlv anyway
sans the repressed-ness i sense in the u.s.
doesn’t feel dangerous
matter of fact
part of the life
in tlv
people making out on the beach, in the park, on the boulevards
flesh, bikinis—and fully clothed women in the sea, side by side
concealment, modesty, hiding, covering skin and body parts
attempts to keep temptation at bay
threatening games of matkot (like hardcore ping pong without the table, usually involving a thong)
always where the sea meets the shore
making it difficult for swimmers to go in and out of the sea
the booming, angry voice of the lifeguards
arab-israelis having huge, full family picnics on the grassy knolls next to the jaffa sea
bbq smells
laughing, screaming fire. fire.
they can be attacked from all sides
they attack from all sides
the call to prayer sounds from the mosque
black flags are in the water
signifying no swimming today
you look in the water and mobs of people are swimming
waves crashing
lifeguards screaming from their bullhorns
walking to the central bus station or the tahana merkazit
the “bad part of town”
area heavily populated with immigrants from thailand, philippines, and africa
i’ve never had a problem there
trying to find the sherut that runs to petah tikvah on shabbat
it can seem business as usual, he said
but don’t be fooled, there is nothing “normal” about this situation, he said
40 km away, people are dying, he said
upon my return, discussing the residual contradictory thoughts and feelings and experiences from my trip with my friend
they mentioned freud’s “uncanny”

as wikipedia states:  …..concept of an instance where something can be both familiar yet alien at the same time, resulting in a feeling of it being uncomfortably strange.[1] Because the uncanny is familiar, yet incongruous, it often creates cognitive dissonance within the experiencing subject, due to the paradoxical nature of being simultaneously attracted to yet repulsed by an object. This cognitive dissonance often leads to an outright rejection of the object, as one would rather reject than rationalize, as in the uncanny valley effect.

my experience of everything all at once
what to do with that

*To read Anna and Taylor’s responses to above inkshedding and Maree’s responses to their responses click InksheddingResponsestoResponses

“Batsheva Dancers Take Cover” by Wendy Perron

“Can Dance Address the Israel-Palestine Divide?” by Wendy Perron

“What It Was Like in the Streets on Ferguson’s Worst Night” by Joel Anderson

“What My Bike Has Taught Me About White Privilege” by J. Dowsett


Laura Dodsworth, photographer
Bare Reality: 100 women and their breasts
For review of the work click here.

Last Week Tonight John Oliver

What can a person do?

“Appropriation vs. Appreciation” by Browntourage, Mo Juicy

Noa Zuk’s A Droom Come Tree

Excerpt from Eve Ensler’s Insecure at Last: Losing it in Our Security Obsessed World

Arts 21: Dance Theater, Pina Bausch Interview

Les Ballets C de la B: Out of Context – for Pina

“The Untenable Economics of Dancing” by Andy Horowitz

Some interesting questions and thoughts and happenings
“Is Your Halloween Costume Racist?” by Kat Lazo
“The Three Letter Word Driving a Gender Revolution” by Elizabeth Braw

Sounds….Portlandia theme song

Tere O’connor Bleed

Ohad Naharin Rehearsal Max

Dialogue with Bell Hooks and Laverne Cox at The New School

Partial Continuous Attention

“Ebola Crisis Turns a Corner as U.S. Issues New Treatment Protocols” by Anna Driver
The enhanced guidance is centered on three principles:

  • All healthcare workers undergo rigorous training and are practiced and competent with PPE, including putting it on and taking it off in a systemic manner
  • No skin exposure when PPE is worn
  • All workers are supervised by a trained monitor who watches each worker putting PPE on and taking it off.


photo from The Express Tribune with the International New York Times

Kathleen Hermesdorf

Bebe Miller’s Necessary Beauty

Ate 9 Sally Meets Stu

“Gender Neutral Pronouns: When They Doesn’t Identify as Either Male or Female”
by Steven Petrow, The Washington Post 

“Young Jean Lee Tackles Straight White Men”
by Eliza Bent, American Theatre: A Publication of Theatre Communications Group

I agree with this!
” Why I Choreograph”  by Ohad Naharin, Dance Magazine 

“Ohad Naharin on Batsheva Dance Company: ‘It’s About Doing more with Less'”
by Gia Kourlas, Timeout NY

Emanuel Gat Dance The Goldlandbergs (excerpts)

Nox: The Greek goddess or personification of the night
Also, Nox:


“Grand Jury Reaches Decision in Michael Brown Case”
by Charlie Riedel/AP, NPR

“Ferguson, goddamn: No Indictment for Darren Wilson is no Surprise”
by Syreeta McFadden, The Guardian

“Ferguson and Other Cities React to Grand Jury Decision Not to Indict Darren Wilson”
NY Times

“The Disappearance of 43 Mexican Students is an Atrocity. But It’s No Isolated Incident.”
by Eline Gordts, The Huffington Post

“Conflict Kitchen Controversy Displays Fear of Facing Palestinian Reality”
by Ella Mason, Jewish Voice for Peace Pittsburgh, Muzzlewatch

“US Department of Justice Opens Investigation into Eric Garner’s Death”
by Paul Lewis, The Guardian