Village Dancing, Village Drums

Claudio Naranjo; Antonio Asin

Price $39.95

The Material:

Simurgh is the Persian word meaning "thirty birds". The story of the Simurgh is the search of thirty birds for their King. It's the story of thirty birds looking for thirty birds, as described in the Sufi Classic, The Conference of the Birds.

This idea is addressed in a warm-hearted, lively and humorous look in on the actual events of a work day at the school. A demonstration is presented by Mr. Gold of how to build the Simurgh, one creature made from many bodies, through drumming and dancing in many hidden traditions. (Refer to Talk of the Month, Issue #37, for more information about the Simurgh).

Mise En Scene:

Claudio Naranjo's wife, Elena, had promised one of the children in the community she would do her best to be there for the party on her fifth birthday. The day after the celebration, the Naranjos, Fourth Way teacher friends of Mr. Gold's, and the Asins, their friends, joined with many of Mr. Gold's close pupils for a day of work together. What you see on this videotape is the progression of the topic of the Simurgh as it was investigated throughout the work day, completely unrehearsed, as it happened.

Initially the experiment is conducted using a group of people who have never drummed together. Then, later in the day, you will see the same idea -- that of each drummer as part of one creature -- used by a group that has drummed together for five years, including Menlo Macfarlane, one of the top international instrumental percussionists in North America.

It is actually like a village situation where the drummers listen to one another, drum together and become one. This is a real demonstration of the idea of building a cluster and directing it into unity.

The Technicians:

The videotape you hold in your hands has been produced under the technical direction of E.J. Gold. He brings to video many years of film experience and shares his talents as an editor and cameraman with several members of the community who have a background in film. As well, a few members of the group were given the opportunity to use video equipment for the first time under careful supervision.

With the advent of professional broadcast qulaity three-quarter inch equpment, Gateways is now able to provide you with a full body of new and adventurous work material. Some tapes are also available in 3/4" and 1" broadcast format. Permission to air is required for all broadcasts.