Month: May 2014

ASU MoveEx: Coming Home

We arrived safely home on Saturday. Now that we’re home, it’s time to share stories, post photos, journal, remember, and take what we learned into whatever comes next! Here are our thoughts on being home.

Ashley: Well this is the final blog post and as I sit in my own bed I feel a sense of sadness not being in Panama anymore. Movement Exchange was something that I knew would elevate my life, but I don’t think I could prepare myself for how much it has affected me. This exchange went beyond movement to places where friends became multiplied, aspirations grew, and self-realizations flourished! I leave Panama knowing that movement is its own language and it brings us together every day as people. I know I will come back to Panama one day and continue those wonderful conversations with all of those who have touched me and even with the landscape surrounding me. It was this moment on the roof staring out, exhausted and awake all at once, that I truly fell in love with Panama and grasped the highest sense of knowing that dance is my form of human communication and always will be. Thank you Movement Exchange for allowing me to learn from you and with you, to teach and be given lessons, and to feel warmth always from the earth, from my heart, and from others.

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Michelle: Movement Exchange has done so much more for me than I have ever expected. It’s really difficult to discuss all of the change and beauty of this trip in a short paragraph. I want to be genuine in everything I say because this has been the most honest trip I have been on. We’ve seen change in the kids, change in ourselves, and transformation in our own hearts. This trip is worth so much to me and I will remember it forever. I want to thank everyone who donated and everyone who made this trip possible for me as I take all that I’ve learned in Panama and bring it back home to Arizona and the kids here. I am truly grateful for the experience and hope to go back next year!

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Elaina: I have never felt the way I feel right now after any trip I have ever been on. Usually deep down I cannot wait to be home because I miss all of my family. To be honest, leaving Panama was incredibly hard for me. I wanted to stay there and continue making these amazing connections with everyone. Maybe I didn’t want to come home because I was having such a great time dancing with everyone and making connectiongs that truly moved my soul, or maybe it is because I honestly feel like we created our own family in Panama as well. I had no idea how life changing this journey with Movement Exchange was going to be. I feel so empowered and strong to do whatever I desire. Yesterday I woke up in tears thinking of all the memories we created, the genuine smiles the children would express, laughing with Nilka, taking care of Tinna’s leg after she cut it on barbed wire, and connecting with every member on the trip.  I am so blessed to have these opportunities, and I cannot thank Movement Exchange enough for creating such an amazing experience. Thank you to all my friends and family who supported me and made this possible. I am forever grateful. I cannot wait to continue teaching dance here in Arizona, and sharing all of our memories with our communities!

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Allyson: Since getting back from Panama I have found myself caught between wanting to keep reliving the past week, and knowing I need to move forward into my life back at home. It is so hard to accept that the trip is already over. The one week we spent in Panama with Movement Exchange contained so much growth, beauty, energy, attention, movement, and transformation, that one week spent at home in the U.S. feels quiet and flat by comparison. Panama was like a bonfire: huge, charged, and bright, fueled by adrenaline, a sense of adventure, and newness, over too soon. Now that I’m back home, I need a different kind of energy, something more internal and sustaining. What I feel motivating me now is a challenge: to take the energy and excitement of Panama and ignite it here at home, in my own community. I want to teach at the Boys and Girls clubs and at studios in Arizona with the same commitment and excitement I felt at Malambo and the Danilo Pérez foundation. I want to dance with the same hunger and drive in my classes here as I did dancing next to the students at the University of Panama. I want to connect to my family, friends, and community with the same depth, intentionality, and love as our group in Panama showed to each other. Movement Exchange showed me what it is to live, move, connect, and give with daring, generosity, and uninhibited joy. This is the light I want to show the world as I move forward into whatever comes next.

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Molly: In my undergrad, our dance organization’s motto was to “dance for the love of dance” and this experience in Panama reminded me to do just that. It reminded me to create spaces where everyone feels comfortable to express themselves fully and take risks with their movements. This thought came from all of the various dance environments we spent time in. Everyone was truly moving for the sake of self-expression. This thought will stay with me as I begin to dance in our AZ community again. I have been inspired by this to create a classroom environment that is always energizing no matter what the subject is. Another take away for me is to stay present, always. I was able to be in each and every moment in Panama which was not something I have found easy in my daily hustle and bustle of life back home. It was a beautiful reminder to fully enjoy each and every experience no matter how small.

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Chareka: Movement Exchange was the most rewarding experience. Immersed in a new culture and establishing cross-cultural relationships was so enriching. Interacting with the kids at the orphanages and teaching urban arts at the University was my favorite part of the trip. Words cannot describe my gratitude and love for the people in Panama. This trip exceeded my expectation on many levels. The community that was cultivated throughout the trip has left an imprint on my heart forever. I will never be the same. It’s difficult to be back in the States and not see the children. What brings me joy is to know that I will always carry each of them in my heart. The smiles and the excitement of the kids blessed my heart in so many ways. Witnessing dance serve as a tool of empowerment for at risk youth has foster a deeper desire to spread love, compassion, and artistic expression throughout the United States. Thanks to Movement Exchange I will NEVER BE THE SAME! God Bless!

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Paola: Well now I’m back here in Arizona and my mind keeps wondering to how wonderful and life changing Panama truly was. I knew before going to Panama that I was going to embark on a life changing journey but I never realized how much it would truly affect my life. My heart is still in Malambo with all the boys and girls that wanted to share the experience of dance with us. Movement has its own language and although I was able to speak in Spanish I knew that my body could potentially speak for itself. Panama taught me how to be humble and to appreciate every single day we have on this earth. It also showed me that living in the moment is the best gift you can give yourself so you are able to fully experience whatever you are taking in. I know the future sometimes is hard to envision because so much can change from now to next year but I KNOW I will end up again in Panama.

Paola blog potst

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Spotlight: Kirsten Torchalski, Move-Ex Pioneer

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1. What is your background in dance?
My training is primarily in classical ballet. I grew up dancing at a studio outside of Chicago and have continued my training in ballet classes at Indiana University and the Colorado Ballet.

2. How did you get involved with Movement Exchange?
During my sophomore year at Indiana University in 2010, I saw a facebook post on our dance co-op’s page asking for someone to lead a volunteer group at IU (Movement Exchange did not even have a name yet!). I jumped at the opportunity and pulled together IU’s first group of Movement Exchange volunteers.

3. What is your fondest memory of your exchange?
I remember returning on my second exchange, and as soon as we walked into the room at Malambo, the girls started doing choreography we had given them the year before.

4. How do you define Dance Diplomat?
A person who uses their talent and passion for dance as a means to influence positive social change in the world.

5. What has Movement Exchange taught you?
I have learned that one person can create an endless flow of impact on others’ lives without ever realizing it. This is a gift all humans have, and it should be used for good.

6. Who is your favorite choreographer?
The great George Balanchine.

7. What is the most compelling performance you have ever seen?
Of all the wonderful ballets I have had the privilege of seeing, the most compelling performance I’ve witnessed was actually seeing Cirque de Soleil live for the first time in July of 2013. The artistry was mesmerizing.

8. What’s your biggest accomplishment so far?
My most significant accomplishment to date was establishing the Indiana University chapter of Movement Exchange, which has grown beyond anything I could have predicted or imagined. I am incredibly proud of the young women and men who have worked relentlessly to grow the chapter’s influence on campus and within the greater community of Bloomington, IN.

9. Where’s the most exotic place you have been?
The San Blas islands in Panama. Staying on an island without plumbing or electricity, and embracing the simplicity and happiness of the people who live there, is an experience I cannot recommend highly enough.

10. How many languages do you speak? Which ones?
I am conversational, but not fluent, in Spanish and Italian.

11. What is one thing on your bucket list?
I would like to live outside of the United States for at least one year.

12. What’s something most people don’t know about you?
Many people don’t realize that I love public speaking.

13. If you could time travel, where and why?
I’d visit the speakeasies of the 1920s.

14. What are some of your other hobbies?
Snowboarding and graphic design.

15. If you had a tagline/motto what would it be?
“Create your own luck.”

16. What three words come to mind when you think of India?
Intriguing, colorful, cultural.

17. Do you think Movement Exchange would be valuable in India? Why?
Yes, Movement Exchange would bring value to the Indian youth and Dance Diplomats alike. When I describe the value of Movement Exchange to others, I refer to Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs. When an individual (or community) is satisfied at the Physiological and Safety levels, they seek fulfillment in Belonging, Self-Esteem, and finally Self-Actualization. The artistic enrichment and relationship-building that Movement Exchanges provides addresses these higher-level needs. I am not an expert on the Indian economy, but my impression is that many of the less developed communities might be right at this level in Maslow’s pyramid, so the youth in these areas would be quite receptive and would benefit from our work. Additionally, it would be a beautiful cultural immersion for our volunteers and would promote cultural exploration for the Indian youth as well.

18. Why do you dance?
Dance is the one thing that simultaneously challenges me and brings me peace.

Miercoles!

Allyson: The most rewarding part of today for me was teaching classes at the Danilo Perez Foundation, an after school music program for at-risk youth. Molly and I taught a rhythm and movement class and the kids were so receptive. I was blown away by the quality of the Danilo Perez Foundation–look it up if you want to be inspired. Although Movement Exchange focuses on dance, Danilo Perez reminded that quality arts education transforms lives, period–no matter the form of expression.  

Molly: I’m not sure where to start with today’s extremely full day because it was all so positive. It’s amazing to bounce between all these different experiences and roles within one day. We were students taking an aerial class, I was a student while fellow dance diplomats taught, I was a tourist at the Panama Canal, I was a teacher and assistant at the Danilo Perez Foundation, and then I got to be one of the girls on a shopping spree at the largest mall in Panama. This pattern isn’t unlike my life in the states, but there’s been a vulnerability that exists within the group that makes my semi-ordinary pattern extraordinary. Everyday here has been rich and I plan to keep that pattern going once I return to the U.S. 

Chareka: Today was FANTASTIC! Words can not describe the excitement that I felt from today! Today was full of new experiences that challenged me as an artist and individual. First, we took an aerial class that was extremely difficult followed by an Urban class taught by Eliana, Michelle, and I at the University of Panama. This class was so enriching and inspiring. It was amazing to see how much the students opened up as the class progressed. I must admit I was impressed by the level of talent present in the classroom. The students were energized and extremely confident. By the end of the class all of the students were free-styling in the cypher (circle). I will never forget this moment as I witnessed each student transform throughout class. It’s amazing to see the power of dance. Lastly, teaching at Danilo Perez Foundation was rewarding. Seeing the smiles on the children faces was all that I could ask for. The children were excited and engaged throughout the entire class. I can not wait to see what the next three days has to offer. 

Michelle: Today was one of my favorite days of the whole trip. I’m usually not this positive but today I definitely am. The aerial class in the morning was so refreshing and eye opening. I’ve never done aerial before and I loved it so much that I will probably do more of it back in Arizona. We then headed over to the University of Panama again and it was my turn to teach. Elaina, Chareka, and I taught an urban class of mostly house, breaking, and waacking. I was really nervous at first because I’ve never taught a university level class and my spanish is not very good at all but they were so receptive and incredibly warm. They made me feel comfortable like we’ve been dancing together for months. I definitely feel like I have grown from the short time that I was in that room with the students. I also tried plantains for the first time in the university cafeteria! After that we went to Panama Canal which was one of the most beautiful views I have ever seen. When I was looking out from the museum it looked like it had to be a painting. It was so vast and beautiful and I feel lucky that I saw it. We then went to the Danillo Perez Foundation where the students had incredible rhythm and discipline. They were some of the most talented kids I have ever worked with and they picked up everything so well. We ended the day with some shawarma that reminded me of home. This day was packed but the best way of describing my feelings at this moment are that I ended a long journey and I can finally have a sigh of relief like the first bite of warm brownies. Today was that kind of delicious. 

Elaina: Today was amazing! The aerial class we took in the morning was so much fun!  Although I was unable to complete any of the moves, I had a blast enjoying the other dancer’s progress. It was such a great atmosphere in the class and everyone was encouraging each other.  After that, we went to teach a class at the university. Michelle, Chareka, and I taught an Urban class and it was so fun! The students there are so passionate and hungry for dance that it truly made this class so uplifting and comforting. At the Danilo Perez Foundation, the kids had so much fun in the classes. It was such a great feeling to be teaching, and all of the students were really enjoying the experience and had giant smiles on their face. Each day has had so many incredible memories, and I am grateful for every person who has made this possible. Also I am so grateful for our lovely leaders; Nisha, Mei-Ling, and Tinna have  inspired me so much with their dedication and constant encouragement. I had a great time today, and an exciting evening talking with our group and laughing together. I cannot wait until tomorrow. 🙂

 

Today was inspiring, extrodinary, fantastic, positive and up-lifting. We are all so grateful for this journey.

Double-Dipping: Two Days, One Post!

Buenas, amigos y familia!
The past two days have been so packed it’s been a challenge for us to find time to write!
Monday began with a high energy Afro-Panamanian dance class with students and guest artists at the University of Panama.Image
Afterwards, we ate at the University cafeteria, where our group was made complete by Paola’s arrival from the airport! Next it was off to Malambo for an afternoon of meeting the girls and teaching classes.Image
panoramic of Malambo
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After dinner (our first time out by ourselves!) Johnny, one of Movement Exchange’s Panamanian dance instructors, treated us to a hip-hop class outside by the ocean. We ended the day with our daily reflection time and then collapsed into bed!
Tuesday (today) began with a jazz class taught by our own Molly Schenck for the first-year dance students at the University, followed by lunch and a group discussion/brainstorm session on classroom management techniques.
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Next came a hike up the gorgeous Cerro Ancon. But halfway up the mountain, tragedy struck and our fearless Panamanian counterpart, Tinna, fell injured when she cut herself on some barbed wire!! We used our resources (baby wipes, a maxi pad, some tape, and stickers) to patch her back together:
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She still had to go to the hospital for a tetanus shot though.
In the late afternoon, we returned to Malambo for what was an especially incredible teaching experience today. We’ll let the pictures do the talking.
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Saying our goodbyes to Malambo this evening was hard for everyone.
This evening offered a little more time to reflect and unwind than the previous night. We all need to unwind. Time is passing so quickly and it is really impossible to believe we are more than halfway through our exchange.
Hasta la próxima,
ASU Move Ex
 

Day 2, Panama!

Allyson Today was our first full day in Panama and it was packed! An hour bus ride to Colón gave us the chance to soak in more of the Panamanian landscape. Stretches of green dotted with brightly colored houses would suddenly open up into ocean and it was absolutely breathtaking. One highlight from the morning was the opportunity to share dance with Jairo, the pasa pasa instructor at Escuelita del Ritmo–after the official “class” we went back and forth teaching our favorite steps. In the afternoon, we jumped in to teaching at Aldea S.O.S. Getting muddy, sweaty, and wet in the rain as we danced outside with the kids, calling out cues in my jumbled Spanish faster than my tongue could keep up, I felt like I was starting to get at the essence of this trip.

Michelle Today the long bus rides were one of my favorite things. We saw what I thought was the heart of Panama in landscapes, colors, and the unique houses and buildings. Many of us did fall asleep on the long bus ride. When we arrived we went to take a pasa pasa class with Jairo first and it felt so at home. He was really welcoming and social in a way that made us all feel almost like we knew him forever. We taught him movement and he taught us movement and it was literally movement exchange. After that we went to Aldea and danced with so many kids. There was a language barrier for me but the kids were accepting and they tried everything. We danced in the rain with the kids and it felt good to get dirty outside and just not care about anything with dance. I will miss the kids because we will not be returning to Aldea but it was a beautiful start to the rest of the week despite some challenges and ups and downs. 

Chareka: Today was AMAZING! We had the opportunity to take a pass pasa class, I must admit that this was the perfect class to start the week off. Jairo, was a fantastic teacher and his energy was contagious. I enjoyed the exchanged that happen between us and him. We were able to teach him some movements as well as learn his style of movement. After we took class we went to an orphanage called Aldea and danced with the children. Words can not describe the joy and excitement I had for these children. Although it rained majority of the day I am so glad we did not let allow the rain to stop us from having a good time. In fact the rain motivated us to dance with even more passion. The children at the orphanage were beautiful, talented, and precious. There was no greater feeling than being with those kids and witnessing the smile on their faces. My desire is to use dance as a tool of empowerment and I can definitely say that was accomplished today. I look forward to the rest of the week!

Ashley: Today was so unbelievable! Being from Arizona I do not often get to see greenery and and water so being in this environment brought me to a place of awe. The pasa pasa class with Jairo was part of the day the reminded me to always approach things as a student as well and have that thirst to always do more. The climax of the day was entering Aldea and being with the children! I’m finding myself really loving the hospitality of the people here, their warmth allows for me to open up and soak up the experience. The kids were so beautiful in the way that they approached all the movement. I just feel so blessed to interact with people that have open hearts willing to express through dance! I know the rest of the week will bring more and more joy into my life. 

Elaina: I am falling more in love with Panama everyday. The smiles of the children were so heart warming. Although there was a language barrier, I felt really welcomed  and had a great time teaching. I think that best part of today was seeing how excited the children were to dance. I loved how eager they were to learn and I was blown away by how great they danced. The pasa pasa class with Jairo was so much fun! I was able to just let go of everything and just indulge myself in having fun with dance. It is crazy to think that we have only taught for one day and only taken one class and I have already learned so much. I am so grateful to be here. This is really such an amazing experience and I am so blessed to be surrounded by encouraging people. Also, I hope to impress my Nana when I return with my knowledge of spanish!:)

Molly: Today was full of dancing for the love of dance! Starting with Jairo’s Pasa Pasa class. I loved learning this form together and seeing how everyone navigated the new moves. He put each of us on the spot to dance in the center of our circle and teach at the front of the class; this forced each of us to let go and just dance. Dancing with the kids at Aldea was inspiring in the same sense as well. They just went for the movement and broke through any hesitancy they had with it. Also, we danced in the rain which was so refreshing on so many levels. We had a somewhat lengthy road trip to and from these locations as well. Watching the scenery change from one part of the country to the other was breathtaking. The sights, sounds, and culture are in such contrast to what my daily life looks like, and it is just what I needed. Taking time away from the busy culture I’ve come accustom to and just taking the time to be present my others and myself certainly puts life back into perspective. 

Today for all of us was : Amazing, freeing, cleansing, courage, sharing, and eye-opening.

Movement Exchange ASU: Arrival in Panama!

Hello from the ASU Movement Exchange chapter on our first day with Movement Exchange in Panama!

Today we arrived safely in Panama after a long night of traveling! We were welcomed at the airport by Mei Ling, Nisha, and Tinna and Tio René, our bus driver for the week. The rest of the day was a mix of settling in to our hostel, getting comfortable, getting oriented, and eating delicious Panamanian food. Tomorrow, we will start in earnest: we will be traveling to Colon to teach our first classes at Escuelita del Ritmo and the Aldea SOS youth center, as well as taking a traditional Pasa Pasa dance class! Tonight we are winding down with reflection, reviewing for our classes tomorrow, and of course, blogging here!

For the rest of the week we’ll be posting every day, each person sharing a few words about what was most meaningful, exciting, or challenging in the day. Stay tuned!

Ashley: The most thrilling part of the first day for me was to experience the architecture of Panama City, Old Panama City, and Casco Viejo. I found the colors and french influence to be breath taking and made sure to take as many pictures as I possibly could. The rushing of movement on central avenue was strangely soothing and I appreciated that!

Chareka: Today was fantastic! I truly enjoyed touring and taking pictures of Panama City. The food was delicious and the people here are polite and so welcoming. Panama is extremely diverse and today was such a great first day. Mei Ling, Nisha, Tinna, and Tio Rene’ are super encouraging and has made the transition from the U.S to Panama extremely smooth. I am looking forward to the many adventures here in Panama but most importantly, I am excited to teach and work with the children in the orphanages.

Elaina: My first day in Panama!:) I am so excited to be here and I cannot express how welcoming everyone has been. The food is so yummy and the architecture is gorgeous. I am so excited to begin teaching tomorrow. I can only imagine what an impact the youth will have in my life, and I pray that I can inspire them just as much as I know they will inspire me.  I am truly honored to be a member of such an incredible organization!

Allyson: As always, the first day of arrival feels like a blur of new sights, smells, colors, sounds, and flavors. Mei Ling and Nisha and Tinna, our Panamanian counterpart from the University of Panama, have really been our anchors today. From welcoming us at the airport with huge smiles and hugs, to guiding us throughout the day, their positive energy and excitement can’t help but rub off. The air here is rich, thick with voices, music spinning out of open doorways, car horns, smells of fish and the ocean and delicious food cooking, and of course, the humidity! I can’t wait to keep soaking it all in for the rest of the week.

Molly: This is unreal! I cannot believe we’re in Panama. It feels like yesterday we were talking about this and now here it is! Walking around the streets today and taking it all in has been a beautiful experience. Soaking up the new sights and sounds has been a highlight of the day (and the food). I normally take a ton of pictures, but instead I’m taking in the moment and just soaking everything in that I can. I also took some voice memos today while walking around (stole the idea from Allyson) and my favorite sound of the day was a elderly man singing near the vendors. He kept repeating, “welcome to Panama” and it was perfect.

Michelle: I truly did not think that I would be here in Panama right now. Something vivid that struck me as I was taking the walking tour with the other girls was how grateful I was to be here and even though I did not fundraise the entire amount, every penny I spent was worth it. That moment was really important to me because I know that this trip is going to transform me. As nervous as I am, I am really excited for the coming week as well as learning from the kids as they learn from me. I’m excited to grow. Today was definitely a comforting and warm welcome to the coming craziness of the week. Altogether, today I feel grateful, hopeful, excited, nervous, and somewhat emotional about what this whole trip is going to become.

For all of us, today was about: Being present. Eating delicious food. Warmth (both from the weather and from others). Community. Gratitude. Feeling fantastic.

Spotlight: Juan Carlos Claudio, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Modern Dance, University of Utah

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1. What is your background in dance?
I danced professionally with the Ririe-Woodbury Dance Company for over 10 years, SB Dance for over 15 years, one year with Seán Curran Company and Keith Johnson & Dancers in New York. I am currently a full time faculty member in the Department of Modern Dance at the University of Utah. My research emphasis is in Social Justice and Community Engagement through Dance.

2. How did you get involved with Movement Exchange?
I discovered a poster pertaining to an open call for Movement Exchange at the University of Utah. After reading through it I was immediately interested and wanted to get more information. I was able to speak to Anna Pasternak and knew I just had to be involved in any way I could. Her bravery, dedication and enthusiasm were contagious.

3. What is your fondest memory of your exchange?
My fondest memories over the last three years of the exchanges have been watching the transformation that took place within my students. They all looked like scared little chicks when they began the exchange and within a matter of two weeks they grew into self assured artists and compassionate individuals. I also loved seeing them break walls of stereotypes, shedding assumptions and embracing confidence with the unknown. They were no longer afraid… of anything.

4. How do you define Dance Diplomat?
To me a Dance Diplomat is an individual who embraces differences, understands diversity, acknowledges the possibility for change, is inclusive and promotes social justice as well as civic engagement through the medium of dance.

5. What has Movement Exchange taught you?
I am a testament that the experiences provided by the Movement Exchange teaches one to be caring, complete acceptance of others, humility, collaboration, reciprocity, understanding and most of all LOVE!

6. Who is your favorite choreographer?
I can’t just name one because I have so many, but some of my favorite choreographers are Pina Bausch, Wayne McGregor, Crystal Pite and Ohad Naharin.

7. What is the most compelling performance you have ever seen?
I served as a student assistant to the Dance Theatre Wuppertal during the creation of Nur Du by Pina Bausch while attending UCLA in 1995. Due to the relationship and deep connection I developed with the dancers, every time I see the company on stage it is like seeing my family members doing exactly what they love. It is truly moving and I get overwhelmed with joy each time I have the opportunity to see a performance.
Another company that gets my creative juices flowing when I see their performances is DV8. The use of character development, props and theatricality are both stunning and innovative.

8. What’s your biggest accomplishment so far?
Wow… I think I have been very blessed over the past five years. A few of my most memorable accomplishments are being nominated Student Teaching Choice Professor of the Year Award at the University of Utah in 2009, Favorite Teacher of the Year by the Chi Omega in 2013, University of Utah’s Community Engaged Scholar of the Year 2014, and of course having the opportunity to engage in community dance practice. Directing the Panamá Dance and Cultural Exchange in partnership with Movement Exchange Organization has literally changed my life.

9. Where’s the most exotic place you have been?
The most exotic place I have visited would have to be the Island of Bali. Bali is an island full of art, history, mystery, beauty and the simplicity of life.

10. How many languages do you speak? Which ones?
I speak 2 languages fluently, English and Spanish.

11. What is one thing on your bucket list?
To adopt children. I have always wanted to be a father. I want to have the opportunity to teach, provide, share, and unselfishly love my children and guide them into a fruitful, confident and successful adulthood.

12. What’s something most people don’t know about you?
This is a tough question for me. I consider myself to be a very honest and transparent person. With that being said I guess I would have say that I don’t particularly like secrets.

13. If you could time travel, where and why?
Japan because I love sushi and Bali because I have always wanted to share its beauty with my spouse.

14. What are some of your other hobbies?
Cleaning my house, good sushi and good wine with friends, traveling the world and being in nature.

15. If you had a tagline/motto what would it be?
Be honest, be true, be you!

16. What three words come to mind when you think of India?
Colors, Eyes and Food.

17. Do you think Movement Exchange would be valuable in India? Why?
Absolutely, there is so much dancing in India but it also belongs to a specific social class. I have studied Indian dance and their cast system. There is so much we could learn about Indian dance that would ultimately help us understand the history and culture of India.

18. Why do you dance?
I dance because it sets me free. I dance because it heals my wounded soul. I dance because there is nothing more genuine and original than the moving body. I dance because I like to celebrate the most important and sacred thing given to us by god, the human body.