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  • Writer's pictureLauren Godla

Dancing Over Water

Updated: Jan 31, 2022

Dirt and Glitter is the newly formed Performance Adventure Company directed by Del Norte County's own Lauren Godla. Lauren grew up just minutes away from the Smith River in Hiouchi, CA and regards the river like a beloved family member. She graduated from Del Norte High in 2008, from UC Davis in 2012, and spent her following decade studying dance and performance, adventuring, teaching and performing along the west coast and beyond. She moved back to Del Norte County in early 2020 and is happy to call Gasquet home. The Spring and Summer of 2021 Lauren spent rehearsing, touring and performing nationally with Project Bandaloop, a Pioneer in the Vertical Dance World. Deeply inspired by their work, and her teachers within that project, Lauren wants to bring Vertical Dance home. Bridging her love for Art and Adventure with Dirt and Glitter, she collaborates with dancers, visual artists, musicians, and river guides to create riverside performances . Audiences can watch performers dance over the water, sing between canyons, and celebrate our living bodies of water from the banks of the river or sometimes even from the river itself.

In 2016, Lauren directed Breathing Bridges, which gathered amazing community support and involvement. Redwood Rides, the local adventure outfitter, donated boats to the cause, so audience members could paddle themselves along to see each riverside performer. Don and Martha Olson hosted Lauren, and many of the performers in a beautiful artist residency that lasted for the better part of the summer. Jessica Slayton, another Del Norte County local, and talented visual Artist designed an image for the event you may see around town. Two lunges, connected by a bridge. She also contributed an outdoor art installation, and original paintings along the trail down to the river. She was joined by Mary Aday, another amazing visual artist, from Portland, Oregon. Gillian Vickers, a dancer, yogi, and massage therapist from Sonoma County was instrumental in organizing the event and she also performed two dances. One on land, and one over the water, suspended from the bridge in a beautiful golden silk. Kristen Rulifson, Lauren's long time collaborator and co founder of FloorPlay, a Dance Comedy Group out of the Bay Area, performed alongside Lauren in a raft and off of the side of Slant Bridge, over the Middle Fork Smith River, in a climbing harness. Lauren hopes she'll be able to get a break from Tanzfabrik, the Dance School she's studying with in Berlin, Germany and be able to return for Dirt and Glitter's first season, this summer 2022. Iris Benson, a Bay Area Comedian, came up for the event and made people laugh from their kayaks and canoes. Heather Lang, a bay area circus artist, danced as her friend and vocalist Rebekah Stever illuminated our ears. Katy Gurin, an engineer, climate action consultant, and poet shared beautiful eco centered poetry. Juliane Magarino, another Del Norte local, who was in high school at the time, rehearsed and performed alongside Gillie in an aerial silk dance. Her younger sister Simone transformed into a mermaid, with a beautiful tail, and weaved between the audience members as they paddled to the next performer. Hannah Levy, a jazz vocalist and recent addition to Fantastic Negrito, closed the show as four dancers, flipped, expanded, and flew through the air before dropping into the water.

It was a magical community event! Dirt and Glitter will bring to life more experiences like Breathing Bridges as we work to honor water, celebrate women, and try to understand what it means to be human on this beautiful living planet.

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