Dancing Against Time

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8x10
$95
In stock
12.5x15
$225
In stock
16x19
$450
In stock
16x19
$525
In stock
20x24
$1800
In stock
Even though Akiane never got to meet all her grandparents and relatives from vastly different ethnic and racial backgrounds she immensely treasured the living stories they had left behind. One of her maternal great-grandmothers, Victoria Greiss-Blinstrubiene, had to flee Lithuania, once a thriving haven for Jews. Vilnius, its capital was often called the second Jerusalem. Victoria’s entire village of thousands of Ashkenazi Jews were all exterminated shortly after her incredible escape to Brazil. Alarmingly, almost two hundred thousand – ninety two percent of all Lithuanian Jews, who could not escape, were killed, one of the highest total mortality rates of the holocaust. Upon Victoria’s return back home, World War II and a famine broke out, Victoria lost her husband, her right arm, and one of her five children. She was no longer persecuted as a Jew because of a changed surname, but she risked lives of all her children by hiding other Jewish families in her home for two years during the war. The times were extremely hard as there was no money and no work. For many weeks the Blinstrub family had just a small bag of potatoes to eat. One morning Victoria was again forced to rummage through the damp piles of moldy garbage in the town alleys in hopes of finding at least something edible she could bring home, when suddenly she noticed a sizable cloth bundle. Without the slightest hesitation, she nervously untied the sack, and looked inside. She could not believe what she found—the cloth bundle was stuffed with paper cash. There was more than enough money to feed her own and the fugitive family in hiding the whole year. Disorientated from starvation she ran home ecstatic about her treasure, and just as she was ready to celebrate . . . an ear-piercing wailing suddenly echoed from the outside. A middle-aged Russian woman was sobbing and begging the strangers to return her cloth bundle as she told her story how she had borrowed money for bailing her husband from a wrongful imprisonment. In disbelief and despair, Victoria tensely stared at the hysterical stranger, at her own famished children and at the fugitive family. She was forced to quickly make a heart-wrenching decision. And after a few moments, to everyone’s shock and rage, Victoria opened the window, and waved the bundle for the Russian before throwing it down onto her arms. In gratitude, the stranger gave Victoria enough money to survive the winter famine. Even though most Akiane’s ancestors did not pass along any of their spiritual traditions, their lives did. On behalf of all those who had fought for integrity, love and freedom, Dancing against Time was Akiane’s own dedication in the interpretative form of nine Menorah flame dancers sacrificing their lives for others, illuminating our darkest moments and honoring what is the most sacred.
SKU: dancing-against-time Category: