Text by Chloe Veltman and Video by Kelly Whalen
Sarah Bush is wild about Oakland. The choreographer created This Land: Oakland, a triptych of springtime outdoor dance pieces performed in various locations around the city, as a way to celebrate her home town’s natural and urban landscapes and engage with local history.
In the second performance of the three, “Reach,” staged at the bucolic Woodminster Cascade on the edge of Joaquin Miller Park on Sunday, Mar. 20, members of the Sarah Bush Dance Project embody three pioneering women with Bay Area ties whose lives intersected in the 19th century: writers Gertrude Stein and Ina Coolbrith, and dancer Isadora Duncan.
“They were trailblazers for their time,” Bush says of her three sources of inspiration.
In addition to drawing attention to the physical beauty of the landscape and reaching back through time, “Reach” also serves as a meditation on the power and strength of the female body.