September 11th – Celebration of Life “Be-In”

On September 11th 2011 I produced the Celebration of Life “Be-In” as an alternative way for local artists and community to acknowledge, process and transcend, via ritual, the events of 911.  While I am horrified by the tragedy and its aftermath which claimed many thousands of innocent lives and still impacts worldwide events – I think it is essential not only to mourn those who have been lost but to make a conscious choice to go on living, loving and celebrating life so we who envision a better world will have the strength and courage to actualize that vision. Imagine peace – work for justice!

Below is my improvised speech on that beautiful day in my local community garden in Park Slope Brooklyn, followed by my written artists’ statement, along with a short video documenting portions of that wonderful day to the soundtrack of MAURI’S “Mankind.”

Art is a Grand Tree — its roots dig down into the very essence of history and culture, drawing sustenance from the depths of authentic human experience. Ritual employing art and linking the strength of the tree creates alchemy in the human soul. As we gather spiritual energy from the Grand Tree of art we can share that energy with the world around us, acknowledging, honoring, and ultimately transcending all that separates us.

Each of us lives our own sacred story. As I strive to understand 9/11 through my story and the stories of others, the complexities and questions make me marvel with horror at the deep psychic impact of this tragic event. Its aftermath of oppression and war has had a profound effect on the entire world.

In the face of tragedy, I trust in art. And I trust the tree. My “Sacred Staffs,” and amulets, all hand carved from the roots and trunks of trees, are my way of connecting with and sharing Nature’s healing power. They, linked in ritual, are my voice and my prayer.

MAURI’S song “Mankind” expresses my fervent prayer that we will learn to respect all beings on our beautiful, fragile planet — may that day come soon!

Judith Z Miller
Healing Ritual Artist

Judith Z. Miller with Master Drummer Frisner Augustin, September 11th, 2011
Photo by Debra P. Hershkowitz

Credits for Celebration of Life! “Be In” Music Video

Artistic Director/Executive Producer
Judith Z. Miller

Sacred Staffs & Wearable Art
Judith Z. Miller
Sticks & Stones
Group Instillations & Individual healing sessions

“Mankind” by MAURI
Written by Mauri Nadina

Video Producer
Dawn Paap

Videographers/Video Editors
Jett Cain
Sam Rappold

Global Rhythms
DJ Neva E. Wartell
Radio Soleil
More information:
Radio show archive:

Body Painters
Rainbow Heart
Tyler P. Fairbanks
Jim Su

Dance Coordinator
Sylvana Tapia

Lacey A. Birch
Kristina Harris
Andrew Jacobs
Raven Jelks
Katrina Ong
Olivia Mia Orozco
Molly Rappold
Sasha Smith
Mirirai Sithole
Sylvana Tapia
Natalie Walters

Little Blond Girl
Lucia Ferguson

Ahuva Adanani

Frisner Augustin
Michael Adams
Steve Deats
Andres Nieves
Shoshana Jedwab
Judith Z. Miller

Debra P. Hershkowitz
Julius Constantine Motal
Heidi Russell

Dawn Paap

Twin Towers Oil Painting
Leon Nicholas Kalas

Event Invitation
Angelica Grant

Event Promotional Video
Sonja Bozik & Akhil Bali

Lisa Fernandez
Rebecca Joy Fletcher
Pat MCcarty
Sheri Stein

Warren St/St. Marks Community Garden
Park Slope Brooklyn New York

Special thanks to Erica Louder, Dr. Lois Wilcken & La Troupe Makandal, Inc., the Warren St/St. Marks Community Garden, DJ Neva E. Wartell, and to all the artists, volunteers & participants in the Celebration of Life! “Be-In”

Celebration of Life! “Be-In”
Artists Commemorating 9/11
September 11, 2011
Park Slope, Brooklyn NY

A ZAMO! Production © 2011
All Rights Reserved

About artistsoulspeaks

Zelda (aka Judith Z. Miller) Bio Zelda (aka Judith Z. Miller) is a multifaceted artist who lives in an erotic, musical, spiritual universe. As a feminist Jew who studies shamanism, she is inspired by the beauty of nature and the guiding force of her intuition as she explores the themes of connection to the Earth, spirituality, sexuality and gender. She sculpts, draws, writes, performs, photographs, and is an ecstatic dancer/percussionist/healer. Currently, under an Individual Artist Commission awarded by Arts Mid-Hudson, Zelda is developing Que Será, Será (Whatever Will Be, Will Be), a multi-media one-person show that chronicles the joys and challenges of navigating non-binary Queerness from a childhood in the 1950s to adulthood. This project is made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by Arts Mid-Hudson. She is also producing ZELDA’S Happenings, a series of black-light, body-painting, percussion dance parties that will produce original wearable art for a new UpState Artists Clothing Collection representing artists of the region. Zelda co-founded The Fine Line Actors Theatre in Washington DC and performed at such venues as Source, GALA Hispanic Theatre and the Kennedy Center in DC, in NYC at WOW Café Theatre and Dixon Place, at the Lace Mill and with the TMI Project in Kingston. She published in Inside Arts magazine, The Washington Post, and American Theatre magazine. Zelda currently resides at the Lace Mill artist residence in Kingston NY with her Great Dane “Z”.
This entry was posted in Brooklyn Community, Dance, Handmade Crafts, Judith Z. Miller in the Media, Multimedia, Music, Performance, Photography, Spirituality, Uncategorized, Video, Visual Art, Women and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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