Three standing ovations, four and a half hours of performing, three more hours of discussion and sharing, a beautiful story-changing workshop, and hundreds of vegan cookies later, a whirlwind weekend of all three of Lala’s stories has ignited the wildfire of community discussion and growth that we always dreamed it would.
Conversations this weekend have ranged across spiritual transcendence, political correctness, racism, discrimination, meditation, personal transformation, death, loss, grief, the importance of expression and listening, hope and empowerment, and “loving, living, and leaving this world”. Lala’s messages have reached into kitchens and coffee shops, workplaces and yoga studios, giving us the fuel and fire to have conversations we desperately yearn to engage with.
As playwright/performer, I listen as deeply as I can to all characters (fictional and here in every day life. . .as we are all ‘characters’!) to hear the messages and truths each one carries to me. I search beyond and through the externals of race, gender, age, and class, to seek out the perspective of the speaker as clearly as I can perceive it. This listening is a blessing as it opens up my understanding and comprehension of the diverse, complex and extraordinarily beautiful world we inhabit. This listening forces me beyond my own fears and insecurities, and the desire to protect this ego-self and ‘be right’ all the time. I step into a place where each story is valid. Every speaker is true from his or her own perspective. And I feel who I am expanding immensely from simply listening. Thank you to all who shared their stories with me this weekend.
And the journey continues. Two more weekends of all three shows. Please tell your friends. And keep reaching out. Your emails and stories via facebook, or phone call are treasures to us. June 12th is our community discussion of “A Star Called Love”, a World Cafe style dialogue with tea and snacks, open to all, 1-3pm. And next weekend is the play writing workshop from 1-4pm, also at the Pacific Cultural Center. I hope to see you all there. Rivera Sun