Spirit Dancing

Maia at age 20 with two of her dancers

As many of you know I have a “second life” in the virtual world of Second Life. In this world I have created the New EarthStar Island Estate where I hold gatherings, ThothHorRa Speakings and Inititation and…spirit dancing!

In my earlier years for a time I was a ballroom dancing teacher (with my mother), ballroom exibition dancer and also taught and performed interpretive dancing. While that is long past from my life in Second Life it is blossoming for me all over again and actually on an even more expanded level.

Caryl (who uses the name if “Meridith” in SL and was a ballet dancer and instructor for over 30 years in real life) and I have formed the SPIRIT Dance Company in Second Life. We have a group of dancers and we do the choreography for the routines as well as dance them. How is this done? Well, one purchases the motion capture dances (created like in the movie AVATAR) and then the avatar attaches to a “HUD” into which you load the dances. This is an animation device that animates the dancer and as many dancers as she/he invites into the HUD. Then the dancer attached to the HUD selects the dances and even portions of dances and must click from one to another right on the music cue. So they are the creators of the routine, combining dances and dance segments into a whole perform in sync with the music.

Caryl and I not only create and dance these routines but create the backgrounds for each performanace and work out the many details in order to deal with the limitations of computer rendering large scenes for the viewer which can create “lag” and cause the dancers to appear out of sync with the music. It takes quite a bit of work and planning but to those whole love Dance it is worth it. To me dancing like singing, is the uplifting of the Spirit and I consider my dancing and performing in SL as part of my spiritual life and work.

Recently Caryl’s friend who is quite a tech in SL filmed her dance in sync with the music as one would see it if their avatar was sitting in the audience (and there was no undue lag at the time). This took many hours to film as SL is not video friendly due to the massive computations involved. We have been filmed before, but just segments and not a whole dance and then the music played with the filming in YouTube is not the music we were dancing to!

I wish to share with you Caryl Meridith’s dance as you would hear and see it performed in SL...

This next video was filmed by someone else “live” at a our recent dance program. It is snippets only and the music used is not what was played for these individual routines. A  few appear very much in the dark, which was not the case for the audience viewing the dances. Still it gives you an idea of an over-all production.

Thank you for allowing me to share my “other world” with you!

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