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A hybrid exploration of movement, sound, and film capturing the social-political inferno and environmental crisis consuming the Amazon region of Brazil and its Indigenous communities.

Concept & Choreography: Felicitas Fischer  
Director & Editor: Conni McKenzie  
Sound Design: Jaime Serra dos Santos

Commissioned by the University of San Francisco Performing Arts & Social Justice Department for the 20th Anniversary Festival

Lungs of the Earth

Lungs of the Earth

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Words from the Artist:

How much does the air we breath cost?

Through movement and mixed-sound media, this piece aims to shed light on the complex web of geopolitics responsible for the massive destruction of the largest, most carbon absorbent tropical land in the world: the Amazon rainforest. What has become Brazil’s hottest political and environmental war zone reveals a long history of power struggle between those who live to protect it and those who live to profit off of it. The Bolsonaro administration, alongside aggressive expansion of agribusiness production, has further threatened the delicate balance of this natural sanctuary of biodiversity and the very air we breath. Beyond natural devastation, the lives, culture, and homes of the Indigenous people who have inhabited this land (long before Brazil ever became a nation) are suffering tremendous violence, displacement, and political extradition.

We are beyond the point of a wake-up call; the environmental crisis, exploitation of natural resources, abuse of power, corruption amongst government officials, violation of Indigenous land rights, cultural and communal genocide of Indigenous peoples, has been ongoing for centuries. How have we let our capitalistic agendas and neoliberal values override the value of human life, the value of clean air, the value of life on earth itself? Will the very air we breath no longer be a human right or automatic physiological process, but become commodified in of itself through rationed, bought, or artificially produced in order to maintain life? 

As the only species that has managed to industrialize, exploit, and commodify our planet to an unsustainable end, it is our duty to rehumanize ourselves, our relationship to nature and each other, reminding ourselves of its essential existence, beauty, and lifeline before it’s too late.


We encourage you to further your understanding by investigating and engaging in dialogue to amplify a truly dire situation that does not receive the attention it requires & deserves. FUNAI - National Indian Foundation of Brazil and The Amazon Conservation Team are two organizations fighting on the front lines alongside Indigenous communities in order to protect their land rights, preserve the Amazon rainforest, and confront governmental and big agribusiness threats. You can support their efforts right now by exploring & sharing these resources, learning about the scope of their work, or getting directly involved in supporting their mission.


Call on your local and federal government to take measures in stopping economic and political agendas that continue to implement practices of mass deforestation, industrialization of protected lands, and over extraction of natural resources.

Support local initiatives in Brazil in stopping pending legislation that would further permit the destruction of Amazonian land.

Start your own petition or pressure campaigns to engage the local and global community in enacting change.

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