Remember, Forgive Yourself Through Art

Another holiday season is fast approaching. Who have you been this year?

Were you your best self? Were you even you?

These are the things we should think about as we look forward. Looking back.

Every new year is another opportunity to reflect. Take a breath. Gather your strength.

Memories get distorted by our perspectives so we have to reach out to others. Did I harm you? Am I holding a grudge because you harmed me?

We enter the new year through music. The blowing of the shofar, with it’s unique notes, meant to touch the insides we didn’t even know could still feel.

Go back inside your mind to the place of a child.

Not with tears or demands, but with awe and love.

We are not being judged by a court of law. We are sitting down with our parent, who loves us, and just wants us to visit more often.

Go. Elevate yourself. Open the book.

Remember. Forgive.

Forgive yourself. Forgive others.

Zikaron.

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The process of developing a music video is a nebulous one. One of my favorite opportunities it affords is to sit down with an ethereal sound and visualize it. Last week’s Torah portion, “Re’eh”, was my Bar Mitzvah portion. It means “See”.

When we see something, we know it is real. Seeing is believing. Pics of it didn’t happen. I grew up in Missouri, the “Show-me” state.

Seeing something is inherently being in its presence. Or at least, it was until cameras were invented.

Now we can see through time. And space.

I don’t have to describe to you what someone in 1904 looked like, or what the surface of Mars is. I can show you.

Now sight can happen past, present and future.

I’ve seen it, and it stays with me. I visualize it, and make it real.

But what if our minds play tricks on us? There are a host of diseases that rob us of our memories.

What if we saw something that wasn’t actually there?

We have to acknowledge that our sight is not the end-all be all of trust. And our mental state changes constantly.

So with that in mind, when given the opportunity to depict this wonderful song “Zikaron” by Pharaoh’s Daughter, I wanted to play on the treachery of memory. And what better symbol is there than the tides?

Light comes and goes over the course of a day. The waves are connected to the moon as it waxes and wanes each month.

Time passes, and we age. We start off simply, and then burst into energetic balls of potential. And eventually, we return back to where we started.

I was blessed to collaborate with Anna Schon and Basya Schechter in bringing this project to life. Both of them have a wonderful sense of how the human body can communicate a story through movement. And of course, the skills to pull it off.

Light, form and interaction all play a part in bringing the idea of “Zikaron” (remembrance) to your eyes and ears.

Maybe it will please your eyes. Maybe it will hit you inside like a shofar blast. Maybe it will make you get up and dance.

Hopefully it will give you a thrill and make the upcoming Rosh Hashonah more meaningful as you approach it.

I know that for me, art is saving my soul this year.