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S3.E9. Hannah & Molly

Updated: Mar 1

Hannah: Well, hello and welcome to the podcast where we talk about creating experimental art and trauma informed and sustainable ways that support artists, our communities and our organization as a whole. I'm Hannah b, and I'll be your host for this episode of Any Other Anythings.

Music Break*

Hannah: Hi all, welcome to episode 11 of season three. Of Any Other Anythings. I'm Hannah. B and I will be the host For this episode, um, this is my second season here with Grey Box Collective, and I'm so excited to continue making weird art about difficult things. It's one of my favorite things to do and I'm so honored to do it with Grey Box. But today I'm here with Molly. Hi, Molly.

Molly: Hey.

Hannah: um, in a moment we're gonna get into more of Molly's origin story, but first we're gonna start with a little check-in and resourcing first. So, hi Molly. How are you doing? And what are you thinking about?

Molly: Hey, Hannah B um, I'm doing well. It was not the day I anticipated.

Um, I've tried, I've noticed like coming out of Covid and pandemic and like living on Zoom, like this transition back to in real life, I've tried to have like Zoom days and non Zoom days, and then it's the days where I have to be both in person and on Zoom, it gets to be a lot. Um, so yeah, but this is like my last stop of the day, so I'm excited about, I'm excited to chat. Um, I think I mentioned this in. One, I I actually don't know if it was recording when I mentioned this, um, in another episode that like, it was really cool in season one that I got to talk to everyone. And now with sharing the hosting responsibilities, I don't get to chat with everyone. So I'm excited to chat with you today.

So how are you, Hannah B?

Hannah: Oh, I'm, I'm doing good. I'm excited to get to talk to you too, Molly. Um, yeah, today has been a bit crazy, to be honest. Um, it's been, uh, I use my voice all the time just like you, Molly, with teaching all day long. So I, um, I'm a little peopled out, so it's been kind of nice to just sit with someone familiar that I enjoy talking to, um, instead of it feeling like work.

That's what's kind of nice is that, um, talking with each other doesn't always feel like work. So yeah, I'm doing pretty good though

Molly: Good, good, good. Um, would you like me to facilitate the resourcing activity we talked about?

Hannah: Of course, yes.

Molly: Okay. So we talked about, um, Hannah, one of your favorite ones being like, when we start on the ground and we slowly build movement up from the ground.

And so thinking about like, what would be a way to transition that onto the podcast today? Um, thinking about bringing movement from like, the bottoms of our feet, all the way the rest of our body. So I will facilitate that. Um, and like if you're listening to this when you're driving, maybe not follow all of my cues, but like, as always, take what you need, leave the rest behind, edit as you wish.

And I'll also add, I'll focus mostly on joints. I really love resourcing activities that focus on our skeletal system. Like that is our built-in support system. I think it's great to be reminded of it. Um, it's also like, it's really solid in our body, which can help us help our nervous system. And, you know, I love my nervous system stuff.

Um, it can help our nervous system like, Just really know where we are in time and space and bring us into the present moment. Um, so wherever you are, uh, if you wanna change positions at any point, you're welcome to, but we'll start with, um, bringing your awareness to your feet and specifically to your toes, and then starting to find all the different ways that your toes can wiggle, uh, all the different movements of your toes.

And maybe you can find like some differentiate. I've been practicing, like my big toe moving differently than my other toes. Um, yes. And it's hard to talk and practice that one. So I'm gonna go back to wiggling. Um, and then letting that movement start to come up to your ankles. Um, and with your ankles. Yes.

You can circle them around. You can go through, uh, eversion and inversion so that like windshield wiper or back and forth, minor cracking. I don't know if the microphone's picking it up. Sorry. No,

Hannah: No, it's not catching it.

Molly: Good. Um, and then to our knees. Turns are that hinge joint and just getting curious about like what's possible in our knees right now.

And what I also enjoy about going through the skeletal system is we get to alternate between those, uh, really mobile joints like the ankles and then the more stable joints like our knees that just hinge a little extra movement in there, but for the most part just hinging then into our hips. So if you're seated, you are gonna feel your hips are start to really kick in for this one.

Um, and then hips are, Hips are very mobile joints. Um, so you got that ball and socket, all sorts of options. You're welcome to stand, um, if able and if you want to or just wiggle and see what happens. Then we can start to bring that movement up our spine, right? So you can start with our lumbar spine.

So that's really low spine. Maybe the sacrum is a nice visual. That triangle at the back of our pelvis. And it can ripple up to more thoracic spine between our shoulder blades, maybe the shoulder blades. Start to get some movement in. Think of the shoulder blades like gliding over your ribcage.

Then let's take a little detour to our actual shoulder joints. So like, like our hip joints, right? Ball and socket, lots of options. And then we can go for symmetry or asymmetry, whatever feels best. And we can always explore and get curious and like backtrack if needed. If you do something, you're like, I don't like that.

And stop. It's okay. It's your body. You make your choices. All right. All right. And then to our elbows. Our elbows, like our knees, that hinge not as many options there and then into our wrists. . If you want, you can also like hold your forearm with one hand and then explore the wrist movement. Um, you can feel the bones of your forearm, um, moving underneath your hand.

Maybe. Maybe that's a fun sensation. Maybe it's not. Maybe it's somewhere in between. And we can get into our hands more. We can get into our fingers.

And then taking it back through the arms, to the wrists, to the elbows, shoulders, come back to your spine. Cervical spine. So the top of our spine. Our neck. Allowing us to look around. You can shake your head yes and no. And side to side for, I don't know, that's the top of our spine. Hmm. How's that, Hannah B?

Hannah: That is definitely what I needed. That felt so good.

Molly: Oh, good.

Hannah: Even doing that, sitting, it just feels like such a, such a good reset for my body. Mm-hmm. . Um, especially with, um, a lot of us, our jobs is sitting a lot, and so even by allowing us, instead of having to go to the floor and by the end you need to be jumping in the air with this insane amount of energy, that this is just a good way to build yourself up.

Um, it's, it feels regulating. Feels, it feels really good in my body. How about you?

Molly: Good. Yes. I think I forget like how easy it is to do that and how you can do it like anywhere, anytime. And it can be, I, I wasn't watching the clock. It can be several minutes, like what I just did, but you can also just kind of go through it Hannah: Yeah.

Molly: Um, in like under a minute. Yeah, it's amazing the difference that it can really make. Yeah, I feel nice and warm now too.

Hannah: I know.

Molly: Not that I was super cold, but yeah.

Hannah: Well, um, you know how somewhat colors and things in life just make you feel cold. It gives you that cold feeling. I feel like even just by, and cold isn't bad.

Cold is still good. There's no good or bad, I feel like, but adding the warm back in, I feel like brings, um, makes my brain ready.

Molly: Oh, yeah.

Hannah: So I, I enjoyed that, which is, you know, whole nervous system. All the wonderful things.

Molly: Yes, yes. Well, and that's, um, Twyla Tharp says like a warm body's a ready body. So like, yeah.

Whether you are dancing or whether we're here, um, like I feel like my voice has even changed in just that.

Hannah: Mm-hmm. . Yeah. All right. So one of the things we're doing slightly differently this season, we're dividing out each episode into three segments. So the first segment is focusing on GBC creatives personal stories.

Another section is to talk about behind the scenes of our most recent projects. And the last section is where we lean into Any Other Anythings, which is our title. It's how we choose what we wanna spark a conversation about today. It, uh, brings us all together that any other are the little sprinkles on top.

I feel like in, in. Our conversations. It brings the richness and the, um, humanity into a lot of our projects I feel like. Um, so for a little transparency, we talked about structure and content of today prior to recording. So a lot of our content is spontaneous. The form we're working within has already been agreed upon by the both of us.

uh, up first we have holding space for GBC creatives origin stories on this platform. Origin stories can take a lot of shapes and it can look differently for anyone. Um, but we like to think of 'em as clues throughout our lives that suggested where we'd end up here today. Physically, professionally, personally, however way we wanna focus on.

Um, another way to think of these stories is parts of our journey. They don't always make it into our bios or our websites, but it's things that, um, We wanna include as part of our lives. Um, so today I'm holding space for Molly to share her story, um, as a formal exercise. This is often done with the challenge to the listener, to hold space for the speaker without interjection with minimal non-verbal communication, little vocal responses.

Um, so I'm gonna go quiet and Molly, whenever you're ready.

Molly: Cool. Thank you. Um, so I realized I think it was like this morning when I was getting ready for this, I was like, I didn't think this through. Cause it's like I have to do this too. Um, so it feels. Come in full circle. Um, and I will say as well, um, cuz I have the Trauma-Informed Creative Practices Podcast, I do like a really big origin story.

Um, cuz you don't just like accidentally end up talking about trauma and creativity in your life. Um, so I was like, okay, well. What could I really pull in for this today as my origin story and some of the clues? And so I think I'll focus mostly on, I call myself an accidental entrepreneur. Um, I, I like never intended to like, have a company, well, like, sort of, um, I never thought of myself as a, a real like business human until probably the past year or two when I was like, oh, I have like multiple LLCs.

Like it's not just Grey Box. Like I got other LLCs, like got the nonprofit branch. I've got like other, um, Other entities in the works. And so it's like, I guess I, I'm like a serial entrepreneur, but I did not intend to do that. And so, um, I was like, where did that start? Because that wasn't, that wasn't the goal.

That wasn't the dream. Right. Um, and I think about my best friend in high school, it was like she was always the business person, was like a major in business, had the plan, knew that like business was her track. And I was like, oh, I'm gonna like have a dance studio, but I didn't connect that to actually being in business.

Um, and so when I was thinking about like, how did I accidentally. Run companies, um, or even end up on this route. I mean, it goes back to like very young, like grade school. So I grew up in Maine and, uh, like your cliche, not a log cabin in the middle of the woods, but pretty close. Um, I was the only kid on the, it was like a dirt road that like ended in the lake.

Um, so very, very isolated. And I was the only kid on the road, um, at that time when I was growing up. And so I was the one that was always doing the dog walking, the dog sitting the cats sitting. When there were babies born, like I was the babysitter on the road. Like I just kind of fell in not quite naturally. And, let's see, I think it was summer after I turned 16.

My parents were like, could you get a job? Um, like a, like a real one, quote, unquote. And so, um, my friend who went into business, uh, got me a, a job, um, working as a receptionist at Charlie's Toyota in Zion, in Augusta, Maine. Um, so I was like answering calls for Toyota. That was my first official job. And, um, I think I quit about six months in.

I was like, yeah, this isn't for me. When I wasn't answering phones, I was like doing filing and you sit in like their tire room and so I would like go home smelling like tires for filing and it, it just wasn't my thing. Um, so. I quit and my parents were like, what are you gonna do? And I was like, I'm gonna teach dance and small town perks, put a little like, I don't know, four by four ad in the local newspaper and was like dance lessons in the summer.

And that's what I did like for Most of High School. Um, and then, I was gonna have miss school dance, like when I took website design back in like the early two thousands. So like not pretty website design by today's standards. Um, like I made Miss Molly's school of dance like website. Um, so that was always kind of there.

Um, and I think, again, my parents. When I was like, yeah, I'm gonna just like have a studio. I, I don't need to go to college. Um, they were like, could you like maybe just go to college, take like a business math class or something. Um, and then once I got into college, like I think I kind of got hooked on it and um, ended up getting two master's degrees and so like, went through that, that, um, academic journey.

And have now circled back to after a 10 year career in higher ed, circled back to being a full-time freelancer entrepreneur. Um, and I guess the other one that I'll just, other origin story that I'll run parallel to this is like how I ended up with a real interest in interdisciplinary arts. Like I've always been interested in all kinds of arts, visual and performing, um, but I think it was in high school.

No, I can actually trace this back. I think I told this story, um, watching Xanadu growing up. So there's the scene where I don't remember, the actors names, um, like one wants a bandstand in this like music hall and the other's like, no, no, no, it's gotta be like eighties electronic. And then in the scene they merged the two, um, dance styles as well as the.

music forms and I, it was on VHS, so I had to like rewind it and watch it over again and then like hit rewind, wait for it to go back and I would, I'd watch that scene over and over again. And I think there's something about that visual merging of forms that I found really interesting. And then in high school when, sorry, you know, cuz you're supposed to like look at colleges and, you know, plan your future or whatever.

Um, I had two goals. I wanted to stay in Maine and I wanted to major dance, and I couldn't do that. And so I started looking at theater programs cuz' they were close. And, um, I ended up majoring in theater, which again, I first, my first advising appointment in college was with Dr. Sandra Hardy. Um, She, like my first conversation was, I don't wanna be a theater major.

And she was like, just your classic New Yorker in the middle of Maine doing, um, running Or being a part of that theater program. And, um, she's like, give it a semester. And I was like, okay, that feels reasonable. And I'm actually really glad I stayed with theater and all of that. But what I would do is like try to sneak dance into my theater.

So like in a directing class, it was like, cool, I'm gonna just have like a 10 minute dance break in the middle of this show. And I think that sneaking the art I wanted into the art that I had to do was how I continued pushing the, um, continued to explore the interdisciplinary nature of it all, and those, those are the clues that I'm gonna share today at least.

Yeah. Thanks for holding space, Hannah.

Hannah: Of course. Awesome. Thank you, Molly, for sharing that. That's so awesome. Uh, for if it's okay if I respond.

Molly: Yeah, please do.

Hannah: Um, so. As someone who has seen you from afar from my freshman year of college, um, and you as my professor, I've always just been curious about how you had gotten into the space of, um, of being a dance professor and, um, what I had you first was for, uh, somatics and, and yoga.

So I feel like I've gotten to see a lot of different sides of you. So it was really cool to get to hear that story for the first time about your background. That's so awesome.

Molly: Yeah. Thank you. Yeah. I guess like that's a just context for our listeners is that's how we overlapped was Yeah. Um, when I was teaching and you were a student.

Mm-hmm. . . Well, it's your freshman. I was trying to think of this the other day. I don't remember why. Was it 2017? 2018?

Hannah: Yeah. So it was 2017, fall, 2018. Spring. So I had you 2017 fall for, um, somatics.

Molly: Cool. Okay. Yeah. Gosh. Feels long ago. Okay.

Hannah: It felt, feels forever ago for me too

Molly: Yeah.

Hannah: Yeah. Awesome. So now we're gonna get into the creative process and behind the scenes of the most recent projects you're working on with GBC.

Um, now with almost any creative pursuits, the final product, project performance, all of it. , it's just sharing a tiny part of the work with audiences. So much time and energy happens well before audience are aware of a project, and we wanna take some space to share about our creative processes as individuals and within the company.

So, Molly, is there any insight you can give us, um, from your point of view about our projects or how you were inspired for this season?

Molly: Yeah. Um, this season I feel like things have gotten really, Solid is the word I'm gonna toss out. I'm not sure that's really the one I want, but Yeah. Um, become clear. I don't know something.

I mean, it's also, okay, so Grey Box Collective has been around for seven seasons, so seven years and, um, I mean, half of those years have been spent adapting to Covid and the pandemic, and so, navigating the majority of the time when most companies are gaining traction through a pandemic has, has been really, um, interesting.

And I think it just expedited like we would've gotten here eventually. And I think this just expedited things. Um, . So, I mean, the projects, the way that the seasons are going to, at least at this time of recording move forward is basically four projects per season. And, um, keeping the, the film digital aspect in.

Um, so having a film version of whatever the focus is or the theme is for that season, having our in-person performance, like, I feel like that's the, that's the root, that is the, the thing. Grey Box Collective was created around, so that's gonna stay. And then the two other projects that I think of. Made their place, um, within the company has been the podcast as well as the coloring book.

Um, and so this season we're doing two seasons of, okay, wait, how do I say this? This season of like Grey Box Collective. We're doing two seasons of Any Other, Anythings just as kind of playing catch up. Um, but most seasons will, most Grey Box. Collective seasons will have one, um, season of Any Other Anythings.

And what I enjoy about that is it really gives like this 50/50 to the process and the products, for lack of another way to say it, right now, uh, we, where we have the film and the performance that's in person, that's like the, the things that we create. And now we have these two other projects of the coloring book.

That's also an activity book, and then the podcast to talk more about the process. And it's the process that I get really excited about. Like the performance is great and the release of the film is great and it's like just so little compared to all that we put into it, you know? So, yeah. I don't know if I actually answered your questions.

Would you like me to unpack anything more specific in that?

Hannah: No, I think you . I think you answered the question. That's awesome. Um, So I guess, I guess I'd like to dive deep more into, um, the rehearsal space, um, and your role as the facilitator and the director in the rehearsal space. So, um, For any aspiring directors or um, rehearsal directors out there, what is something that you find to be effective when you're running a group of creatives where everything is spontaneous in the moment, things can change.

What are things that you look for that you want them to hold onto and develop?

Molly: Ooh. Um, that's a dozy of a question.

Hannah: I'm sorry.

Molly: No, that's good. Um, could you, could you say it for me one more time?

Hannah: I'll try .

Molly: Okay.

Hannah: Um, so for anyone aspiring to be a rehearsal director for any, um, type of, I don't wanna call it improvisational work, but definitely within our rehearsals, it is very improvisational.

What are tools that you use as a director to identify things that are effective for what you're trying to portray in, in a...

Molly: mm-hmm. . Yeah. I've got some responses. I have no idea if they're answers, although I've been getting more towards saying like, I don't have answers, I have opinions and I have questions, so,

Hannah: Okay, Yeah. I love that.

Molly: Okay. Um, so I think one of the things is go, um, going big picture for a moment of, I think especially like for us coming from the like studio dance world, it's like, oh, I hear a song and I can see the dance, and that's what it's gonna be on stage, right? Like, there's this vision and we're gonna put it up there.

Um, that is not how I, I mean I've done that before, but I'm at a place now where it's more like, what do I wanna spark conversation about? Um, and that is the. Part of like what, what each episode is going to also include. Um, so I think of it more as like planting a seed and saying like, who wants to like water this and care for this with me?

Um, so that's kind of the approach. And I think even just entering with that, it's a very different energy. Um, as opposed to like, here's the vision and we're all gonna go towards it. It's okay, here's this thing that we're all gonna see grow. And then, um, I think in the moment for these rehearsals, uh, a lot of like teasing things out for me, um, teasing things out and also being open to those serendipitous moments that like you could not choreograph like those gorgeous moments in, whether that's a rehearsal or in a show where it's like, Like, yes.

Like that is just it. There's a presence that, um, that time and space and like all the, the stars aligned or whatever cliche you wanna toss in there, um, that led to that. Um, but I think the, the teasing things out is, is one of the things that's been really important for me more recently. Um, and teasing out and like creating space, um, because one of the things that we do is a very short rehearsal process and development process.

And, um, I talk about this a lot with trauma-informed creative practices and seeing it now kind of ooze into the organization of the, as a whole is, um, the need for space. Um, and not necessarily. Timing wise, like it's not necessarily slowing down, it's just having those like kind of bursts and letting things settle and the separation, um, oh, what are the words I'm looking for?

Kind of the separation of like a lot of little things, um, like content versus form. Like where we are right now in the process is like, does the form itself work like flocking or follow the leader, right? Like, does the form itself work with this group before we start to like muck it up with whatever kind of content we're tossing into it?

Um, so that like separation of things I think is really important. Um, even the separation of like,

The development process. Um, and some of this comes from working with Tomas Stanton of like the editor and the creator. Like they do not hang out well together, right? Like if you're trying to edit as you're creating, it's really gonna slow the process down. So can we really just hold space to create. and generate.

And then we'll choose later when we're in a different head space and it's like you can like put the other hat on or whatever, um, of what actually serves the piece as a whole.

And so yeah, it's that teasing apart and creating space and also knowing, like part of that teasing apart is, um, Like in trauma-informed creative practices.

I talk about, uh, group dynamics and how groups develop. There's going to be like this place where we kind of rumble with each other, and it doesn't have to be like this huge conflict or anything, but it's, it's like, okay, let me figure out my role in this space. Figure out everyone else's role in this space.

How are we going to, to come together to, to create some things.

Hannah: Yeah. That's so, that's so, that's so cool.

Molly: Can I ask you a question, hearing that now?

Hannah: Yes.

Molly: Okay.

Hannah: Of course.

Molly: Okay. Okay. So now I just like, that's my outside view, right? As I often will ask, how's that on the inside? Like, do you sense that on the inside when you, uh... Hannah: As a, in, in rehearsal space?

Molly: Yeah.

Hannah: Yeah. Um, I feel.

I feel like, because I, in my brain I see you as an extremely intellectual person that for me, I feel like a lot of things that we do might, might be deeper in my brain than maybe. You know, how I take things. And I think like very, very deeply about them. And I think that there's some like seven layered thing, but really it's just an extending of the arm.

That's how I think. Mm-hmm. . Um, and I'm always kind of expecting that you. Something similar to that, because I know that you're so intellectual. Um, but I can still see, um, for you that the generating is so essential for it to become, go from the vision to an ownership within everyone with GBC. And so hearing you explain it verbally, I definitely can go back and think.

Okay. That makes a lot of sense. Um, as we're working that she, like you mentioned once before, that you don't have this end goal, this dream thing that you wanted to look like at the end. That it's something we're discovering as we go. And me and my, my, um, studio growing up brain is like, um, what , how, how do you not.

You know, but, um, I think that the beauty of it is that it's something that we share responsibility and ownership for by the generation, the generating pro process that.

Molly:  mm-hmm. Yeah. Very much. Um, cool. Thank you.

Hannah: Yeah.

Molly: Um, like the two kind of sayings that I think I hold onto is, um, like we discover the way on the way.

Hannah: Yeah. Okay I love that.

Molly: Yeah. Um, and then like the more panicky version of that is like building the plane while flying it. Um mm-hmm. . . Yeah. I like the discover the way on the way.

Hannah: Yeah.

Molly: Doesn't invoke in anxiety.

Hannah: That feels beautiful. .

Molly: Right, right.

Hannah: Yeah. awesome. All right. So we've reached the final segment of our episode, uh, where we lean into our title of Any Other Anythings, any other anythings was a phrase that was used in our rehearsals that was essentially a last call for topics to be brought up before we closed out rehearsal.

Um, so I'm refraining that slightly here to ask you if there's anything you wanna spark a conversation about.

Molly: I had mentioned beforehand, like, I'm pretty open, um, especially. Season four of Any Other Anythings is going to be mostly my voice. So, yeah, I don't know. What would you like to spark a conversation about?

Is there anything as, as the ramblings have happened that you wanna dig into more? Definitely for me,

Hannah: Definitely for me. So, because I had you as my freshman year professor. You're one of the first professors I had. Um, and you've been someone in, um, my life, you know this, that I've looked up to, and I really appreciate you and I've learned so much from you.

And I feel like. Um, what you've taught me has really shaped me into who I am as an educator now. Um, so I was curious if there's anyone in your life that you can think of that has been that person for you before you have become this serial entrepreneur,

Molly: Oh, that's, that's tricky. Um, I'll also say just like thinking of.

When you, what. Like when we first overlapped, so 2017.

Hannah: Mm-hmm.

Molly: Um, I was still figuring out a lot of the stuff that I talk about today.

Hannah: Okay.

Molly: So like you've also think like, I think about like 2017 somatics. Um, I feel like there is a shift in 2018 of how I taught. and I feel like there's a massive shift generally for me in 2018.

Um, but I, I think you've also seen an evolution or experienced this evolution of how I talk about things. Yeah. Um, around Trauma-Informed Creative Practices. And I don't think, I would say I formally brought Trauma-Informed Creative Practices into a classroom until 2018.

Hannah: Yeah. I would, I would say that's accurate too. Yeah.

Molly: Yeah. Yeah. Cool. Um, yeah, so in terms of. Like who is who, like who shaped me in? In that, that kind of journey. Um, I feel like there like, um, there isn't one person. Um, it's definitely been kind of eclectic, which is like how I do everything. Uh, a little bit of this, little bit of that. Um, and very often for me it's general movements.

Um, That shaped me. Um, so like my shift towards.

My shift towards like, um, focusing on mobility work and like that kind of thing. Like I saw that kind of movement rise up within the fitness industry and it was like, Ooh, this is really important. Like, how is that going to shape me physically having practice that more and in turn, how does that shape like everything else that I do?

Um, I mean, I mentioned like Sandra Hardy, um, Dr. Sandra Hardy, who. Did I, who did I talk to? Maybe I brought this up, um, already in a podcast, but like my thesis in my capstone in undergrad, um, she, she didn't feel like doing her, um, assigned reader's theater time slot. So she just like gave me that time slot for her, um, for my thesis.

So it was like really easy to get a, have a full evening length performance because, She did that. Um, and yeah, I think it's like the opportunities that, um, really came forward. And one is also, um, Terry Danielly. Um, what Y'all don't know about me, I know I got my reputation as like the Somatics teacher and like very like loosey goosey, um, I'm a jazz-erina on the inside, um mm-hmm.

And so, um, Terry. And I, um, he, Terry invited me to co choreograph a evening length ballet to Contemporary Ballet, to Carmina Barona, um, at Robinson Ballet in 2009, I think. So, um, to like co-choreograph with a, a professor, um, was really cool in undergrad and like to do an evening length work. That's my first real introduction to evening length work.

So just like being a part of that creative process and seeing how to structure it was really, um, important. Um, and then I'll, I'll also add, like, my people are always like surprised to hear this, but um, so my master's in higher education program, I use that every single day, even though I'm not in high ed anymore.

Um, so it's a long title. The long, the easier way to say it is like it's an educational psychology and um, I use that all the time, that Body of Knowledge. And so, um, Susan Gardner and Elizabeth Allen, like, they definitely shaped how I engage. Um, and even how, I talked about this with like my. Committee for my MFA thesis.

Um, they, I, one of 'em asked me once, like, how do I run a rehearsal and what's my approach? Because it's very different than what they were seeing with other choreographers. And I think it comes from my, my higher ed work, um, that educational psychology body of, body of knowledge. Um, yeah, because. Why not?

Like, I don't, I'm very critical of like how rehearsals are run. Um, and I think it's because I have that kind of, yeah, that, that wisdom. Um, which also like, I think vice versa, they'd probably say like, I use it in very different ways. Um, but it's that application that's really important and really shapes a lot of what I, how I do things.

So. Which goes back to the interdisciplinary thing, brought it around. It's not quite Xanadu, but it works.

Hannah: But it's pretty darn close. .

Molly: Yeah.

Hannah: Wow. That's so, that's so cool. Um, yeah. Wow.

Molly: That is a journey of an answer.

Hannah: It is. But, but I feel like it really speaks to, um, to you and how I've, um, seen like, change just in the time that I've known you as well.

Just seeing how, um, . And I think even now, even five, 10 years from now, it probably will be different than how it is today. And I think that's one thing that's really powerful is that understanding that even when you are the rehearsal director or you are the person that's in charge of the things, that the way it is now isn't always effective 10 years from now that things are supposed to change and adapt with the people that you have and the world you live in.

Molly: Yes. So yes, I've been thinking a lot about. Investing in the evolution of ourselves, each other, a company like, like that's something that like investing in an evolution. Yeah. Like it's not just growth, it's not Right. It's not just development. It's like no, no, no. There's like energy going into it. Yeah. Um, and I think.

So the arts were hit hard during covid education was hit hard during Covid. Um, I think, well, I have a lot of thoughts, but I am, curious. Um, as someone who, like you're, you graduated during a pandemic. Yeah. You got into dance,. Well, like you did your, um, What's your teaching thing?

Hannah: Student teaching.

Molly: Thank you. Yeah. Um, your, your teaching thing, , um, before you graduated. I'm curious like what's your experience and what do you see as like where the arts and where education, dance, et cetera, is going? .

Hannah: That's a, that's a good question because I think about that a lot. Um, because in the education world, there's a lot of blame and a lot of frustration with students, um, by saying, oh, well, it's the covid generation.

They don't wanna work hard, they don't wanna do things. Um, and I think that what the problem is, is they don't know how to fall in love with things anymore. And so I feel like what my hope and my goal is not to raise a generation of studio competitive dancers. My hope and my goal is to. To raise a group of students that love to dance, that love to perform, that love to work together as a team.

Um, and I think that it's so easy for colleagues in other like high schools to be like, well, they have a better dance program, but my girls can turn better. That's not at all my hope, um, especially because I, um, teach in a, in a low income area., where this is their only chance to get the arts. Um, and my hope and my goal is to teach them the richness and the impact the arts will have on their life forever.

Um, cuz a lot of them are immediately gonna go into the workforce and so a lot of them might lose touch with the art. With the arts. Um, and I think the only thing that got me through the pandemic for, for me was the arts, was dance, was theater, was music, um, and I grew up doing all three. So without having, having those to help me through, um, I don't know if I would be functioning, to be perfectly honest. Um, and I am hoping that I can teach students how to use the arts as almost a, a coping mechanism, for lack of a better word, of this is how we can find healing in our hurts, or this is how we can express ourselves. Um, so I definitely, Had to lose sight of my pride of wanting to be the best.

Um, that is the number one thing that Covid has taught me because I didn't go into college being the best dancer at all. I was the worst by far. Um, but I think I loved it the most. Um, and so I think that's the difference is I loved it the most and so I, I had, I had dance teachers growing up that helped me love it.

And so I wanna be that for, for my kids, that they don't have to be the best. They just have to love it.

Molly: Yeah. That's freaking gorgeous.

Molly: Uh, and what's also like making me think about is like, so the studio that I grew up in, rural Maine. Mm-hmm. not a lot of options. It was either you go to this studio and you become a competitive dancer and yes, you will be good. And yes, you could like climb the ladder of whatever you want to in the field, or you go to this other studio and you learn to love dance.

Right. And so I went to the one where I learned to love dance. Me too. Well, I mean, my parents put the one where I would like to live. Yeah. Same. Yeah. . Yeah. Mm-hmm. . Um, but yeah, I think it's, um, It's really inter, I mean like Sir Ken Robinson's work and like, you know, we just, you have to like be good at it.

It's like, no, you, you gotta enjoy it.

Hannah: Right.

Molly: And then you'll stick with it long enough that you probably will be quite good at it.

Hannah: Great. Yeah. definitely.

Molly: But it doesn't work the other way I don't think.

Hannah: No, it doesn't.

Molly: Yeah. Yeah. Hmm. That's great. Thank you.

Hannah: Thank you. Thank you for asking me.

Molly: Yeah. . Um, would you like to do any other questions?

Did you have other questions?

Hannah: I had one last one. Okay. Um, so you've kind of touched on this just a little bit, so we're moving a little bit back to GBC. Um, so in my last year, GCU, one of my professors talked to us about our druthers. Like what is your, if you had no budget, if you had no limits, if you had nothing to stop you, what is your goal?

What is, what is the hope? So I'm curious, what are your druthers for GBC?

Molly: Oh, um,

What are my druthers?

Hannah: And feel free to be as vague as you'd like, just because I know that you like to discover as it comes.

Molly: I do, I do like to discover the way on the way, but I will also say like, I feel like I have a much clearer vision, um, after the past two years. Um, and like. Cool. I'm gonna drop an F-bomb.

So if anyone's listening and you would like to mute , that would be the time to do so. Um, I've kind of reached this point of like, fuck the starving artist archetype. Um, and like. Not being like super aggressive about it, just like I'm over it. Right? Um, and. . And I think there's a lot of language around like abundance and like, ooh, we're gonna have like an abundance of all these things.

Like I don't need an abundance, I just need enough.

Hannah: Right. Yeah.

Molly: Um, and I, I want to, to have a, a space where like, everyone who's a part of Grey Box Collective has enough. And then it, it's really shared. Um, yeah. It's, it's just. This shared community where there is enough and there, like that scarcity mindset does not need to exist.

Um, and it's more about that and trusting that the art will follow. Um, you know, like I, I, I think about the process. I think about the products and I think about the organization as a whole. Um, and I, I think. I think I've talked about before, like standing in the integrity of the work, um, being proud of the work that we do.

Um, I also have thought about for a while, like, and maybe this kind of ties into your like kind of mission with your, with your students. Um, I've thought about for a while. I'd rather be worse knowing than well known. Yeah. Uh, and. I feel like, like cool worth knowing. Check. Um, now I'd like that well known part so that the funds can come in and that we can really like, move forward with, with a pretty epic vision.

Um, yeah. and like I see like, you know, the cool, cool sets and all that kind of stuff. I, I don't think, like, I'm not really interested in the spectacle. Um, yeah. Because unless like the budget allows for everyone to have enough and then we can add spectacle. Mm-hmm. Um, but that I think needs to be the priority.

Um, and I've been thinking a lot about like, just like allowing humans to be in like a performance space and like showing humans. Doing beautiful things that humans do as opposed to like the performer with the leg this high and this many turns and, you know, like a very like, quantitative approach. Um, yeah.

I'm gonna be thinking about this question for a while. Cool. .

Hannah: Yay. Yay.

Molly: So yeah, good questions.

Hannah: Thank you. Do you have any other anythings Molly?

Molly: No, just that like, well, I guess I don't have any other anythings. I do, I'm re I'm prepared for checkout.

Hannah: Mm-hmm.

Molly: I feel, I think I feel good for, for any other anythings. Do you have any other anythings?

Hannah: I do not. Okay. I feel, I feel very content.

Molly: Cool. Cool.

Hannah: Awesome. All right, well, we've reached the end of our episode, so we're gonna wrap this out with the checkout. Um, Molly, how are you doing and what are you thinking about?

Molly: I am doing really well. Um, I think a lot of interactions lately have been quite draining.

So like, thank you for like a lovely one-on-one interaction that like brought some energy back in. Um, that was great. Um, what am I thinking about? I mean, my druthers, um, . Cool. I'll carry that one with me, like your random text, like, ah, I got it. Um. Yeah, I'm also just thinking of like, and as soon as I say it, it's gonna like crumble.

But um, like my cat normally comes out about 3:30 to demand dinner and that hasn't happened. And I just feel like lucky for that moment cuz I was like, oh man, we're gonna have to like pause and then like start and so that's so funny. Low key stress about like the cat interrupting this. So, yeah, that's, that's where I'm at.

That's what I'm thinking about, how about you? Um,

Hannah: Yeah, like you said, I'm feeling very, um, full is the word I'm thinking of. I feel filled. I feel, um, I feel like I've been kind of running on empty and so having a fulfilling conversation is, um, always fills me up. Me as an extrovert, talking with people fills me up a lot.

Um, but not talking because I have to. talking because I enjoy it. So thank you for that, Molly. This, this was really, this was awesome and I love getting to know about you. Um, little obsessed with you. So . All right. Um, so yeah, that's the end of episode 11.

Molly:  Yes, that's it. Um, so. For listeners, um, this is the last interview.

We've, we've come full circle from everyone passing, um, hosting responsibilities. So it's back to me and I will see you listener in the next episode to just kind of wrap up the season. I haven't listened to any other episode. Um, so I might do a listen and then do wrap up. I don't know. We'll see. Um, but.

Shall we do?

Hannah: Yes, let's seal it. Okay.

Molly: We need a, okay. Are we gonna do a full one with a kick? Oh, we don't have to. I was just prepared. I just need to adjust as well. And the cat has now joined me, so.

Hannah: Oh, wonderful.

Molly: I'll avoid him. Awesome. Awesome. Thank you, Hannah.

Hannah: Thank you.

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