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S2 E4 with Micah & Hannah B.

Micah: What's up? Good day to everyone listening. Uh, this is Any Other, Anythings season two. And, uh, I am here with Hannah B uh, if you wanna just give a quick intro. Say hi to the world, and introduce yourself. Um, yeah, how are you doing?

Hannah B: I'm doing great. Hey, y'all. Um, I'm Hannah. Uh, Hannah. B to be specific, um, I just, this is my second season with Grey Box and I'm just so excited to be a part of Any Other Anythings.

Micah: Awesome. Sweet, sweet, sweet. So you said the second season. I am super curious, like how did you get introduced to Grey Box Collective? Uh, what was that experience like? How have you enjoyed it? So,

Hannah B: Yeah, so Molly, um, was actually my professor in college and I was obsessed with everything she did and I worked every, I just worked so hard so I could be in her pieces.

Um, cause I was a dance major and she did dance pieces about the parasympathetic system and I fell in love with her process and I just kept a connection with her and she reached out to me and said if I was interested, and I said, anything you do, Molly, I

wanna. Absolutely love that. So, can you remind me what was the show, uh, that you did first?

Micah: Uh, now that this is your second season with Grey Box Collective?

Hannah B: Yeah. So my first show was PAUSE.

Micah: yeah. Yeah. So you were part of, the live group then. I know I was on the digital side of things. Mm-hmm. , which is mm-hmm. crazy to think about. That's, that's super cool though. Okay. That's awesome.

Um, and I remember watching the, the playback of that and it, it was such a cool experience overall. . Um, yeah, I, I wondered like, what was that like for you, like working with a digital element? I know there wasn't too much bridging in that the sort of creative processes themselves were sort of running, uh, parallel to one another.

Um, but it was still kind of a unique experience. Um, uh, I'm curious as to like what your perspective was being on the live side of things.

Hannah B: Right. So we did everything collabo. Collaboratively, just like you guys did digitally. And my favorite part was actually watching what you guys did because that inspired me and the choices that I made when we did the live version.

So how it works is we create a score. So we follow each section of pause and what we wanted to address in each section. So basically growth and heartache and hurt in all the different stages of that. And so we talked about the feelings, the impact it has on your life, personal stories. And then we aligned with movement structure, and.

Um, body posture and how it feels internally and how that can move externally. And we had these giant like poles that were filled with lights and they changed color. And that greatly influenced my movement personally because it aligned with each section of growth and how you can go from loss and hurt and pain to moving on and.

Well, not moving on, but you know what I mean? Growing and getting that impact of what had happened to growing into something else.

Micah: No, I, I love that. Gotta be frank with you. I know. We were, it's really funny thinking back on that experience because on the digital side of things, we were a little bit jealous of you guys.

Uh, like light sticks, , those were super cool. Um, I felt like a Jedi. Yeah. It was really dope. Right? Um, I, I love that, uh, that whole, uh, integration, and we were trying to figure. Oh, can we do that with a household item or anything like that? But it became a little too convoluted, so we ended up ex-accessing that, um, aspect when it came to, uh, the digital side of it.

But I do love just that idea, and I think that was the intention of that whole process, was to kind of bridge the gap between the live experience versus the digitally curated side of things. Mm-hmm. . Um, which is honestly so much fun, uh, to kind of just be a part of that creative process as a whole. Yeah, I, I, I do kinda wonder, like, given that, you know, the experience of Pause itself was really kind of focusing on exactly what you said, finding growth and finding the next steps beyond whatever the loss, the hurt, the trauma, whatever that experience that all of us have to some degree experienced.

Um, mm-hmm. , uh, I, I'm curious as to like, how working in a trauma-informed space has really, I mean, maybe either altered your perception of the experience or, um, how, how the Grey Box Collective approach, uh, I guess, influenced you as an artist, if that makes sense.

Hannah B: Right. So, What was really interesting was we got to share specific circumstances in our own lives with each other, and it helped walking through the different stages of grief.

Grief as a mover, because I realized that it's not a step-by-step process. You're gonna go backward, you're gonna go forwards, you're gonna start all over. And that was really impactful and powerful for me, just as a human, not even as a, a mover or as part of, um, Grey Box Collective. Hmm. I was just able to become more aware that I don't have to be perfect and I don't have to solve my own grief.

That's not a thing. We think we have to do that. That doesn't exist. Yeah.

Micah: Yeah. Yeah, that's such a good point. I feel like there is a really heavy emphasis sometimes on like, oh, I don't wanna be a burden on anyone, or, I don't want to, you know, I don't wanna be, I don't wanna add to like, everybody's got their own issues, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

And like, it's like being a, like allowing ourselves to be loved. I think as much as we preach self-love that. To like, let your family support you. Let your friends support. Yes. You let the people who matter in your life. Be someone who you can lean on, um, and allow yourself to exactly what you said, step back every once in a while or move forward if you're ready to move forward.

Mm-hmm. . Um, but really all at your own pace, uh, I think is such an important part. And yeah, you're right. It goes beyond, um, just our artistic experiences, but it really does help us. Shed new light or at least a different perspective on just our day-to-day being, um, which is, which is awesome to, to kind of think about.

Um, yeah. I love that. I love that. Um, I can't remember, did you guys end up doing, a talkback for, uh, the show after PAUSE?

Hannah B: So we did, we did a talkback for, I believe, both at Mesa Arts Center and at St. Meadows. Um, the talkback at Mesa Arts Center. Was incredible. It was insane. There was a woman there who had talked about losing her sister, um, and she had just died.

Wow. Literally the week or two before. And how that experience for her was so cathartic and how there was an obvious path that. She could or could not take it. It was up to her. Mm. Um, and we had people there, I forget the name of the group. Uh, I feel terrible for forgetting, but there were these, um, group of people that were there that work closely with Grey Box Collective.

Mm-hmm. that, um, they offered trauma-informed therapy and work with people who are in those situations, and she was able to get help immediately. Right after she spoke, there was someone there for her. And, um, there were some questions like, how did you do this? Talk to us about the light pole. Um, but. That story has changed my life forever.

Micah: Truly. Yeah. Yeah. That's honestly really, really beautiful to hear and to kind of like think about is because there's been sometimes, as an artist myself, where I've just wondered, I'm like, man, am I preaching to the choir with all this work that I'm doing? Is it just a bunch of people that are coming who already know what to do and et cetera

Sometimes I feel like this art is just going out there to people who. Not necessarily don't need it, but um, are already empathetic towards it and we're not changing any lives or we're not doing anything. But then hearing things like this, like you kind of are reminded that even if it feels like it's a one in a-million chance that these things happen, they still do happen.

Um, and just because we don't see it sometimes, it's literally just us planting the seed. Uh, cuz we talked about the idea of growth, right? So maybe they're not ready to take that step forward yet, but if they were able to share in this experience with. Maybe, uh, later down the road when they're ready, they can think back on the experience and, you know, progress from that.

Uh, which is honestly such, a beautiful sentiment. And I thank you for sharing that. That's really cool to hear and, and think about. Um, Personal, like, kind of curious question, are there any like, uh, experiences where you've kind of walked out of an artistic experience or a show, or whether it's in a rehearsal space or you just experiencing like a show that you went to go see or watch, um, or just, you know, maybe even just a piece of media that you've seen on TV or movie lately that you've kind of walked out with a new perspective or taken a next step from?

Hannah B: Oh, yes, I am the perfect audience member because I am always like, oh, I'm gonna self-reflect. I'm gonna change myself. I'm gonna grow. Um, so there's nothing that comes to mind specifically, but when I do go back and watch some things that I've taken part of and I reflect on where I was in that part of my life and how that piece had changed me for the butter or sometimes for.

because I was, um, a dance major in college, so I danced all the time, performed all the time. And there are always positives and negatives to being in the spotlight or people being watching you, analyzing you all the time. Mm-hmm. and I truly found healing in Grey Box Collective because when I was originally asked to do it, I said, Nope, I can't do it because I'm not as good as I was in college.

Hmm. Molly sat down with me and said, that's not what Grey Box is about. Grey Box Collective is about growing and about being where you're at and getting transformed by working with others, and that has been the biggest impact in my life. Truly was probably pause. Yeah. Um, we've all gone through loss and grief.

Yeah. And dancing through it. That was crazy. Very emotional.

Micah: Hmm. Yeah. Yeah. I, I do love that you mentioned that as well, because, uh, it's funny. Um, I actually got introduced to Grey Box through, um, someone that I was dating at the time. I had seen them in a show. Um, and I was like, wow, you're so riveting to watch.

Like I really enjoyed it. It was like kind of a show crush, I guess, but from an audience perspective. And I had mutual friends with her and uh, we got connected and I ended up auditioning for Grey Box through them. And um, uh, the interesting part is that I had never, I loved dance, I loved movement. Uh, I by no memes, consider myself a dancer.

I'm like, oh, I'm a mover. I'm a mover. You know that excuse that we say all the time. Um. But yeah, it was that same sort of encouragement from Molly where it's like, no, it's not a matter of like how many years of training you have or like what your technical skills are when it comes to this. It is about that growth.

It's about taking that one step back and stumbling two, two steps back and whatever the case may be. However, your journey is. It's, it's really, uh, a, true freedom of expression, which is honestly such a cool concept. Um, and I like the idea that this is, the focal point of Grey Box Collective being a trauma-informed creative practice.

Mm-hmm. , like, it's not a group of, you know, ballet dancers, you know what I mean? Like, don't get me wrong, the art is still beautiful. I love ballet. I'm gonna go see you on this winter. But like, still, it's, there's something to be said about making sure like, that your vision is seen through and that the focus.

Supporting artists, um, within a trauma-informed creative practice is like, so it's, it's a great, it's a great concept. I love that. I love that. Um, so okay, kind of backing up a little bit, looking a little more big picture, I know that you're into, uh, you know, uh, movement and such, I just kind of wanna get a better picture of like, you know, as an artist in, in your life right now.

What is it that you do? Like what fills up your day? Is it primarily art? Is it, do you have another day job that you're just like, oh yeah, I'm doing this to pay the bills? Or that you all maybe also really enjoy and love, like what's your big picture?

Hannah B: So I am actually a dance and theater teacher at two different high schools right now.

Okay. So I'm a traveling teacher. Um, so yeah, art is my whole life. Um, as a little kid I fell in love with theater. Mm-hmm. , I actually. Did a monologue in kindergarten for a competition. Wow. Yeah. Um, I like fell in love with it right away. Fell in love with dance and I've never stopped. So I, um, teach at two different high schools and I travel from, I travel like 20 minutes in the middle of the day to go teach theater at one school in the morning and then dance at one school in the afternoon.

Micah: Yeah, that's, that's honestly great. And okay, so what age range do you usually work in?

Hannah B: So I teach ninth through 12th. I teach the whole

Micah: the whole thing. Oh, oh my goodness. Wow. Yeah. That's high. School's tough. That's a tough group to, to handle. I definitely feel that. Um, do you feel like there is, uh, I guess like is there some push and pull between like having to teach and pour out this, uh, Understanding of art, I guess?

Mm-hmm. , um, versus actually engaging in it yourself or like, do you feel like there is some push and pull? Is there a balance that you feel like you have to find or achieve? Um, yeah. What's, what's your relationship there?

Hannah B: I definitely feel like I have to switch my mindset. So as a teacher I try to pull out every single thing they can give me, but they can provide how they can be artistic and creative.

Um, in the high school age, it is hard for them to be reflective emotionally and create their art in that way. So that's something I definitely lead up to. Um, right now it's just exploring what they can do cuz it is still the beginning of the school year. . So, and then when I'm a performer, it changes completely, um, because I'm the type of person that likes to support everyone around me and make what they're passionate about, shown.

Um, because I know with the Grey Box Collective, there's, it's a scorer. So I can always put my own personal touch to something. Um, I always know that I can bring in my own. Personal movement or thoughts or it's just a safe place where I can share. And I know some people when they first join or a season first starts, they don't necessarily share right away.

So I always try to make people comfortable and then make their voice heard. So I guess that's something I try to do in teaching too. But it is a little different as a performer because we have a show,

Micah: Awesome. Yeah, no, great. Um, I, I, I definitely do re I love, uh, by the way, what you said about, um, you know, the experience with Grey Box being sort of a, uh, a score where you can kind of layer in, um, extra bits of who we are, not only as individuals. That's something that I actually really enjoyed about when I first got started with Grey Box, uh, collective, where.

You know, Molly would kind of open up the floor to us to say like, Hey, what are your strengths? What do you feel like you're what, what do you love? Me? I'm a big fan of words. I'm a big fan of music. Uh, so that's what I tried to add. Um, and uh, it's really, really cool to kind of see a space where you're allowed to.

It really is a collaborative group in that sense, where it's like, uh, I mean, really true to form where each individual really does become integral to the devised work as a whole. Yes. Um, which is, which is, which is really cool. Uh, I know like we're so, I don't wanna say conditioned, but we're so used to as artists being directed or told what to do, or being the one who's directing or telling what people what to do.

You know what I mean? Versus. Every, everyone really having their 2 cents put in, um, really collectively informing the art itself. Um, instead of it being one person's story that's being told by a collective, um, which is such a different process, uh, and one that I've really, uh, come to love. Uh, so yeah. Yeah, that's, that's, that's really cool.

Um, another thing that I'm kind of curious about from your perspective is just like, what do you feel. I guess sustaining yourself as an artist kind of looks like, uh, I, I, for myself, I'm like, I, I like this image of like, as you pour out, obviously, um, our capacities shift and they differ from time to time.

Maybe you've sat a little bit too long and some stuff is evaporated and then we go to pour something out. Maybe it's, uh, a little less than expected, but like, when it comes to, again, kind of thinking about the balance, I know you talked about shifting mentality. What does it look like to, uh, like really continue being an artist? Uh, avoid burnout, if you will.

Hannah B: Oh yeah, So one of my favorite things to do is to get away. So I live in Arizona and so I like to go up to the mountains and just spend time in nature. That's something that really refuels me and that's also a place where you look at it, it looks different every time so you can find something new.

And I feel like that really fills me up as an artist. Um, the day today, however, I spend. My time in prayer is a lot. Mm-hmm. or, um, transitioning in meditation over, um, over the bible, over worship. Mm-hmm. music really fills me up. Um, I just definitely love it, that's what I need as a. As an artist to let myself get filled so I can pour over others.

Hmm. Because I feel like I'm called to do that. I feel like that is my job on this earth, is to fill others up with as much love as possible.

Micah: Yeah. Yeah. I love that. I love that. I, yeah, especially the idea of, um, I know for myself, I'm kind of in a similar boat. Uh, it's been a while. I will admit, since I've personally, uh, I do have a hard time, like taking the time to allow myself to be filled back up, uh, from time to time and, uh, for a while, uh, my faith similar to you was, was the way that I, um, uh, really tapped into that, uh, for lack of a better phrase.

Um, and I think that is important, whether it's, you know, your faith or your, um, You know, uh, anything really, uh, whether it's taking a stroll, getting away, going on a camping trip, uh, , you know, hanging out with friends, sometimes getting energy from other people, um, is also good. I think that's also part of, um, uh, Part of the experience that, uh, I felt in, in a, uh, in the spiritual setting where being around other people, I always say like, passion inspires passion, right?

Yes. And uh, my dad's a great example. He's a minister. And, um, one thing, yeah, I was like, there's one thing that I. Like feel like that whole idea of passion inspires passion comes from was me watching my dad growing up and like when he did minister, I was like, oh my goodness. Like blown away by just the energy and the life that was just breathed into those moments.

And similar to how I got connected with Grey Box, I saw someone who I was really drawn to their passion for the art that they were doing. Um, and. And then I got introduced to this collective, and again, I, I continued this, uh, engagement because again, I see Molly's passion for this trauma-informed work. So like all of these through lines, just being, how do we connect to one another, uh, and seeing the genuine love for what we pour out.

I think that's something else. Right? Right. Like when we are pouring out, when we are sharing our art, when we. Doing whatever it is that we do. Um, is it something that we love? Because that makes so much more of a difference. I, I know that's such a, what, millennial thing to say, but like, you know, like, do what you love.

But I, I think there's a lot of, there's a lot of truth behind that, so, yeah. Yeah. Um, Cool. Yeah, I, uh, oh my goodness. I did it again. So one of the things we also like to check in on is just like, I, I guess we can use it as our checkout if we'd like, but the, one of the things that, uh, I'm curious about is like, if there is a warmup, a check-in, a grounding activity, a centering activity.

I know we spoke a lot about like, how do we refill, how do we recharge? I think when we enter these creative spaces, especially like what does it look like to. Kind of kick things off. Like I used to be a, a big proponent for like, oh, I just like to dive in. Like it's whatever. I'll just shrug it off mm-hmm.

and get into it. Um, but I've really come to appreciate being able to take your time as far as like stepping into this and really establishing that shift instead. Uh, do you have a favorite like a way to kind of check-in or get grounded, um, when you enter mm-hmm. an artistic space.

Hannah B: Um, this is gonna sound. Um, but I like to just lay on the ground in silence, for a minimum of like 60 seconds.

Yeah. Um, and I know that's something that a lot of movers can identify with. Hmm. Um, because it's kind of emptying your brain of all the other thoughts. Hmm. Um, transitioning yourself from my worker hat, my teacher hat, my, all the different things that I do in my life to becoming Okay. I'm now part of, so,

So changing your mindset to be I am here, I am present, I am nowhere else. So that's something I really have to do. So I like to spend time laying on the ground and physically failing my body, pressing into the ground that it sounds so simple, but it really changes my whole perspective and how I can function as an artist.

Otherwise, I'm thinking of a million things and I'm not.

Micah: Yeah. Yeah, that's, that's really awesome. I feel like a lot of times lately there's been a, a really heavy emphasis on like getting, like being heard, um, which I think is very important, but I think taking that. Almost the opposite approach of like really kind of letting the noise go and kind of a release almost.

Um, I really do, I really do love that. And yeah, I know, uh, yeah, I remember doing some, some exercises like that where it's bringing awareness to like where you're at, you're kind of firmly placed against the ground. You feel the cold, you know, the floor beneath your body. You like, you're, again, just finding that opportunity to really.

Stop worrying about how you're outwardly perceived, really kind of like internalize, um, everything. And from there you're able to kind of shift. And make a really clear distinction. So I love that. That's really cool. I love that. Um, sweet. So, I really appreciate like getting to know you. This is a lot of fun.

I know that. Yeah. We worked kind of parallel to one another and mm-hmm. , it's great to actually like kind of bridge that gap a little bit through this. Um, but as we always like to ask, or is the end of these things, are there any other, any things that you have.

Hannah B: Yeah, I think I just really quickly wanted to bring attention to all the extra parts of Grey Box Collective.

It's not extra, it's definitely needed, but I just really appreciate how every detail goes into our shows. Hmm. So. For the live portion of PAUSE. I don't know if you knew this, but even our costumes were dyed with natural things like avocado pits or like the skin of an onion. All the different things were from the earth are programs were meant to be planted, to be a plant too.

Everything was just about growing and changing, and that's something that I can't stop thinking about, to be honest. Um, it's been a year, maybe no six, six to eight months since we performed it, but I still think about how it's so intentional where we're striving to grow. Yeah. And it's just crazy how something you do so long ago, all the details, it just doesn't.

Yeah. Yeah. So all the, all the people who make it happen, I'm just honored to even get to work with them. That's one of the best parts about Grey Box Collective is I saw your work for the video. Mm-hmm. , you did incredible. You were amazing. And now I actually get to talk to you. So I just think it's so cool all the different talents and things that we have here at Grey Box Collective that make us different from others Yeah.

Other groups and different.

Micah: I love that. I love that. And the one thing I'd like to kind of hone in on what you said is the intentionality behind what, what's done. Mm-hmm. , it's like, it is really that idea. I think the reason that these things stick with people is that we see the intention. The intention is clear.

Yeah. Um, when that messaging is thorough and that through line is, is fully realized. Of course is gonna stick with you because the story, like things, weren't just there for the sake of being there. Everything had a purpose. Everything had a place. There was a reason this story was being told. There's a reason this collection of individuals came together to share, um, this experience with this audience that joined us.

So, uh, I think, yeah, the intentionality really does make a huge difference. Um, uh, when it comes to. What pieces of art and just works in general, stick with you, um, at the end of the day. So yeah. I love you. Love that. Thanks for that. I love it, yeah. Everything about it. Um, so yeah. Yeah. Um, cool. Any Other Anythings?

Hannah B: No, that's it. Just exciting to talk about it all.

Micah: Sweet. Well, cool. Um, with that, that's a wrap on this episode. It's been a pleasure speaking with you. And I guess we'll go ahead and wrap it up.

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