- Introductory Rant in Performance of Assisted Living: Do You Have Any Money? (2013)
Ladies and Gents, come one come all. Step right up and take a peek. Wonder on wonders, never the like to be seen anywhere in the world, before or since: real live bodies on display. STEP RIGHT UP they’ll be stepping out, best feet forward, backward and forward just for you. Real live artists of all different shapes and sizes, svelte ladies and adipose gents, guess which way they swing.
Feats of endurance, decapitated heads, sweat glands on display, just check it out, one quick look and you’ll be forever hooked. Rites of passage, they walk till they drop. They sit till they piss. They stare till they . . . See how long they can take it. You’ll be the first to know. Check it out check it out. See what they’d rather not show, it’s all there on display. No more secrets. Smell their sweat. Witness their angst. Be a part of something too real to ignore. Feel their shame. Tits too big? Cocks too small? Check it out check it out. Flayed flesh, tongue lashings. You be the judge. Who suffers best? No more hiding in the wings. Step right up, folks. There’s nothing to lose. It’s all here for your delectation. Walk right up to them and take a sniff. Everything bared. Real live bodies on display. We do it better than your MoM,,,MoC . . . MAMA. You bet. That’s right, folks. We’re gonna have a big show right here. It’s not free but it’s gonna be worth your while. Just twenty-five bucks. Now, my friends, you have a choice: You can stand there with your hands in your pockets and shake hands with the unemployed or you can come inside and see the show. Follow your neighbors. They know where they’re going. They’re gonna see the freaks, the weirdos, the normal people, the desperados, the losers, the upper crust, even some NY Times critics. The world’s greatest gathering of human curiosities. They’re waiting for you on the inside, all real, all alive. Twenty-five dollars, just twenty-five dollars. Just one minute left to see it all for this special low price. The timer is ticking. I have to go in and start the show, and when I go it’s good-bye to this special price. Last call on the thirty-dollar deal. Step right up. It’s showtime, my friends, SHOWTIME! [End Page 562]
Yvonne Rainer, cofounding member of the Judson Dance Theater, made a transition to filmmaking following a fifteen-year career as a choreographer and dancer (1960–75). After making seven experimental feature films—Lives of Performers (1972), Privilege (1990), MURDER and murder (1996), among others—she returned to dance in 2000 via a commission from the Baryshnikov Dance Foundation for the White Oak Dance Project. Her dances since then include AG Indexical, with a little help from H.M.; RoS Indexical, a Performa07 commission; Spiraling Down; Assisted Living: Good Sports 2; and Assisted Living: Do You Have Any Money? Her dances and films have been shown worldwide. A memoir, Feelings Are Facts: A Life, was published by MIT Press in 2006.