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Janis Balodis

Latvia

Janis

I was born in Riga, Latvia on 2nd December 1987. My name is Janis Balodis and I am trying to be a good playwright (sometimes also script writer).

Some days ago I was asked to answer to the question – why am I writing. I didn’t say that I write to get some money. I said that I have a feeling that I can do this writing thing professionally (but this means that you earn money from doing your thing). So I was lying partly. Secondly, I said that when I was a child I was asked to read books and then write about them. Everything was clear – reading a lot is good, but watching a lot of television or playing computer games is not so good. If it wasn’t like that, I guess wouldn’t write this article. And I still believe that reading is better than computer games (but I enjoy Mafia, if you now this game).

About creative work. I am going to graduate from the Latvian Academy of Culture on 18th of June. Since second year of studies I started to write texts for performances. More or less I am connected with independent theatre in Riga called Dirty Deal Teatro.

If you want, you can watch some short video of performance we made last month. It is called “All My Presidents”.

Janis Balodis / 05 Jun 2011 / 23:39

Hello from Riga

At 10 o’clock presentation of my diploma work in the Latvian Academy of Culture, at 12 o’clock bus to Tallinn, at 16.30 back in Tallinn. Good luck to all and see you soon.

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Janis Balodis / 05 Jun 2011 / 17:04

Hiking

This is activity I like. I would like to share with you two videos (actually compilation of photos) of two hikes. First video is from spring 2011 and second video is two years old. Usually we walk about 35 to 40 kilometres per day. We asked our friends to join, but it didn’t work out. This summer we hope that we will find time to walk around Hijuma island (about 5 days walk). If you want you can join :)

3 days in 1min28sec

Walk from Tuja to Parnu

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Janis Balodis / 05 Jun 2011 / 16:32

Individual work – impressions about yesterday

Very shortly.

We experienced three rituals.

First one was brainwashing, but in a positive way. During the ritual you really gained this feeling that you switch to another level of existence.

Second one was my group’s ritual. We hypnotised ourselves to get into a very tiny space  and waited for miracle which didn’t come.

Third ritual was based on translation of one text (diary entry of Viesturs Meiksans). Translations were mixed together and created the feeling of chaos where you are trying to catch some kind of meaning.

After rituals we received next exercise from Peeter. Exercise is to find most interesting parts from lecture about Heroes, Sitchin’s lecture and from epic tale Gilgamesh.

In the afternoon with help of Martins Eihe I found a place where I saw two performances by one Finnish guy and Maike. Performances were somehow very close to the subject which we are dealing with – ritual. These performances created another space for couple of minutes.

In the very late evening we went to Jim’s and Loore’s place. Thank you guys for a warm welcome and your attic apartment is ubercool.

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Janis Balodis / 05 Jun 2011 / 15:50

Individual work – impressions about the day before yesterday

I want to be a good participant of the BaNd Expanded and share my impressions about last two days and this day.

Firstly, there are lot of impressions about the day before yesterday, which started with video lecture by Zecharia Sitchin. This man has written 7 books where he explains his theories. The main idea is that Sumerian culture is created by ancient aliens called Anunnaki. Anunnaki are inhabitants of planet called Nibiru and Nibiru is the planet beyond Neptune. Nibiru has a very elliptical orbit. Nibiru reaches inner solar system every 3,600 years. Annunaki arrived on Earth probably 450,000 years ago. They mined gold and other minerals. At one point they got bored of it and created new workers – Homo sapiens. How did they do that? Simple – combined their DNS with DNS of Homo erectus. Tada! Where are the Annunaki now? They went away, because of nuclear war between them and humankind (as I understood). Will they come back? Sitchin says yes, in this 21st century.

Madness? Then explain how ancient people were able to move these stones.

It is still impossible nowadays.

Has Sitchin received critics? A lot, for example this – “If these are gods, why are they stuck with our cheap B movie technology of rockets, microphones, space-suits, and radiation therapy? If they are gods, then why can’t they have some really divine technology such as intradimensional worm-hole travel, antigravity, starlight propulsion, or black hole bounce rematerializations? Sitchin has constructed what appears to be a convincing argument, but when he gets close to single images on ancient tablets, he falls back into the literalism of “Here is an image of the gods in rockets.” Suddenly, ancient Shumer is made to look like the movie set for Destination Moon.”

The day before yesterday we also visited Kadriorg park and then some nice semi-private bar called NOKU which means little boy’s penis. Austrian guy laughed about this joke a lot.

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Janis Balodis / 03 Jun 2011 / 1:25

Second day Part II

After a lunch we started to work in three groups. Our exercise is a Ritual. I am part of kind of interesting group which contains me and six Estonians. I can feel really special because they talk English only because of me. I appreciate that, thank you, guys.

And in the first group meeting we covered questions about what exactly is the ritual. We pointed out some thoughts, but again want to share one video with you. I remembered about this video when we mentioned that ritual is associated sometimes with repetitive movements and doing thinks without practical reason. Nice video

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Janis Balodis / 03 Jun 2011 / 1:03

Second day

June 2nd, 2011

Janis journal

The first real day of the workshop. It started with a nice breakfast at the hotel. At 11 o’clock we had the lecture by Tarmo Juristo (PhD in Studies of Culture, Tallinn University). The title of this lecture was Virtues of the Heroes through the History and Their Forms of Expression in 21st Century.

During this lecture Tarmo covered a lot of topics starting from the ancient times and coming to nowadays. A lot of stories about heroes were told.

Some facts were new for me, for example:

1) Prometheus can be recognized as a creator of the humankind, because one of the things that separate humans from animals is that humans cook the flesh, and Prometheus gave us the fire,

2) in the Middle Ages Prometheus was a Lucifer (light giver). Prometheus rebelled against gods, Lucifer rebelled against God, outcome the same.

After discussions we pointed out some basic thoughts:

1) there is no hero without a society, who says, that he is a hero,

2) a hero represents virtues of a society (Osama bin Laden is a hero for some Islamic people, but not for Americans),

3) everyone can be a hero (just add right components),

So, if our workshop theme is Nowadays’ Hero, I guess we will reflect on nowadays’ virtues. In my opinion, a hero has to make a change in established virtues and offer new ones.

The hero thing inspired me to share one video with you. This video is representing my favourite hero from the movie called Watchmen (it is based on comics) – Rorschach. The essence of the Rorschach is that he fights against injustice, do not make compromises and punishes without a trail. In the end of the film he is killed by one of his colleagues, because Rorschach’s way of thinking is not fitting in the paradigm of our world. Rorschach\’s Opening Scene

Talking about paradigms – Latvian parliament today elected a president who is familiar with oligarchs. Of course, unofficially. Sad. Rorschach will never come after him, but it could be nice.

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