Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Karma Mayet Johnson's "Indigo"

Karma Mayet Johnson

I should have figured that Karma Mayet Johnson's Indigo: a Blues Opera--featuring her text, composition, lyrics, choreography, direction and charismatic performance--would bring out almost everyone who's anyone in New York's vibrant Black lesbian community...and anyone who's hip in the Black arts community and then some...and then some more...and then everyone else.

I should have figured, too, that since Dixon Place comps press but does not reserve seats for press--an unnecessary holdover from the old, informal setup at Ellie Covan's tiny Bowery loft--I might end up, for the very first time, stuffed into a corner of the theater's balcony, even though I showed up early--or what would normally be early. Lucky to have that rail-side seat, though, since there were people dragging chairs they managed to find somewhere to sit behind me a couple of rows deep.

I regret it if you were not one of the roughly half-million smart people crammed into Dixon Place last night, for Indigo was a one-night-only affair. Unfair.

Can we meet up again, some time-traveling time, with handsome Bell (Ashley Brockington) and honey-sweet LizaSue (Karma Mayet Johnson), two brave, uppity women in love taking the Underground Railroad to freedom? I want to go there again and take you, too, to experience this very different slave story. If the Dixon Place sound sometimes muffled details of speech and singing, enough emotion and narrative were conveyed by carved, gestural movement and bluesy sensuality.

Visit This Is Karma, and keep watch for the possible, desirable reappearance of LizaSue and Bell.

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