I was used to walking past Matucana Street without noticing anything or anyone. But, one day, I found myself looking at an interesting advertisement of a show held at Matucana100. The artwork simply caught my attention immediately — “an earthquake” it read, and I as I read, felt a piercing pain in my chest. As a Chilean, the word earthquake shouldn’t evoke such feelings; to us, an earthquake is very common and we usually relate the word with the event of 2010; but to me, it definitely meant something more… I decided to buy the ticket for the premiere night and sat on front row. I have to admit, though, that I was really nervous about watching the show, I had always been a little skeptical towards contemporary dancing, and to art in general. Not to mention I had always been skeptical about Matucana100 and its too-abstract-to-comprehend- performances. However, this performance caught my attention for obvious reasons and as the music started playing and dancers began their act I was transported to a familiar place
I found myself looking at the horizon, at the place that once had been loved but now was destroyed. I found myself looking at the blue ocean that had turned gray, somehow blaming it for all of the destruction made. That day I saw death and damage, I saw the faces of people who had lost everything and had to hold my tears back and carry on with my duty. But today I felt like I couldn’t held back the tears, watching the performers moving so gracefully and emotionally made me reminisce all of the pain that the victims had suffered that night. The look on the artists’ faces resembled the look of the victims, those who woke up on Febrarury the 27th to find out that everything that they used to cherish was gone.
The performers of “an earthquake” imitating the movement of the earthquake by falling
On Febrarury the 28th I took the bus at a familiar place and woke up at a devastated place. Everywhere I looked I saw desolation and pain. I saw the survivors looking through the ruins, hoping to get a piece of their lives back. The scenes were disturbing and they repeated one after the other, it looked like a haunted lonely town and as I walked through it, my hope and faith were diminishing. And then a family showed up, they were clearly devastated but even though they were suffering, they offered me a big bright smile and shook my hand. “What you are doing here is incredible. Thank you for the help, sir” And with those words I felt the strength coming back, I was the one supposed to provide them optimism and strength, but they were the ones who gave it to me.
And the show captured that feeling in such a real way: The dancers made me feel the melancholy of the 27F night, but they also made me feel the gratefulness that the people I helped had. I was transported by their synchronized movements and the enchanting music. I felt proud of their work, they had transformed a horrible event into something so majestic as a piece of dance.
The show ended, the red curtain fell and so did a tear.