June 23, 2013
Lisbon, Portugal site
2–6 pm


Nancy Stark Smith, with Mike Vargas
We were 29 people (28 dancers plus Mike making music) in a corner studio on the 3rd floor of a factory building in Lisbon, Portugal—LX Factory—that has been converted to artist studios and businesses.  Hosted by Forum Dança, this was the third day of a 3-day workshop, culminating in the Global Underscore. Quite a packed 3 days!
The factory building was at the base of a bridge that looks exactly like the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco! Our studio looked up from almost under the bridge out to the orange spans. Across the river, we could see the towering arms-wide statue of Jesus that also overlooks Rio de Janeiro, Brasil. We were ready for the telescoping global connections!
I love Brandin’s beautiful opening image of the empty, ready studio in Brooklyn. (See that on the screen of the computer in our photo.) I also loved his Thin Red Line drawing sketching our zig zag east-west path around the globe (also posted on our wall). We faced Camas, Asturias, Spain on the opening stand and Rio de Janeiro, Brasil on the closing.
It was a very warm day in Lisbon, but our sweat kept us cool enough not to be uncomfortable.  Before 2pm, we were scurrying, as always, to get all the systems ready for our global rendezvous: signs written and posted, Mike’s instruments set up, Isabel setting up the Second Life link (see her in the photo), and the watermelon with mint and lemon (no limes to be found) cut up and ready for our final Sharing snack. 
Ready or not, the bell rang at 2 and we were, indeed, arriving—to ourselves, the space, the group, the event, and to all of you!  What a deep pleasure.
After last year’s supersized, tech-enhanced Global Underscore, I thought we might be giving it a rest this year. But Brandin was on fire to take it on and run with it, and we from Lisbon send HUGE THANKS to him, Nancy Hughes, and Lucy Mahler for making this powerfully positive and fascinating event happen again this year.
(typed into the computer during the Underscore)
How far are we?
All inclusive means you out there here and some of these movements were there too, where you are. Maybe a little inclination of the earth, when someone closed his/her eyes, could make a politician stumble just before he was…just before he was about to call his bank for another transition. and us in the silence of this music were we just about to make that kind of inclination for a breath? A second breath. Thank you all for this moment, we were many, can we get together again?  
open doors, open windows, open bodies
(transcribed as spoken during the Sharing; apologies for mistakes!)
liked streaming best, felt alive
enjoyed watching the projection, what makes people move, what attracts me- what attracts you, what connects and crosses, – what motivates you. enjoyed the peaceful space; everything is accepted –
 today felt very down to earth, sometimes it feels magical – today felt non- magical in a good way. felt normal and radical in a good way – was glad to be here.
amazing – wasn’t familiar with the u-score, but could relate to it. being able to notice all what had been discussed in the days before in the score was amazing
warmed up – when I do, it’s wonderful – awareness . confidence in one’s body and each other – had so much energy – more than I knew what to do with – difficult to find a resolution.
first time I did the underscore in Sao Paolo 2003 – felt lost then , felt completely different today – was special to do the u’score and CI  – events since then have connected to this moment and my involvement in the underscore.
Had a strong feeling that there is no way that our movements can not participate in the whole – felt overwhelmed
Second Life looked so alien, the most alien world, I couldn’t relate to it and was a bit freaked out by its strange relationship. The constant sound of humming bridge also alien, so that was the bridge between the Second Life and here.
A lot of things, different energies, awareness, moods, things happening. New foci. Brings a lot to the dance and the experience. Ease came from relaxing. A lot of generosity.
Quit drinking coffee 3 weeks ago. Today I drank two! Trying to, made it somehow, takes a long time for me to see the big picture, organize myself and the other, the relations.
These 3 days bring me much more awareness, not only about my body but to the group, the net we establish. Like finding little sparkles in the environment. An echo from one corner to here, feel the link between people who don’t know each other. It has been a pleasure.
A lot of fun. We created some kind of creature. Dance is a very true human activity, I relate to people through dance. Moments of stillness, subtle. Nice to look in people’s eyes, observe people.
Feeling grateful. Feeling of an aware trance. Observing everything – colour, sound, touch. Wanted to press Idiot Button but decided just to stay, it was incredible. Expectations, I forgot them. Felt oversensitive –emotional state. Almost cried in small dance. Grateful.
Injured, wasn’t going to participate but have learned to work with what I have. Thank you, I felt very supported by everyone I danced with, that they took really care. A very special sensation.
Isabel – I’m very thankful. For being able to bring Second Life; it’s not intrusive, optional.  I felt somewhere else as well as here. Spiritual connection has been the ideal. Makes it more literal. Not being too demanding. Recognizing it’s still not out of the world yet. It went very fast.
Went to see a performance and had a sensation of being a broken elastic – was in pain; no identity, didn’t want to come – I came -memories can be transformed because of the people, the room. other people’ s identity gave me identity back
Too early to reflect – was an intense experience – today was the result of last three day’s build up – thanking the room – covering different types of rules- wanted to be active, passive, watching – felt like we were able to build a small organism . enjoyed the sensation.
Thank you. I was new to the group today – sometimes it’s not easy to let people in, but this group did.
was happy to shake off, to dance out , remembers quote:  ‘love is not necessarily sweet – you walk into a room and do anything you can – in his case was to sing really loud’. appreciated the radical approach, the fun – has to apologise – hasn’t been dancing for a long time – issue of negotiating private space – was in a vortex of my own space yesterday.  (reads passage he wrote).
The moment when we feel our weight… Jams feels like you have to do something – But here: to lie down, to feel your weight – no need to do anything- no frustrations, followed my own desires. my brain switched off. Second Life offered a different perspective. Observed contact upside down – suddenly CI made sense – people were flying.  You become an avatar.
Thank you for the 3 days and fantastic ending. During the score – because of the atmosphere, I noticed I had enough time and space to inhabit my own mind. ‘mystery’ concept from yesterday kept coming back.  Wanted to hold onto this state. noticed at some point – I was more present, noticed texture. people were very alive.
Nancy – I love that we’re allowed to look and see things which are going on –things feel private but can be directly observed – can see. there is such beauty in contrasting states going on alongside each other. Compositionally this was beautiful to see. Enjoyed the coincidence of the fact that we were facing Rio de Janeiro at the end and just outside the window, across the river, in the direction we were facing was the exact same ‘Jesus’ sculpture that stands looking over Rio! Plus someone had a Rio T-shirt on. [It’s explained that there is a protest today in Rio and many people in Lisbon are showing solidarity for that protest.]Enjoyed – after the resolution – the disengagement – we were still / fully present / various formations/ clear linkages – didn’t stop for a long time. we didn’t disengage for a very long time/  Tips of the iceberg moments.
Big thanks to Brandin Steffenson, with Nancy Hughes and Lucy Mahler, for coordinating this Global Underscore and to Forum Danca for continuing to exist and enable this meeting
Mike – thanks to us – we throw a great party
Stopped dancing for a while  -watching Mike was like watching somebody feeding a campfire.
Was great to have Mike’s support/ felt in contact with the music
I am happy to know that words and expressions exist that name what I feel when I dance CI.

Enjoyed the last three days/ felt lots of love in the beginning