Illuminations Dance Company is a collection of movement artists who take some of the most pressing issues of our time and creates insightful and narrative dance performances. Our latest pieces have been Transitional Justice, The Sahel: A Crack In The Heart, Hallowed, and Disappeared.
For more information about each of these pieces and the press kit click on the following links.
Click Here For Transitional Justice
Click Here For The Sahel A Crack In The Heart
Click Here For Hallowed
Click Here For Disappeared
Illuminations goes to some of the red hot areas both nationally and internationally. While away from home we meet with various communities to research, create movement and deepen our awareness. Our research brings us closer to each community we enter as we learn the struggles of each, their desires for change, and how each community approaches their individual trials. We create movement with community members that expresses, and hopefully releases, not only their frustrations and fears, but also their wisdom, passion and joys. This helps deepen communication abroad and also brings cultural information home to the USA.
Highlights of our work:
A Step Towards Change
A Workshop with The Sarakasi Dance Trust in Nairbobi, Kenya
Two of us from Illuminations Dance Co. flew to Nairobi where we were honored to work with The Sarakasi Dance Trust. Many of the dancers are from the Kibera slums and have tremendous insights into based off of their experiences.
Within the workshop there were two parts. We staged Illuminations' piece, The Sahel: A Crack In The Heart, on The Sarakasi Dance Trust. We also led a choreography workshop that led to the creation of two new pieces, which were choreographed by The Sarakasi Dance Trust.
Most of the dancers had never had the opportunity to choreograph. We started with discussion on what issues were most pressing to them and what they would want to change in Kenya to make it a better place. Water continuously came up. Also, within the company there are dancers of different tribes, which led us to a very careful discussion on ethnic tension that currently exists and how we can start dealing with it in the dance studio.
Then we started to build movement that connected to these themes. For instance, the dancers figured out a way to simulate a water pump with their physicality. Through movement, we showcased how political corruption and climate change connected to lack of water and the pressing need to move in a different direction. The dancers also created a piece on war reflecting ethnic tensions and showing the loss of lives that Kenya had recently experienced.
After leading several choreography workshops and hours of rehearsal we created the performance, A Step Towards Change. It featured three pieces. Two of which were created by The Sarakasi Dance Trust and the third by Illuminations.
For more information on the Sarakasi Dance Trust: http://www.sarakasi.org
A Dance Performance on November 14th with Guest Speaker Marcie Mersky, from The International Center of Transitional Justice and Christopher Coleman from The United Nations.
Last November, we created a piece called Transitional Justice. Transitional Justice explores retribution, justice and forgiveness as pertains to countries where the governments are going through fundamental transitions. We created heartfelt movement that brought some of peoples' most traumatic experiences to life.
We were fortunate to have Marcie Mersky from the International Center of Transitional Justice come and speak at the performance. In her speech on Guatamala she said, "At the end of those two years I felt that I had walked through the valley of the shadow of death, but I hadn't, they had. And I could not fathom truly, how they continued to live, to struggle to make new lives, to make sense of the evil that had befallen them. And of course that raised many questions. Where does that evil come from? How do we heal? What does it even mean to heal after that?"
To hear Marcie's full speech and the introduction by Chris Coleman: https://vimeo.com/189257789
To get more information on Transitional Justice: http://www.ictj.org