I acknowledge that we are all residing on unceded colonized Indigenous lands. I respect and am acting upon connections with the past, present, and future with Indigenous communities recognized as custodians of the lands and waters.
Jenelle Duvel is multi-talented, generous, energetic, inspiring, and dynamic. A facilitator with the Women’s Centre Cultural Program and Status of Women’s Council in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Artistic Director of Spirit Song Festival, Indigenous drummer singer, and co-creator of Eastern Owl, the list of initiatives and achievements is outstanding. I am a third generation Chinese Canadian artist/arts/community/social/cultural activist.
Jenelle and I met for our first time during the workshop. My connection with Jenelle was immediate, spontaneous, smooth and effortless with respect, admiration, and trust. With a collaborative agreement achieved in 2 minutes regarding the presentation content, Jenelle and I each spoke for 10 mins at the start of the session. In a circle with the participants, Jenelle and I spoke about the various tools, experiences, and ways of learning and playing music, such as being schooled or not, learning by ear, and occupations such as writing music for films and documentaries and running festivals.
Jenelle and I were to present a workshop. Instead Jenelle, myself, and the 15-20 participants united in a circle musically and collectively, and shared, listened, spoke, collaborated, worked, played, and laughed together. Music is a basic, sensual, ancient form of human utterance, communication, rapport. Anyone can participate from toe or finger tapping, humming, singing, nodding, moving, by playing your body or an instrument. With this ease PLUS the golden gift of being a chosen Primary Colour participants, the playing ground was one giant connection. The music, entrancing. Most striking was the opening piece. Participants brought instruments, guitars, sang, listened. Everyone jumped in full body spirit mind with open arms embrace and confidence. Playing and making music kicked in as participants were itching to play. The jam begun and hit the roof.
Flashes from the jam of what I recall, felt, sensed… distortion, poetry, memories, darkness, spirits, sobre, clouded, pure, warm, blue, intuitive, gutsy, bright, energetic, flourishing, flyée, exciting, boundless, blissful, confirming, touchante, on common ground, chez nous, at ease, inspirational, la magie…
Comments ? Yes. An excerpt taken of the session and the jam on video would have been appreciated as a recollection. I was so present in the moment, I have little to no memory souvenir sense of who participated, how they participated, were they nervous, comfortable, unclear, what did they play, what were their impressions… The musical connections were overwhelming. I was left suspended high in the air after the jam. The jam took over and magic was the overriding finale. Extraordinary. A beautiful finish. I would love to, want to, wanted to, connect, talk, exchange, hug, laugh further with the participants.
Janet is a social activist in heart, mind, and spirit, inspired by people, arts, culture, education, and ecology. A great believer in the chaos theory, that there is order in chaos, Janet continues taking chances in the magic of the moment. As a third generation Chinese Canadian, artist and community organizer, Janet loves to play, explore, discover, collaborate and work with artists, workers, and individuals in inter-, multi-, and mixed-disciplinary settings.