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Why a Festival?



My husband Stephen and I first discussed starting a Festival years ago.  At that time SUMMERDANCE Santa Barbara (which focused on bringing major contemporary companies to the community) was in full swing and we didn't think there was space in the community for a smaller Festival that catered to the needs of lesser known artists doing outstanding work.  Now that that organization has shifted focus the time now seems ripe.

In recent years I've come to realize that some of THE most important work being done in the field of contemporary dance, physical theater, & other movement genres, is being done by the brave souls who create opportunities for others by producing Festivals and Showcases.  They do the work of producing, presenting, and getting the audience there, the artists make the work and get themselves there, and magic, wonder, fulfillment, connection, and inspiration happens in a HUGE way!

For those of us who aren't in the major league of the field of the Movement Arts getting our work out there into other communities is a REALLY challenging puzzle to figure out.  One may make meaningful and inspiring work, but if you aren't a part of the mainstream, getting an audience to come share in the magic can be difficult.  I have a friend (a brilliant artist) who took some work to NYC to perform at the Merce Cunningham space with another brilliant artist form L.A. and nobody sadly showed up to the show.  They were well publicized, had a lot of support in that way.  Why?  Neither she nor her friend were connected to the NYC scene, they were unknown, hence nobody showed.
 
It is connection to community that brings the collaborators as an audience into the theater to be a part of the beauty and wonder of moving through time and space together as a fused soulful experience.
 
So, one can not help but be inspired by the work of others.  Rather than set as a goal producing an evening of my own work I thought, why not create a festive & growthful experience by inviting other artists to share their work with.  Sure it will probably be 10 times as much work but I'm sure 10 times as rewarding and 10 times as much fun.

I asked Kim T. Davis if she wanted to join me as a Co-Producer & Co-Creator and she instantaneously said yes joining Stephen and I in the process of birthing our first Festival!

Wahooo!!!

Hope to see you there...

Misa Kelly


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