Image 1: video from made for me & you; Image 2/3/4: performance documentation

made for me & you

Collaborator, Writer, Performer with The Clinic Performance

made for me & you is a 15-minute one-on-one performative exchange designed to offer a small moment of joy, wonder, and healing. made for me & you premiered digitally, with a trauma-informed focus on healthcare workers in 2021.

made for me & you is about my grandfather’s love for Nat King Cole, where hope exists in the ongoing pandemic, and what we do to feel whole in times of decreased physical intimacy. We share stories about the people we miss, and we sing, hum, or dance with them.

Halfway through the experience, I ask: “What are alternatives to hugging?” The responses surprise me every time: an unexpected text message, visualizing a hug, phone calls, activating our oxytocin receptors in the palms of our hands, and many poignant responses doubting a replacement is possible.

Through research with gratitude to Resmaa Menakem and James Coan, we explore call & response singing, humming, and gentle swaying to calm our nervous systems. The vulnerability and connection we cultivate with others when we do these things together is palpable.

At one point, I turn on a loud and cheesy karaoke track of Nat King Cole’s “L-O-V-E”, offering options for each audience member to participate as they wish. Then, they offer a song. One person taught me a beautiful hymn. Another belted Aretha Franklin’s “Respect”. With most people, we listen to their song on Spotify together. You can listen to the playlist-in-progress here

I offer made for me & you online from home, in person at festivals for passerby, and in person in collaboration with community-based producers for scheduled engagements. 

made for me & you is part of The Clinic Performance’s project Resiliency Moments. To learn more about The Clinic, click here.