Freedom to Play

Gypsy Girl 1971

Gypsy Girl 1971

By Irene Bublik

Growing up in Buenos Aires during one of the most controversial and violent times in the country’s history was not an easy feat. Political turmoil, domestic terrorism and a violent and loud silence pervaded my childhood. Nationwide curfew was daily currency and for us, children, the streets were an uncertain and dangerous space.

Luckily for us, we still had our imaginations to run wild. And wild they ran. The schoolyard was the place where we would become wild princesses, distressed queens, brave sailors and…well… loud and opinionated people.

But I don’t want to digress, so please forgive me. I was asked to write about playing, so here I go.

Being raised by intellectual, unconventional, professional parents, I was taught early on that nurturing your imagination was the safest way to preserve and grow your inner child. And keep it young. Forever.

“I could create those exciting characters, imaginary friends who knew no danger, who conformed to nothing and to nobody and who were loud, tempestuous, brave and courageous beyond modesty and common sense.”

At 10, that seemed a rather ambitious task, after all, who dwells in the uncertainty of the future, the perils of growing up and the dangers of a silenced spirit? Who indeed, if not children raised in the midst of a repressed society?

That’s when I developed my love for the performing arts. My parents began sending me to the Escuela Labarden, where I was exposed to some of the most creative and unconventional minds of that time.   On stage I could be anything I wanted, and then some more. On paper, I could create those exciting characters, imaginary friends who knew no danger, who conformed to nothing and to nobody and who were loud, tempestuous, brave and courageous beyond modesty and common sense.  I became Cecilia, Mariquita, Penelope, Sofia. I fought injustice, animal cruelty, bullying and hunger in Biafra. I defeated kings, fell in love with martyrs, fought tyrants and taught bulls to resist abuse. That one was not very romantic, but I always loved cows and bulls.

“This November, let’s all embrace our inner playful souls. Let’s make this new edition of the “Spirit and Place” Festival our playground!”

And then I grew up.

I am finding my way back, though. I am re-learning how to play and although the rules have changed, my spirit remains untamed and I am excited looking at the road ahead, a road that is populated by dear friends, a free country and this wonderful and welcoming community of creators and fearless artists.

This November, let’s all embrace our inner playful souls. Let’s make this new edition of the “Spirit and Place” Festival our playground!

Would you play with me?

Peace.

Irene Bublik is a native of Argentina, transplanted to Indianapolis after living in Israel for six years. She is also a Spanish Linguist by trade. She’ll be playing the role of “Dixie” in the upcoming production “Ashes to Ashes“, showing at the Indy Fringe Theater Nov 8th – Nov 10th, 2012.

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2 thoughts on “Freedom to Play

  1. Thank you, Leslie. Yes, I am thankful for the multicultural, liberal, worldly and artistically oriented childhood I had in Argentina and for being able to play surrounded by so many wonderful and creative people in Indianapolis.

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