Friday, September 26, 2008

The First Spiral Dance

After seeing the video clip of Spiral Dances on YouTube and being told by Chas that he couldn't identify me in clips of the first one in 1979, I found this still from the same event. I don't know who shot it: I suspect it may have been Kevyn Lutton. Here you can see me on the right (second person in, about a third of the way down from top of the photo), wearing a velvet and brocade robe and leaning back a bit because Deirdre's on my hip, but you can't really see her, or her bald father, the late Rod Wolfer. I think the woman in the right foreground is Glenn Turner.

The dancer in the big white Maiden mask in the video is Diane Baker, co-author of Circle Round. The three goddess masks were made by Medea Maquis and weighed a ton. They are now in a private collection. The Elements masks, which you can't see but are also big heavy suckers, were made by Eleanor Myers.* They were clay and I think that over the years all of them have broken.

I remember Selene Kumin Vega dancing one of the goddesses. Forgive my senior mind for not recalling exactly which one -- Mother, I think. It was a long time ago. Selene is slender and graceful. She choreographed the Goddess dance at one Spiral Dance (at the SF Women's Building) in which I dance one of three crones (the late Judy Foster being another). Selene has the ability to bring out the best in people. She never made me, who's not much of a dancer, feel clumsy or awkward, just magical. Or "priestessly," if you will.

* If anyone knows Eleanor's current whereabouts, I would dearly love to know too. Please contact me at if you have any information.


Pitch313 said...

Even though it's a old appearing photo, it shows us just how new many of the core/key events supporting Neo-Pagan Craft actually are. It's a new movement, still growing in energy, encompassed by the ongoing lifetimes of many of its participants.

FWIW, I think that Glenn Turner's the one in the front, too.

Anonymous said...

Now I see you! I will have to look at the video again.

Lodestone and Ladys Mantle said...

Beautiful pic. Remembering my first Spiral Dance was more of sleeves-on-fire affair :P

Selene Kumin Vega, Ph.D. said...

Oh my gosh, I just discovered this post! (I googled myself with the "Kumin" in the middle, which I'm returning to). I actually did not dance one of the goddesses (that's why you couldn't remember which!) - I was one of three "muses," wearing a red sari wrapped in a non-sari way, and a wonderful red headdress - that's me in the middle, just to the left in the photo of where you were. I led the spiral dance that first year.