A sung-poem, a song, and a poem. With video projection, singing bowls, beats. My goal was to make one continuous multimedia performance piece threading these songs and poems together.
1. Traveler's Ode 2. Break the Silence 3. The Fragments
With additional sounds by Barry Brusseau. Visuals by Kyle Macdonald and Roland Dahwen Wu (Patua Films).
Dao Strom @ Reed College - Visiting Writers Series 2016
China Girl (De-oriented)
Cover of "China Girl" song by David Bowie & Iggy Pop. Performed at Reed College Visiting Writers Series, Fall 2016.
Here's my statement about this song:
"The narrative angle of the song presumes the silence of the object in the song — a character who is object of affection as well as acquisition: she excites and calms and complicates the narrator. And he is complicated also because he is self-aware—of his own potential to abuse power, and also his inability to refuse it: his is an unsettling portrait of complicity and conscience. Popular interpretations call the song a “critique” of colonialism or a statement on racism, the singer’s identification with an “Orientalist” racist tendency twisting us (the listeners) up in troubling implication. But in this is again implicit that the listener must not be anyone like the woman in the song: her presence in the song creates, ironically, a requisite absence; her silence. My take on the song comes out of this silence."
China Girl (De-oriented) @ Reed Visiting Writers Series
A video projection + essay/poem, excerpted from We Were Meant To Be a Gentle People.
The Vietnamese-voice version of this essay was translated and recorded by Nhã Thuyên. A bilingual print version was published by AJAR Press in their "Nuoc | Water | Country" Issue 4 (2016).
The visual poem was performed first on 10.23.2015 at "All Fines Forgiven" presented by Late Night Library, at Clinton Street Theater, Portland OR.
The Fragments (Vietnamese) / (read by Nha Thuyen)
The Fragments (English version) / (read by Dao Strom)
Song: Dao Strom Guitar: Barry Brusseau Bass: William Joersz
5/12/15 @ Tell It Slant Reading Series/Fourth Genre Night - Alberta Street Pub, Portland OR. Camera: Kyle Macdonald, Terrance Seimon
Fragments from the Encyclopedia of Censorship
Essay + Video Projection. Live Reading Performance 5/12/2015. Tell It Slant Reading Series "Fourth Genre Night" @ Alberta Street Pub, Portland OR.
Essay excerpted from the memoir, We Were Meant To Be a Gentle People.
Words: Dao Strom Sounds: Barry Brusseau Camera & Editing: Kyle Macdonald