Notes for Jerome & Divided Loyalties
Notes for Jerome
“During the summer of 1966 I spent two months in Cassis, as a guest of Jerome Hill. I visited him briefly again in 1967, with P.Adams Sitney. The footage of this film comes from those two visits. Later, after Jerome died, I visited his Cassis home in 1974. Footage of that visit constitutes the epilogue of the film.
“Other people appear in the film, all friends of Jerome: Taylor Mead, Bernadette Lafont, Charles Rydell; Barbara Stone and David Stone and their children; Noel Burch, Judith Malina and Julian Beck and the Living Theater collective; Ms.Chaliapin, Jean Jacques Lebel, Michel Fontayne; Alec Wilder, P.Adams Sitney and Julie Sitney; and Jerome's perhaps closest and oldest friend whose name I forgot but whom he always called Rosebud.
“The soundtrack was practically all recorded during the same period, during the same visits to Cassis. Piano improvisations are Jerome's and Taylor Mead's; the soloist (Monteverdi's ‘Lasciatemi morire!' and Giordani's ‘Caromioben') is Charles Rydell practising, in Cassis; the ocean and most of the wind is the late summer mistral; and so are the cicadas, street music, scooters, motorboats, birds, and my own sing-songing. The text of my Lithuanian ‘song' is, in translation, ‘the sun is setting, the sky is red, I am sitting by the sea and I am singing, by myself.' Those were lonely summers for me, I thought a lot about home. That's why this film, this elegy for Jerome is dedicated ‘to the wind of Lithuania.' Sometimes, though, I had a feeling that Jerome was as much of an exile as was I.”