specialsOkay…so we rolled up the carpet and packed it away after THIS IS DANCE. Our success story lasted on fundraiser and one production, but it was a good one. A lot has happened in that time. Jasmine moved to Halifax, NS and then back to Cambridge, ON, acquiring an under grad degree in architecture through much hard work and intense periods of creativity. She is now working towards her Masters. I, Krista, moved to Edmonton and is currently finishing up a diploma in Arts and Cultural Management at Macewan University. I’m still dancing and choreographing, and in fact, producing shows! While it isn’t a Creative Republic show (this time around) it does maintain the same underlying principles. Emily Poirier is finishing her Bachelor of Dance from York University and continues to dance with Corpus, with who you can see her with at Canada Dance Festival in June. And Mor Bar-Zakai is making it rain awesomeness in Tel Aviv, Israel.

While Jasmine builds a master’s degree…and possibly a house…she has given me the reigns to take on projects under The Creative Republic. My first project: writing about my dance experience in Edmonton. It has been on my mind for almost two years now, and definitely is influenced by a wise and talented artist in Toronto – thank you Heidi Strauss for the boost and suggestion (a year ago). If you didn’t know, I’m a bit of a procrastinator and I like to sit on things for a while. A lot has happened and a lot has changed in Edmonton and in my life personally. I feel that this is the best place to share my thoughts and experiences about dance.

Where is this sudden burst coming from…in the middle of final papers, projects, rehearsals, dog-walking, wedding-planning, internship-prepping, school-dance-program-making, working, general merriment…from a weekend full of dance, dance, dance! I’m no writer, but take it or leave it, I’m here to have a conversation about it, so please comment.

The tip of the iceberg:
Nothing like raw emotion and the desire to perform to get a dancer to put on her writing cap! I just returned from a youth dance ensemble show. The company is called Entrelacement Dance, directed by Tatiana Cheladyn, and the movement was created almost entirely by these young artists. And, it was invigorating to watch them.  I sat and smiled at their intricate details, seconds of terror where something didn’t go as planned, and their recovery into pure, physical joy. I smiled and thought, That is what dance is about, it’s about the passion and the joy.
Now, I’m not talking choreography here nor artistic development. I’m talking just of the dance, the movement, the act of living through your physical body. And these dancers were doing it, all to varying degrees, but they were doing it. This was great because I often find myself struggling to see the passion in what is being performed in contemporary dance these days. And even if the passion is there I get sidetracked by choreography, or lack of it, or lack of care to detail and audience. But I wasn’t side tracked because I could not bring myself to judge artists so young and so creative. So, maybe this makes me a bit biased because I’m giving way for these young artists, giving them the head-start because they haven’t yet felt defeated by the dance scene. But then again, while I sit here in my own dancer pity party, I’m not here to complain. I here to congratulate these artists on their talent. And their ability to pull a gal, who is ever so grateful for the dance community, out of her cynic-funk and back into belief that dance is a choice. And it is raw. And it is full of passion. And it can be seen in many, may lights. So, as I head into a week of non-stop schedule collisions and rehearsals, I thank these young artists for wiping away the protective layer around my hardened heart and reminding me of why I love what I do.