Tonight I had the pleasure of attending the performance of Patterns of Breathing. The performance consisted of one artist, Tori Lane, with interpretive and autobiographical topics expressed through spoken word and dance. Words cannot express the power of her work. Raw emotion, and the journey of one woman from abuse to reclaimed freedom and acceptance of self.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Tori for a project on trauma healing and artistic expression. When asked about how she found artistic expression helpful in her journey to find healing Tori said:
“I know without a doubt that I would not have reached the place I am at now in processing trauma if it were not for the utilization of artistic expression. As I began seriously exploring my artistry I found a block when I wouldn’t let all of myself, including the memories and affects of trauma, enter into my artistic process. I also discovered the reverse to be true. In processing trauma I can only get so far without the use of my creative faculties. When I write, paint or dance my way through an issue, I am able to reach the depths of it and move through it more authentically.”
More than just poems and dance of overcoming trauma, the performance was filled with the simplicity of the ordinariness of life. From waking in the morning and drinking that first cup of coffee, to playing tag as a child.
Walking away from the performance this evening I am truly amazed at how an artist can transport someone to a different time and place. How a poem or a dance can take us on a journey of emotion. Even more so, I am amazed at the power of spoken word, to heal the author and the audience, to transform the lives of all those blessed to hear those spoken words.