© mj 2019


through the looking glass

Posted on by Molly Johnson

my tour with le carré des lombes has come and gone. ten cities, ten shows. time flies when you're devouring skies.

i spent two weeks on holiday but my body is still fatigued. i could easily pull a rip van winkle (she says as she wakes at 3am with the wrong time zone embedded in her body). over the course of the last month, i've been to france, belgium, germany, and the netherlands, and back and forth and back again, to find myself here, in toronto, settled for the first time in what feels like forever. i'm no [insert name of someone who tours all the time] but i've been on the go for a while now.

travel may not be synonymous with rest and relaxation, but it is one of the greater tools for learning. and though seeing your world through a new lens comes with its challenges, i continue to relish these opportunities to research, reflect, and absorb information. et voila, after five weeks in foreign and not so foreign lands, this is what i now know:

- good coffee is important to me and when i find it i feel at home.

- there is an openness and a generosity in canada that we should be very proud of and never ashamed of. sometimes when we travel we are made to feel we are wrong. i think this is bogus. i now accept it as par for the course in some cities and cultures, but i no longer give it any weight. i'm just grateful to be from a place where visitors are wanted and welcomed and encouraged to be who they are. canada is pretty rad. (the east coast of canada, even radder). we should take a cue from the europeans and be ultra confident...in our kind, polite, welcoming culture.

- this international inferiority complex pervades many areas, especially our art. i'm over it. it is not healthy or helpful to revere others and put ourselves somewhere further down the pecking order. admire and be inspired, absolutely. there is greatness out there; let it move you and drive you beyond your own expectations. but know that we are all peers travelling the same path. some people just have shinier shoes, segways, freedom to run in circles, teams of trumpeters who announce them before they arrive...etc. there are advantages and disadvantages across the board. and the fact is there is crap being made in canada, and there is crap being made in europe. so long as we go boldly, we have no reason to feel less than. art is an equal playing field, or that's what i've decided for myself.

- that said, we need to keep pushing. there are exceptional artists in this big old world. we can't applaud mediocrity, especially not in our own backyard. we need to ask ourselves to be better and demand more of each other. we need to see everything we can from within our borders and beyond. we need to be honest with each other. the best way to support our community is by asking it to grow.

- it's possible that too much bread is not good for you.

- working with people you admire and want to spend time with personally and professionally is the best. it's the ideal. choose it whenever you can.

- being a dancer is my jam. i don't know if dance is a perfect art form, if it truly translates in the way we wish as often as we wish it to, but i remain in awe of the power of this work from within. it has saved me from drowning. it has coloured everything about me. i will give myself to this magnificent beast for as long as i can.

- birds. they are always around at exactly the right times, and they are a constant reminder that what is happening around me is perfection and all i need to do is choose to enjoy it.

there is more, of course. there is always more. i think that may be the point of these adventures. to remind ourselves of the vastness of it all.


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