Last September Eve Ensler announced that Berkeley Rep would premiere the play, I Am An Emotional Creature, based on her book about the lives of girls around the world.
When Eve said, "I want to do something big in Berkeley,” I immediately envisioned a participatory community ritual— as an alternative to a rally, performance or march—to express our collective outrage and vision related to ending gender violence. Eve immediately said Yes! Do it- let's make it part of One Billion Rising, the V-Day movement that will culminate with gatherings around the world on February 14, 2013.
Ritual—the creation of a sacred and beautiful energetic container for emotion, speaking truth, and voicing determination to change society--seemed the best way to inspire, transform, and ignite solidarity with other groups around the world.
Many of us—activists, ritualists, and performers—have long been inspired by Eve’s words, her work with Vday and City of Joy, and her decades-long mission to join art and politics. The beautiful successes of Occupy in expressing discontent and the breadth of challenges we face inspired us to add public and spiritual to that potent combination.
Creating a ritual can only be done in community, and so an extraordinary all-volunteer group of Bay Area activists, performers and healers came together to share the numerous spiritual and cultural traditions that help communities heal in times of crisis. We collectively felt the Four Directions and Elements—a system common to traditions around the world (with some significant differences) —seemed ideal for expressing the themes central to Eve’s work and to our own personal experiences recovering from harm--Dreaming, Anger, Grief, and Resiliency.
We have incorporated the contributions of many luminous performers who bring the powerful medicine of the Drum. We convened a group of accomplished youth leaders to voice their perspectives and needs. We’ve woven in dance, chant, martial arts, and song as well as opportunities for all to participate. Our event producers are bringing it all together with brilliant logistical mastery.
We have grown into a dynamic co-creative force excited to experience these June 24 moments along with you and to help direct our collective energies toward the well-being of our girls, young women, families, communities, as well as those of peoples around the globe.
Please join us and make history.
--Carolyn Hunt, Berkeley ritualist
Who’s Involved (alpha):
Mona de Vestel
Laura Toller Gardner
Sarah Anne Minkin
Afia Walking Tree
In-kind Service Donations
Activists ASL Interpreters Drummers Marketing and Outreach Coordinators Performers Production Managers Ritualists
Starline Janitorial Supply Company