d’bi.young’s use of the term biomyth refers to the abbreviation of the words biography and mythology. she first encountered the term reading audre lorde’s zami,which lorde refers to as a biomythography. in her reinterpretation of the term biomyth,biography pertains to the accounting of one’s own lived experience; mythology, in this context, pertains to
a. the poetic reinterpretation of the lived experience
b. the use of orature, folklore, myth, and magic in the process of reinterpretation.
biomyth therefore, is the poetic space between what we interpret as real and what we deem make-believe.
monodrama is one of the primary areas of focus of YEMOYA’s biomyth theatre process. monodrama is theatrical solo-performance work. biomyth monodrama is a mythologized auto-biographical play told by the story’s creator/performer, using the eight sorplusi elements to weave the story together. poetry, music, magic/ritual, monologue and dialogue (primarily with the audience) are bi-products of the sorplusi method and are crucial stylistic, aesthetic and technical considerations.
a western theatrical fourth wall is rarely present as the performer erases the divide between audience and storyteller, real and make-believe; the stoyteller-audience relationship is crucial in biomyth monodrama storytelling; encouraging the biomythicist to constantly explore and expand the relationship with themselves, their communities, and their belief and practice in art as a tool for social transformation.
resident artist who come from a cross/multi-disciplinary background are encouraged to explore their particular artistic medium using the biomyth and the sorplusi method as their guide.
the sorplusi method: an afrikan-jamaican-canadian derived arts methodology
The Sorplusi Method
S.O.R.P.L.U.S.I. is an acronym representing an arts-based personal and professional development methodology that emerges out of Dub Poetry and is founded on eight guiding principles of Self-knowledge, Orality, Rhythm, Political content & context, Language of communication, Urgency, Sacredness, and Integrity. The methodology – based on the seminal work of pioneer Dub Poet Anita Stewart and being developed by her daughter d’bi.young anitafrika – is an approach to self-actualization and artistic creation that (a) focuses on the holistic development of the artist/individual in the process of self-discovery/recovery, before, during, and after creating works of art; (b) helps the artist/individual to identify their personal and professional integrities in art creation and dissemination (c) equips the artist/individual with the tools to mentor others in their development as well.
The method is unique in that its approach is holistic; emphasizing the artist/individual’s creative, physical, emotional, mental and spiritual identities as crucial points of investigation. It uses the artist/individual’s lived-experience as catalyst for all explorations and expands into bio-myth creative works of art. Through meticulous creative excavation of each principle, the artist/individual learns how to engage in self-analysis and reflection while developing a critical-analytical framework and an oppression-awareness point-of-view, both of which become central to their personal and creative process.
Each Sorplusi principle is a challenge to individual and artists to be continually self-aware, self-implicating, and honest before, during, and after generating artistic creations. Sorplusi affirms each artist’s accountability to and responsibility for (in other words to account for and respond to) their communities, co-creating a comprehensive eco-system in which artists and community members are mutually accountable, responsible and empowered to affect social change in their lives.
the methodology can be applied as a training and developmental tool in diverse contexts such as educational institutions at all grade levels, community and arts organizations, as well as in corporate settings.
sorplusi method in other words…
the word sorplusi is an acronym, originated by d’bi.young, based on the seminal dub-theory work of her mother, pioneer dubpoet anita stewart. the acronym represents eight considerations of creative thought and practice: self-knowledge, orality, rhythm, political content and context, language, urgency, sacredness, and integrity.
these ideas form a comprehensive eco-system of accountability and responsibility between the artist/storyteller and the art/stories they choose to create/tell, how they choose to create/tell them and to whom they choose to create/tell them to; as well as observing the socio-political and socio-economic effects of the art/stories on everyday life.
the methodology challenges the artist to not only be invested in themselves but to (re)position to the centre of their micro and macro communities, being both accountable and responsible (able to account for and respond to) these communities who gather to witness their art. the artist mirrors society, encourages its self-critique, and inspires its self-growth.
the artist becomes conscious of their symbiotic relationship with the rest of society and the responsibilities that accompany that relationship; resulting in the simultaneous growth of the artist and their art as they uncover/recover themselves within the magic of personal development, creativity, community and social transformation.
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