“The Telling” is not just a show.
The multimedia program -- which was first presented in 2011 -- is for female aspiring artists who want to weave their stories of abuse into performances of spoken word, dance, music and film.
Coming up next weekend, August 22-24 is a workshop for people who want to participate in a second staging, which is tentatively scheduled for October 2015.
“No one around is doing this,” says Marta Luzim, founder and president of Give Her A Voice, the organization producing the performance. “We ignite the art from the trauma. We all have an artist within. When someone has been traumatized by abuse [the manifestation] is an everyday occurrence. We all have trauma that is very unconscious to us. Then we wake up and wonder, ‘Why am I feeling this way? Why do I hesitate like this? Why do I stop myself?’ Well, that was something that happened in their lives from sexual abuse all the way to abandonment.”
Luzim has 35 years experience in the counseling psychology field as a creative coach and a psycho-spiritual therapist. She is also a playwright and a novelist.
“For myself, both professionally and personally, I have always worked with the arts…which is very parallel with many healing processes,” she explains. “We have everybody get together and talk and share. They begin to feel the support of a community and acceptance. Trust is very important.”
Her daughter Lara Luzim-Zaytsev, a New York-based choreographer, serves as the show’s artistic director and works specifically with the workshop participants shaping their movement in the show.
“I like…[the] approach of going inside the body first to connect and locate what the body is feeling and what the body is sensing,” says Luzim-Zaytsev. “And doing that, it also helps the individual go into a certain chain of body memories and it becomes a process of knowing inside and out. And then we develop movement based on that experience.”
Luzim says that they then go through various exercises from meditation and journal-writing to visualization and movement. “We move deeper and deeper, allowing this story to become an actual drama. And by doing that we activate more freedom and healing. This process is never ending. There are many memories that are fragments and come up bit by bit.”
The participants have to have had some sort of previous experience in recovery in order to “hold the energy over the weekend,” since if they are just coming out of an abusive situation their main focus is still coping and surviving. “Our organization is more like the next step,” says Luzim.
Evelyn Park, board member and production manager for the show, says she knew right away that they had to repeat their effort from the first performance three years ago at Fort Lauderdale’s Cinema Paradiso.
“So many people came forward after the performance and talked to me personally to tell us how brave all the women were onstage. It was really pretty incredible.”
She went on to explain that the workshop fee is to pay for expenses (materials, food, renting the space).
“It’s really a donation to our organization,” Park says. “We’re 100 percent a volunteer organization. The funds go toward the organization and also toward ‘The Telling’ performance.
IF YOU GO
Give Her A Voice workshop
When: 5 to 8 p.m. Aug. 22; 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 23 and Aug. 24
Where: ArtServe, 1350 E. Sunrise Blvd., Fort Lauderdale
Contact: 305-803-0972 or GiveHerAVoice.org.