Early Spring

IMG_3277I love the spring. Especially early spring when the smell of winter is still dangling in the air.

Something is coming, pushing through, already pushed through from all that waiting and in some cases aching, and what will it be?

Maybe it’s the question that I love best.

It has begun. The faintest quickening. How will formation take shape? What new things or experiences have begun to germinate and sprout?

This soul craves renewal.

XD

One Small Step

China Beach stillGreetings, lovely people. (***Scroll down to forgo memory lane + just watch if you prefer.)

So, I found this restored footage of a scene from China Beach, the astonishing war drama series that I had the honor of working on many moons ago.

It was my first time in a speaking role on a professional TV set. I played a Red Cross worker with Brian Wimmer’s Corporal Boonie Lanier after his life-altering accident. The episode was in the final season – 408 – and titled “One Small Step.”

It was an unforgettable experience for so many reasons. For one, I had just gotten my drivers license (no small feat for this New Yorker) and didn’t have a car yet, so on my work day I took 2 buses and hitched the rest of the way (!!) to arrive on time at the abandoned airport/North Hollywood set. The kindness of strangers, indeed. This was before the internet, smartphones, apps and the all kinds of speedy access we have today.

I can still vividly remember the audition. My friend Pat ever so kindly (there’s that word again) drove me to Warner Brothers. I was the only actress who did not have an agent at the time – I noticed that while signing in. Bless the visionary casting and production team who were always ready to try new talent. I recall somehow getting myself to the studio a few days before, to excitedly pick up the audition sides. Again, this was before the digital age…people picked up material in person. You had to get your body there (or maybe if you were very fancy, you had the script delivered).

I remember the burnt orange relaxed-fit blouse that I wore, tied at the waist and purchased at JC Amber, the then iconic “clothing store to the stars” where I worked–we did Arsenio’s colorful suits!! (Ah…fashion choice memories do linger)….and I recall waiting alone in the hallway, resting on the floor, a leg outstretched, feeling the ground beneath me before being called in. I remember the little joke I made inside the room and the simple performance of that simple moment. It was not a filmed audition. It was all just live in the room, in the moment, just what it was.

And of course I remember that Hollywood single apartment on Sycamore where I lived, and that next morning when CD John Levey rang, telling me the role was mine. At the time, I had this mischievous ragtime-esque outgoing music on my analog message machine, but in fact, I was home to breathlessly take the call, and I could feel that pleasure that a casting director must feel upon delivering this kind of happy news to a new actor. It was sheer heaven.

So much has changed about auditioning since then – not to mention all of the other crazy fast changes that keep pulling us forward, whether we like it or not. But in some ways, the heart of the ritual remains the same: People coming together, through whatever channels, to tell a story. To make something beautiful. To try their best to create something that feels real, human and alive.

And that, my friends, makes it all worthwhile.

So thanks to technology, this is my simple moment to share with you.

XO

Dalit

Catching up a little

It’s nearly fall, and I haven’t posted in quite a while. Here we go!

April was a big month for me; my husband and I were in Japan having our long-awaited Shinto marriage ceremony. We’d wanted to have one back in 2010, but the Tsunami and earthquake intercepted. And so, during spring break we jetted there, and my dear brother even joined us from New York. After the ceremony, we spent an unforgetable time hiking the famous “Nakasendo Trail” — the old trading path merchants used from Kyoto to Tokyo long ago. It was mind-blowing: the land, our lodgings, the food, the history. All of it. And of course the cherry blossoms! (I was lucky to have cherry blossom tea among the other delectable mountain vegetable and sashimi dishes I got to have…).

In other news, the festival journey of  “Waiting for You” is nearing it’s end. It recently screened at the Action on Film Festival and will again at Film Fest International – Berlin in October. I’ve always wanted to travel internationally with a project (actually I did in grad school with a co-ed contemporary and traditional Jewish music a cappella group I sang with~ true story…), but to do so with a film holds such an allure to me. I suppose in both cases it is about sharing human feelings and stories through the universal languages of music and film. Pure magic. I think it’s highly unlikely I’ll be able to attend the Berlin screening, but I’m so happy to even ponder the whole thing.

There’s much more to catch you up on (and I will soon), but for now, enjoy the pics below.

I want to add that “Waiting for You” is a distinctly moving and powerful film, best viewed on a big screen if possible. I realize the next screening is overseas and it is unlikely it will be back in the U.S. on a big screen, but hopefully there will be chances for you to view it somehow if you haven’t already. Particulary if you have any experience caring for an elderly parent or relative….you will be moved. I’ll keep you posted.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy the changing of the seasons!

xDalit

 

just another bit of gorgeousness on our walk!
Just bit of gorgeousness on our walk!
Sunset path
Our stay at the Zen monastary. We were the only ones there, meditated in the morning with the proprietor/Zen Priest and had the most delicious vegan food prepared by his wife...lotus balls that tasted like matzah balls!!
Our stay at the Zen monastary. We were the only ones staying there. We got to meditate in the morning with the Zen Priest/proprietor and had the most delicious vegan food prepared by his wife…including a soup of lightly fried lotus balls that tasted like matzah balls! Heavenly times…

Bizarre & Beautiful

I’m thrilled it’s 2016. I remember as a child wondering what it would be like to live in the two thousands….it was hard to even conceptualize at the time, and sometimes it still is.

Well, we made it. We’re here. And in this bizarre beautiful world, there are countless chances to wake up. To begin again. To affirm that this life is good, no matter the perceived obstacles. No matter the madness. It’s all a massive gift.

So let’s do this!

Yasss

P.S.

“Waiting for You” will be screening again this Saturday at the Whitefire Theater in Los Angeles as part of the California Women’s Film Festival. If you’re in town and free, come by!

cwff

A special relationship

Doorway
Agnes & Pops (with Ralph Michiel)

The next few days mark the entry of “Waiting for You” into the North American film festival circuit (it was part of the Cannes shorts corner just recently). It’s an unusual film for a number of reasons. One thing I’ve been thinking about recently is its central relationship: father and daughter. Especially with Father’s Day coming in June, it occured to me that we don’t commonly observe this relationship in the cinema, at least in the United States. Actually, that’s one of things that initially attracted me to this project. If this subject matter feels meaningful to you for any reason, do consider following the journey of this tender and poetic short film. And if you are in Los Angeles and can make it this Monday at 5pm, do come on by to the acclaimed and “defiantly independent” Dances with Films festival for the showing of “Waiting for You” and five other noteworthy films.

Peace, Dalit

WFY DWF

the fabric of nothing and everything

trusting . . .

Spring is approaching. Really, it is!

Reflecting on the year biz-wise so far, I have three projects in various states of completion: one is in post-production, one will be screened next month, and one is in pre-production.

As excited as I am to be a part of them all, these in betweeny moments can feel unsettling. I realize that this restlessness is something I share about a lot–and I know I’ve posted this sketch before. I drew it a few years back, and it almost feels prophetic (I imagine it will continue to be relevant….those in-between-spaces are much of the fabric of life, yes?).

Looking at the image now, though, the cool thing is that can see progress: there have been undeniable strides, but since I am still, em, alive, there now are all these new unknown spaces to befriend and many more courageous steps to be taken. One at time, I tell myself. Hush and flow. All is a blessing.

I wish you all a glorious spring, with steps that make your spirits soar.

May you enjoy the freshness of each new moment!

Peace,

Dalit

springy

yearlings to horses this year of the horse

yb quote

A few days ago, I attended a milestone high school reunion in NYC. I took two planes, a bus and the subway to get there, and despite a mechanical difficulty on the first plane compromising my connection, I (breathlessly) made it.

Although the attendance from my year was modest, it was magnificent to see these beautiful people, many of whom truly looked the same and even “felt” the same. The same, but better.

So much has happened to all of us over the years and indeed so much is happening now: all manners of beginnings, endings and the intervening adult growing pains we all get to experience. Yet somehow we managed to show up to this event, to shake hands, hug, laugh, deeply converse or simply just see eachother: we who knew each other when we were still so innocent–barely teens and throughout the tumult of adolescence. We knew each other then and can bear witness to that now.

And to see each other again, as fully grown individuals (this can no longer be denied), was startlingly comforting.

So thank you, my sweet compadres, for seeing me then and now and allowing me to see you, too. And to those who could not make it, know that your presence was missed and that every good wish is sent your way.

High school was not an easy time for some of us, but I am certain that with all the grit and confusion, we sparked light (sometimes dimly, sometimes brightly) that helped each other get through it and ultmately become who we are. And who we are still becoming.

Shabbat Shalom!

Love,

Dalit

yearbook

Feeling into 2014

humbar

It’s been a year of intense stretching and the lessons that go along with that. And like any good stretch, I am now feeling myself come back to center. Hallelujah!

I’ve been thinking about the new year. Unlike the usual approach of envisioning what I’d like it to look like, I’ve been musing more in a body way: what do I want it feel like? How can I play with gravity more? How can I experiment with my environment in tiny potent ways? Inner and outer?

One of the ways I’ve dealt with some of the stress recently has been to fiddle around with my keyboard and voice. Here is a link to some of that. There’s an original tune (Floatation Diving) and an improvisation I did recently in my living room, named accordingly. There are a lot of ambient sounds (creaky, news papery, tea kettley, husbandy) that were all a part of the moment, the time.

May you complete this year with compassion and grace. And may the new year bring the sweetest surprises!

Brightest Blessings,

Dalit

I’ve been gone, but not really.

IMG_3033

I am only human. My mental bandwith has limits.

Late September I began a graduate theater arts class at the local university. It’s a performance theory class, which is changing the way I view most everything. So much to read, digest, assimilate. But it’s really exciting! I’m with others who are digging into this thickly-textured material with me. With our wise and fearless professor, we are all lighting the way.

I am approaching my studies with an intimacy that, when it isn’t creating claustrophobic overwhelm, feels meaningful. Most happily, I am learning a new vocabulary with which to understand, articulate and create afresh.

So, lovely people, please know that while my absence has been deliberate, it has also been with very open eyes, glimpsing altering landscapes that I will share as the simmering progresses.

Happy October and November, too!

Peace,

Dalit