They say the best gifts are the ones you make yourself. The time, energy and thoughtfulness put into a handmade item is forever ingrained within it, making it truly unique. Here at DancerMusic, some of the best gift makers we know are the ones that create dance. These choreographers often spend countless hours in the studio creating movement, plus an ample amount of time researching and reflecting to refine what they make. No two creations are ever quite the same, and become more unique when you consider that no two performances of the same piece of choreography are identical. As the dancers are given more opportunities to rehearse and perform a piece, they are able to discover its connection and relevance in their own lives, creating new emotional depth and dynamic. Furthermore, the gift of a dance is one that keeps on giving to each and every audience member who gets to experience it. While it may be choreographed for and inspired by a single individual, dance is a thing whose nature is to be shared, and the dancers at Nomi Dance Chicago cannot wait to do just that at this year’s Dance for Life.
Last year, Nomi Dance Company commissioned choreographer Joshua Blake Carter to create Kim, a work inspired by and made for his mother. The combination of Joshua’s careful choreography and the powerful, captivating women of Nomi produced a gift unlike any other. It is this choreographic gift, Kim, that Nomi Dance Company will be bringing to this year’s Dance for Life. Now that the piece has been in the company’s repertoire for a season, we can only imagine how it has evolved since its debut and what strength, beauty and emotion lie just behind the curtain at the Auditorium Theater.
DancerMusic caught up with Nomi Artistic Director Laura Kariotis and Rehearsal Director Stephanie Cihlar, as well as choreographer Joshua Blake Carter to find out more about Kim. Here’s what they told us through this 4PHOTOS:
We seek and create partnerships with outside artists in the Chicago dance community that provide our city an accessible means to see dance performed at the highest level.
“Nomi is a company of strong, independent, forward-thinking and eclectic artists. Each of the women in Nomi felt very connected to and were incredibly honored to perform this work! Kim is the second work Joshua Blake Carter has set on the company, and it far exceeded my expectations to bring a work of this magnitude to celebrate both women and Nomi’s milestone anniversary.
We seek and create partnerships with outside artists in the Chicago dance community that provide our city an accessible means to see dance performed at the highest level. We are so grateful for the incredible relationship we have built with Joshua, and we knew this would be a wonderful addition to Dance for Life 2018!” — Laura Kariotis, Artistic Director of Nomi Dance Company
We feel them take charge of their journey and stand up for themselves (unintentionally, but literally) by the end of this section.
“The real Kim is my mother for whom I created the work. It also celebrates every woman who has faced so many obstacles leaving her no other choice than to recreate and reinvent herself time after time. ‘Everybody knows a Kim.’
This photo is from a section from Kim called ‘Boiling Point.’ It is a pivotal shift for the characters in the piece. We feel them take charge of their journey and stand up for themselves (unintentionally, but literally) by the end of this section.” – Joshua Blake Carter
The unique score and explosive full ensemble movement seen here truly captures the feelings of coming out the other side of personal trauma not defeated but empowered.
“Joshua Blake Carter is one of the most generous choreographers we’ve had the pleasure of working with. He gives so much of himself both to his work and the dancers themselves; that makes for a uniquely intimate and personal experience as a dancer and as an audience member, which is especially evident in this work.
The unique score and explosive full ensemble movement seen here truly captures the feelings of coming out the other side of personal trauma not defeated but empowered.” — Stephanie Cihlar, Rehearsal Director-Nomi Dance Company
We truly believe this work is a great representation of the strong statement women are making in the world today.
“Nomi utilizes outside elements and joins forces with like-minded artists, companies and choreographers to keep performances both refreshing and innovative. Simply put, Nomi Dance Company is entertainment – straightforward and unadulterated.
We truly believe this work is a great representation of the strong statement women are making in the world today. It’s important to continue to celebrate women and push for a culture of equality and respect!” — Laura Kariotis, Artistic Director Nomi Dance Company
Nomi Dance Company appears in the 27th annual Dance for Life celebration on Saturday, August 18 at 7:30pm at Chicago’s Auditorium Theatre (50 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago, IL). Tickets are available online from the Auditorium Theatre or by phone from the Auditorium Box Office at 312.341.2300.