Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Valentino: Poetry in Action from Diane Birch

Growing up, I was obsessed with the performing arts—theater, dance, music—and how they could be used to tell stories and communicate a shared human experience on many levels.  These days my primary focus has been on writing, but I would not be true to myself if I didn't find a place in my blog for those other interests as well.  To that end, I introduce you to Poetry in Action—a recurring feature on Today's Little Ditty that highlights a variety of expressive means, all living and breathing in tandem with the written word.

Today's little ditty is brought to you by singer-songwriter Diane Birch.  The following is taken from the bio on her website:

Birch was born in Michigan, but at a very young age she moved to Zimbabwe with her South African-born parents. Her dad was a conservative pastor who moved his family from continent to continent. So the young Birch migrated with her folks from Zimbabwe to South Africa to Australia, following her father’s mission. Throughout her journeys, Birch longed to be back in America, and finally got her wish when her family relocated to Portland, Oregon, when she was 10.

Compared to the average American teenager, Birch was truly exotic, both in terms of where she had resided and in how she had lived – within the confines of a strict religious community that had little interaction with its secular neighbors. She had to be resilient and adaptable, which at times meant seeking refuge in a rich fantasy life, imagining herself as someone living in say, the eighteenth century, conjuring up imaginary friends/muses like Valentino, the subject of one of her songs, an Amadeus like-figure, somewhat more dashing in proportion than the real Mozart.
Unfamiliar with Diane Birch until earlier this month, I instantly fell in love with the creativity and fun of this video and I think you will too.  Perhaps she'd consider loaning me her muse from time to time...?

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