It’s show week. I can’t believe it’s finally here after over a year of dreaming, planning and bringing the vision to fruition. It’s an amazing process of research, detail, bringing the right people on board and developing the story. However, for me, the best part about producing shows is bringing people of different styles, ages and levels of dance together to unite for the cause.
Society separates us. It’s our natural tendency to keep our distance from those who are different than us. The young aren’t given many opportunities to relate to those older than them and older people are often scared of how to relate to young people. Sometimes in the dance world, contemporary dancers find hip hoppers undisciplined and unruly. Hip Hop dancers think they’re too stiff. Artists of various disciples such as art, music, film and dance are often by themselves in their corners doing their own thing, too busy to notice the potential that could be unleashed if they discovered collaboration with one another. In the city I live in, even MC’s, DJ’s, dancers and graf artists find themselves living in the same hip hop culture, but separated from one another.
Yet, there is something special that happens when we come together; when we look up and notice others around us who can add to the synergy. One of my choreographers and team members, Chelsea Jones, said it well, “We were born to work in community.” My business partner for Mpact, Oliver Reyes, often says, “Relationships first, then business.” These are the people I work with. They get it.
When you look at a stage floor before it has any props placed on it, you see only a flat surface. What a beautiful picture of the invitation it gives for all to be on the same level. Though some dancers are more advanced than others, the stage brings the expert and novice together to stand without hierarchy. Without effort, the stage includes all, embraces all, and welcomes all. Its very stature isn’t elite. It’s only requirement is that you create something beautiful, something meaningful – and that you do it together.
This concept of the stage was brought to my attention by my friend Charity. I couldn’t think of a better way to describe one of the deepest core values of my company, Mpact. We embrace others contributions and celebrate it. To us, it’s a joy to bring out potential in others and provide this kind of platform for choreographers who share this vision.
This week, choreographers, dancers, artists, film makers, singers, and MC’s come together on the Theatre Grand stage in Calgary to advocate for women’s social issues. If you’re in the Calgary area, we invite you to come. You can find out more about our show Invisible here.
Whatever we do in this life, may we create through the power of community and collaboration. If we do, what we do will not only go further than we imagined, but what we do will have lasting legacy.