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Leah Zeiger

first performed on December 05, 2020
Various locations in and around the artist's home
performed once in 2020


Los Angeles, CA


In dealing with the intense separation and destruction of community due to the pandemic, I found myself coiled in a battle of will against the Judge that lives inside of me. The Judge likes to tell me that I am no good, that I am a failure, that I am in fact NOT a dancer (that one hurts). I like to tell the Judge to shove off, leave me alone, stop talking. And then I don’t dance.

The year of isolation and identity crisis continued on, all the while I was (somewhat unbeknownst to me) still dancing. I was forced inside, in my bedroom, away from people, and I danced there and used my phone to capture what I was doing. I thought nothing of it, and the Judge thought it was laughable. It was a way to pass time, mostly.

It was also a way to learn how to mourn and fight at the same time. Trump continued to erode the threads of our reality, I was living back at home in the same room that housed childhood abuse, fires raged all around me (literally, and metaphorically), and my dog of twelve years passed away. I had to figure out how to mourn and fight at the same time, and I did that through passing the time dancing in my bedroom with my phone on record.

At the end of the year, I needed a recent work example to submit to a program I was applying for (a program I have practically no chance of receiving, but I nonetheless applied), and so I tried to compile the videos of myself dancing in my bedroom, my backyard, the park. And I discovered how many hours I had collected, how many places and t-shirts and angles I had explored. I began editing, and cried through the process until it was done.

Watching the film feels like watching me. It’s stunned the Judge—she ran out of insults. The civil war is not over, but I think now I might be winning.