Rehearsal For Encountering looks into the moment of intercultural contact between the Asian indentured laborers and the enslaved people from Africa, who were either coerced or tricked into laboring in plantations in the Caribbean during the mid-19th century. The film is structured with footage taken during a research trip when I revisited sites that were documented in historical archives of Chinese indentured labor in Cuba 古巴華工調查錄.

The footage is accompanied by texts generated by pulling apart and weaving together various theoretical writings. They are narrated in two languages - Cantonese and Spanish. The narration is interrupted and punctuated by electronic sound, conga drum beats, recordings of Jazz shedding, and a jazz conversation between musicians/theorists Fred Ho and Salim Washington. While arranging the sounds and images for the film, I try to bring in wandering, destabilizing, and colliding. These forms of movement aim to cultivate bodily viewing experiences that resemble acts of teetering in between and to work around the static pastness within histories.

This piece couldn’t be done without your guidance and support. Thank you.

Alexei Basso

Jane Gillooly
Yingheng Huang
Chihyang Hsu
Audrey Jaramillo
Patte Loper

Megan McMillan
Kenneth Tam
Anthony Romero
Zeyuan Ren

HD video, color, sound; 9m12s.

Script for Rehearsal For Encountering