Salutation

Celebrating a milestone for Slicing Tomatoes: this 60th entry with the 30th Pinay artist featured. This poem collaboration, “Salutation” is with acclaimed Florida-based choreographer and dancer JoAnna Ursal, existing between the personal and ekphrastic observation. What I loved about this particular dance by JoAnna is the swirling of the arms outward as a way of homage and prayer to self, to origins, and also to something beyond us. And in the movement of moderate speed and then to quick and then to slow, commands a reflection for past, origins, and present. Her chant song that accompanies the dance envelops the dancer’s movements as reinforcement but also as spiritual protection. Especially now, writing beautiful poetry and making poignant art feels very needed amidst the current climate.

This is also for all of the stellar Pinay artists who have collaborated and contributed in some way to Slicing Tomatoes. As JoAnna so beautifully put it, “What an honor to be a part of your creative matrix!” An amazing creative matrix it has been, and I feel so lucky and blessed to have collaborated with so many amazing Pinay artists. Pinay artists are indeed not just in the Motherland but everywhere from North America, South America, Europe, Australia, and the Middle East. Y’all are all over the map! Yes!

Please do check out JoAnna Ursal in the Featured Artist section. There you will find more about her inspirations, choreography, and performances.

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Video: “the voices of my ancestors dance thru my limbs” by JoAnna Ursal, 2018
Original Song-Poem: “I Visited Coffins In My Head” by JoAnna Ursal, 2018

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