Live Virtual Group Session: 12pm EDT June 10th 2020

We welcomed 22 people from U.S. states including New York, New Jersey, and California and other countries including India, Bahrain and Canada. Together, we watched “The Last Performance,” a one-minute film written and directed by Reza Moayedi (2013, Iran). 

After two viewings of the film, we opened the discussion by asking what we knew about people in the film — the musician, his companion, the person in the control room.  Hands were “raised” immediately, and participants shared aspects of the film that resonated personally for them. We wondered if the two people on stage were a father and daughter, or perhaps a patient and caretaker. We also thought about how the story might have changed with different casting — for example, what if the director had chosen actors with other apparent ages or genders, or if the musical instrument had been a piano or electric guitar? One participant drew a parallel to two plays by Eugene Ionesco: “The Chairs” and “The Lesson.” We explored how the film’s title shaped our ideas about what we saw, especially because it came at the end of the work rather than at the beginning. 

Our prompt was “Write about a space you’d like to return to,” which opened up the many ways that we can think about space. One writer discussed the architecture of space and the difference between public and private spaces. Another spoke from the personal perspective, thinking about conscious and unconscious spaces, and the way we lose ourselves to become part of the larger world.  We also thought about the spaces that we’d like to go back to that no longer exist, such as spaces where our parents were still young and healthy, or spaces of innocence before we knew things we wished we did not. Our final two readers used sensory details to populate their spaces. For one, that was the French Alps, a place dotted with red poppies and “peppered by hamlets,” and open to freedom, and for the other, Hanging Basket Lake, with water so ice-cold that the narrator shivers just to look at it. That latter piece ended with a tumble, and we noticed how the earlier details let us feel the impact of the fall in our own bodies.      

Participants are warmly encouraged to share what you wrote below (“Leave a Reply”), to keep the conversation going here, bearing in mind that the blog of course is a public space where confidentiality is not assured.

Please join us for our next session Sunday, June 14th at 3pm EDT, with more times listed on our Live Virtual Group Sessions page.

We look forward to seeing you again soon!

THE LAST PERFORMANCE
Reza Moayedi
DIRECTOR , WRITER & PRODUCER – Reza Moayedi / DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY – Nima Daneshmand / EDITOR – Saeed Hemati / SOUND – Maziar Hajati / ASSISTANT DIRECTOR – Haleh Alizadeh / ASSITANT CAMERA – Masoud Ramezanpour / CAST – Gholamreza Amani , Mona Sayad , Manouchehr Atashak

6 thoughts on “Live Virtual Group Session: 12pm EDT June 10th 2020

  1. Hanging Basket Lake
    The uncertainty of the climb. Possibly a fruitless search but the command of my heart was always “Up,” “Up,” to mountains and the straight edge at the top of the scree was so hinting at a destination, a reward…indeed the last hand on the last lichen-struck boulder drew me up to a lake at eye level, a deep blue-almost-black drop of water held tremblingly in a bowl of rock and so ice-cold as to freeze my bones without my even going in. And the view at my back wasn’t the point. I knew someone waited for me below, a string pulled me back like an errant kite, she hadn’t wanted me to soar and the descent was like a bruising tumble, a fall from grace.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The Climb~~~

    On a cool, crisp autumn day, I felt the need to push myself, to reassure myself, to re-awaken myself.
    To test my physical limits and more importantly, my mental limits.
    To renew my obligation to myself to live life to the fullest.
    And so began the climb.

    Rough-hewn stone steps, a thousand in number, etched into the side of this imposing mountain.
    Along each side of the trail, pines and maples dressed in shades of red and gold adorned the view.
    The trickling of early morning ice cover melting and dripping across the path.
    Jagged, tilted gray slabs of stone upon whose foundation I entrusted my life.

    With each step taken, there was a renewal of my life’s energy stream, a renewal of hope.
    Each step bringing me closer to the summit,
    I paused to catch my breath.
    Looking downward the world looked so small, looking upward the crest was still out of sight.

    Placing my feet firmly on the step that had the number 999 painted on its surface, I stopped.
    I stopped to give thanks to my Creator who had helped me to reach this point in my life,
    this point in my recovery from an earlier heart attack.
    Stepping onto the final step, I cried out in jubilation!

    Standing at the top of Jack’s Mountain, I gazed down upon the valley below.
    So serene a scene, so unaware of what had been accomplished by this tired, sweaty climber.
    It meant the world to me and still does.
    And when those days come when I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed,
    I think of that climb on that cool, crisp day in autumn
    and a smile spreads across my face.

    Like

  3. michele348

    The Climb~~~
    On a cool, crisp autumn day, I felt the need to push myself, to reassure myself, to re-awaken myself.
    To test my physical limits and more importantly, my mental limits.
    To renew my obligation to myself to live life to the fullest.
    And so began the climb.

    Rough-hewn stone steps, a thousand in number, etched into the side of this imposing mountain.
    Along each side of the trail, pines and maples dressed in shades of gold and red adorned the view.
    The trickling of early morning ice cover melting and dripping across the path.
    Jagged, tilted gray slabs of stone upon whose foundation I entrusted my life.

    With each step taken, there was a renewal of my life’s energy stream, a renewal of hope.
    Each step bringing me closer to the summit,
    I paused to catch my breath.
    Looking downward the world looked so small, looking upward the crest was still out of sight.

    Placing my feet firmly on the step that had the number 999 painted on its surface, I stopped.
    I stopped to give thanks to my Creator who had helped me to reach this point in my life,
    this point in my recovery from an earlier heart attack.
    Stepping onto the final step, I cried out in jubilation!

    Standing at the top of Jack’s Mountain, I gazed down upon the valley below.
    So serene a scene, so unaware of what had been accomplished by this tired, sweaty climber.
    It meant the world to me and still does.
    And when those days come when I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed,
    I think of that climb on that cool, crisp day in autumn
    and a smile spreads across my face.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sakshi

    “Made of books and playgrounds
    with secure roof over my head,
    I wonder if going home is still a familiar journey,
    for I, now know what reality tastes like.
    At 9 I knew what familiar, unfamiliar faces craved_
    a touch unwanted, unwelcome, undetected,
    unwashed, unforgettable,
    I wish to return to my age of innocence.”

    Thanks for another great session.

    Like

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