WASHINGTON, D.C.—It’s a Sunday evening, and the typically calm Capitol is a cacophony of music, choreographed movement and a simmering sense of hope. The junior senator from Illinois, Tammy Duckworth, is spinning haphazardly, flapping the wings of the bird she represents. “The bird is an eagle,” she says, “yearning to be free.”
“When Nancy and Barbara approached me with this idea, I thought they were joking—some new-age Berkeley nonsense,” says Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (NY). “But once you put on the full-body leotard, lace up the shoes and thoroughly stretch your groin, you truly begin to feel the raw, revolutionary power of dance—the political possibilities.”
Barbara Lee, a congresswoman representing California’s 13th district, is painted head to toe in purple. Bent at the waist, her open hands forming antlers on her head, she bounds across the rotunda, stopping briefly to graze upon “the wheat of strong opposition.” When asked what that means—or if any of this will translate into legislative action and a check on Presidential powers, Lee bleats dismissively, licks her knee and leaps away.
“It’s about the beauty of movement, telling a story with your body,” explains Nancy Pelosi, House Minority Leader from San Francisco. “We can create an aesthetically wonderful and convincing political narrative through free, expressive dance. Our Republican colleagues across the aisle and in the White House are simply not prepared for this kind of aggressive, revolutionary performance art.”