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By Chisato Iversen

June 6, 2016 (San Diego) -- Visionary Dance Theatre showcased Shadoworx, an amazing dance performance choreographed by Natalia Valerdi-Rogers on May 27 and 28th.  All the dancers were stunning. They could really convey their emotions through to the audience. They were able to go from sad and forlorn to sassy and quirky to soft and delicate. The dancers ranged from children to adults.

Each dance routine portrayed a different message, a different story. The dance performances ranged from to slow and forlorn, to high energy, to influential. Her inspirations are as varied as “La Rumorosa,” a treacherous highway that is also a sacred ground to Native Americans, to a recurring dream, to her child’s dance class, to old antique stripped chairs, to the Tibetan Nuns Project. She was fascinated when she heard the Nuns chant, thus creating Mara and Mara’s Daughters. In Tibet, they had just graduated the first class of Buddhist nuns after 21 years of studying. For the final piece, they started off with a video called Mara, then with a dance piece that goes with the film called Mara’s Daughters. She states that choreography is “really a way of looking at the world...I always see the world with movement and choreography,” and her vast amount of inspirations is an indication of this.


Shadoworx was staged in the City of San Diego’s City Heights Annex managed by Nigel Brookes. He is helping putting together a new space for diverse communities of San Diego County including artistic resources and performance spIMG_2973.JPGaces. Brooks envisions possibilities for people from the community to create art, TV, programs, or their own YouTube channel.

“The long term goal is to bring in arts organization and educational organizations to help mentor and teach the community and to collaborate with them essentially-to bring in people who want to do professional level work and to work with the community to help them create sort of an incubator for people, so that people who want to learn how to do this kind of work can do it here,” he stated. You can contact him at  NBrookes@sandiego.gov for more information.

Visionary Dance Theatre was founded in 2009 by artistic director Spencer Powell with the vision of giving back to the community by providing high quality dance training to all, regardless of means. It has grown to include both an acclaimed professional dance company and professional theatre company, but Powell has never lost sight of his original vision saying, “It’s all so our students can grow up and grow and into” roles with these professional dance companies.

Visionary Dance Theatre is a new addition to La Mesa, East County. After previous theatre in El Cajon Boulevard, they now have three studios and an administrative space.“It’s perfect for us,” Powell stated.

They have several line ups prepared for their new dance season. For one night, they will perform Chicago with City Ballet Orchestra. The performance will take place in  late August. The show will be a fundraiser for scholarships for dance students. In the second week of September they will present a dance called “SOMES” for which they are hard at work on a series of athletic dances.

The Shadoworx dance performance was dedicated to a young student, Ricky Morris of Visionary Dance Theatre, who recently unfortunately passed away due to an accident. In his honor, they have started a scholarship for young male dancers. The scholarship auditions will be on June 11th and callbacks will be on June 18th at their studio on 8693 La Mesa Blvd, La Mesa, CA, 91942.

For more information, visit Visionary’s website at http://visionarydancetheatre.org/Visionary/

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