As a transnational fusion dance artist, Donna Mejia distinctive aesthetic dialogs the secular dances of North Africa and the Arab World with American Hip Hop dance and sub-genres of electronic dance. Donna also teaches the Brazilian Silvestre Dance Technique and is a primary representative after twenty years of practice. Donna received her Master of Fine Arts degree from Smith College on full fellowship, has been a guest artist in residence for eighteen colleges. In October of 2011 she was selected by the Fulbright Association to present the 2011 Selma Jeanne Cohen Endowed lecture for International Scholarship in Dance, notably for her paper “Digital Diasporas and Transnational Dance Communities: The Effects of the Internet on Identity Formation and Collective Cultural Memory.” She joined the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Theatre and Dance department in 2012 as the first Assistant Professor of tribal fusion dance globally. Donna continued her research on Digital Diasporas by producing the first academic Viral Dance Colloquium in 2014 (CU Boulder) and is currently working on several writing projects. She was the 2013 keynote speaker for Syracuse University’s Symposium on Public Diplomacy and was selected by USA Today as a prominent artist in their review of new images of Black Women in contemporary media (February 2015). Donna was the choreographer and solo dancer featured in the 2015 NYC off-Broadway production of 11 Reflections on September, and performed the show at the venerable LaMama Theatre (three week run), The Apollo Theater, and The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. She balances her time teaching and touring internationally to teach, lecture, and perform for private sponsors, festivals and community organizations. (http://donnainthedance.wordpress.com/)
Cues & Tattoos 2018 Workshops
Thursday April 5th, 2018, 9:30 am – 5:30 pm (includes a two hour lunch break)
Hunger and Wonder: An Imersion with Donna Mejia
Immersions allow dedicated time to excavate down to new stimuli, new perspectives, new flavors, new sensations, new patterns, and new insights. I do not consider the body to be an obstacle to intellectual or spiritual growth. To the contrary, I have experienced the body to be a magnificent sensory instrument of consciousness; a wise and truthful partner in the deepening exploration of self. You are warmly invited to come to “planet Donna” for a day to refresh your intellectual explorations, link deeply to your intelligent body, and reconnect to artistic hunger. We will indulge three hours of somatic work in the morning, two hours of full-bodied transnational fusion dance in the afternoon, and take one culminating hour to converse about the questions and insights flooding to the surface of your mind. A generous packet of resources and writings will be provided as part of your registration. As always, I promise the best music in the universe, abundant opportunities for laughter and nothing less than radical honesty. Please bring a yoga mat, a tennis ball, a notebook, your most confounding questions and your sense of humor. I pledge to give you my absolute best… please come geek-out with me!
Friday April 6th, 2018, 5:30 pm -7:30 pm- Club Donna
Set your alarm and come ready to move to thick, pulverizing, chunky beats from international electronic and hip hop music from the underground Arab, Persian, Turkish, Parisian, North African and American communities. Donna’s nonstop class is designed to transport you to new heights while in the company of the moon… you will forget that old bed was ever waiting for you! Be prepared for ballistic beats and spirited movement. Bare feet and athletic clothing will work best. Public Notice: This class will feature the best underground funk, international hip hop and electronica in the known universe. You have been warned.
Sunday April 8th, 2018, 10:00 am -12:00 pm- Impulse, Momentum, and Fluidity
This class will explore continuums of movements: the uninterrupted flow of movement in both the standing body (transferred as waves) and traveling body (progressions across the floor). We will investigate the idea of obstructions or default movement habits. Our class objective is NOT to create a specific style or aesthetic of dance. Rather, we will workshop our way through common patterns of resistance. Participants can expect a substantial and vigorous warm up (please bring a yoga mat), followed by short phrases of choreography danced across the room. We will give special focus to traveling patterns in the feet, and integration of hip/torso work in conjunction with traveling. Building confidence with improvisation and perpetuity is what we’re aiming for. As always, I promise the best music in the universe (!), respect for your dignity as a participant, honesty, and much laughter during our “laboratory” time together.