It has been a challenging year a half since returning from my Fulbright Fellowship to Israel in August 2015. I survived reverse culture shock and interpersonal struggles at work and at home and got some hard earned life lessons along the way. I made some new pieces for my dance company and schools in Marin, and was deeply unsure about where to take my artistic career next. I actually enrolled in a bunch of science classes once If I Were You – Project Israel was over thinking that I was going to change careers completely. I thought I was done with dance. Once you finish such a large undertaking it is inevitable that you feel the pang of emptiness, the void, and the lack of target, needing to find something new and right to aim at. I went to the depths, to the bottom of my well, and it took a lot for me to resurface.
Ultimately I realized that I am a dancer through and through and I need to create, always. I also need to connect through teaching and I need stability in my work life. Freelance is exhausting after five years. So I decided to work towards consolidating my life, to shift my career so I can focus my efforts on one studio or one organization and be more impactful. I ultimately took a giant leap of faith and decided to get my M.F.A. in Dance from Mills College in Oakland. This was not an easy decision, to choose student loan debt and commuting through rush hour traffic every day, not to mention the physical strain of training and teaching 8+ hours a day 6 days a week. It is the right decision, even though every day is a new challenge. I can’t believe how much I was able to accomplish in my first semester. Sheer will power and determination can take a human being farther than we think. I am set to graduate in May 2018.
It was a deep honor for me to perform in Shinichi Iova-Koga’s Cascade of Moons in my first semester of graduate school. My work in and experience with this piece affirms my devotion to dance and the disciplined mind I am interested in cultivating for more powerful stage presence.
I have grown up a lot in the past few months, and thank Shinichi for being such an incredible role model as an artist and teacher. Next semester will be even better.
I have ripened.
Happy new year.
May we never forget the Dance that is always here for us.
I am honored to be dancing in a never before seen baroque opera from 1679 entitled “The Amazons in the Fortunate Isles,” with a new opera company called Ars Minerva. I will be working under the choreographic direction of Muriel Maffre, former principal dancer of the San Francisco Ballet. This is my operatic debut and I could not be more thrilled to work with such an esteemed and respectable cast of artists!
Performances are May 21st and 22nd at the Marines Memorial Theater in San Francisco. Type in the code SINGERS in order to receive a 30% discount on orchestra seats.
See you there!
2015 burned bright for me. It burned away old patterns and beliefs, biases, and illusions of separation. It burned away guilt and shame and fortified self love and generosity above all. All of this, the stuff of transformation, came from relationships with some of the most amazing people I have ever met. So thank you Mike Shine, Rossi Lamont Walter, Shyrine Ziadeh, Jonathan Konsh, Mate Moray, Eric Shuman, Liliana Carrizo, Marina Hotchkiss, Bob Feder, David Feder, Cindy Feder, Mark Janes, The Fulbright Program, Gay Lynch, Deborah Friedes Galili, and everyone I danced with this year, for helping me to become more of who I am.
My hope for 2016 is that we can all give ourselves a pat on the back more often and thank ourselves for everything it takes to be an imperfect human on this planet. I hope we can all learn from our mistakes and keep on creating a world we love that loves us back. Cheers to a new year of self assurance and shameless creativity! Whoop!
“One must still have chaos in oneself to be able to give birth to a dancing star.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein
A big THANK YOU! goes out to all of our Kickstarter donors. We exceeded our fundraising goal thanks to the generosity of our dance community. Rehearsals are full steam ahead. We hope to see you at the shows!
IOCB Season 3 Cast
Help me bring my Fulbright research to LIFE by making a donation to
Inside Out Contemporary Ballet’s
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ONE LOVE, ONE DANCE ❤
Days like today are rare and sacred and it is one that I will never forget. My experience of today shed light on a painful and confusing journey that has been my Fulbright experience and allowed me to see why it was all worth it. I came to Israel on a dream, a dream to dance and learn Gaga, a dream that took me four years to accomplish. Dreams are as elusive as dance. They surprise and attack you, and through the discovery of following their lead, you ultimately build faith in your personal pursuit of truth. The reality of my dream to come to Israel has been nothing like the dream I set out to achieve. And somehow, it has been everything that I needed. Success is a funny character and I measure myself all the time. This year my successes take the form of abstract renderings of the very things that I have failed to do. I came to Israel in hopes of redeeming a missed opportunity to become a certified Gaga teacher in 2011. I did not succeed in obtaining certification, but the redemption happened nonetheless. Today I lead the students of the Steps Dance School of Movement and the Performing Arts through a demo-lecture showcasing GYROKINESIS exercises, pointe exercises, and contemporary rep on pointe, all of which were quite new for the students. And where did this demo-lecture take place? In the Batsheva Dance Company Studio Varda, the very place that my dream was first born. Needless to say, the completion of this dream cycle is profound for me. I left tonight’s demo-lecture with a gift which consisted of a box filled with tiny boxes containing love notes to dance and to me from each of my students. When they presented this gift to me at the end of the performance it was a total surprise. They were speaking in Hebrew and I wasn’t even aware that I was being honored until one of my students nudged me to look across the room. I couldn’t believe it. I smiled and cried as I gave every single one of these twenty-five sweaty post-performance dancers a true hug of gratitude. They helped me complete this abstract messy dream. They helped bring my experience full circle. Their love of dance, their love of learning, their enthusiasm and kindness, redeemed my struggle, and in this moment I felt whole again. It was truly beautiful, ballet in batsheva. And it was mine.