Called “one of the most talked-about companies nationwide” by the L.A. Times, BODYTRAFFIC is an innovative frontrunner in today’s dance landscape. The center is privileged to welcome this technical and trailblazing group to our stage on February 11–12. To better understand BODYTRAFFIC’s mission and style, we asked dancer Tiare Keeno a few questions about her experience with the company.
How does BODYTRAFFIC infuse different dance styles when choreographing new works?
Tiare: As a repertory company, BODYTRAFFIC has developed a keen eye for seeking out talented choreographers that bring a distinct voice and language to their work. We pride ourselves on focusing on the specific and diverse aesthetic of each choreographer, as we work to maintain the integrity of each piece.
How are performances different from dancing in rehearsal?
Tiare: The biggest shift that I feel from rehearsal to stage comes from the energy of the audience. I am constantly in awe of the unmatched excitement each audience member brings to our performances. From the stage lights and the costumes, there’s a vibrancy and magic that only exists on the stage. I’m so grateful we’ve been able to continue to perform live this year and share our passion with people around the world.
How do company members prepare for the show?
Tiare: Each company member has their own individual pre-show ritual. I like to listen to music while I’m getting ready to calm my mind and focus my energy. My warm-up consists of exercises that help me find my balance and ignite my muscles so I feel mobile, warm, and grounded. I also like to visualize the piece I’m performing to connect myself to the narrative. All of the dancers will gather just before the performance to breathe together and exchange “good lucks!”
Your upcoming performance at DPAC features a performance called Snap. Can you explain what Snap is?
Tiare: Snap is a piece choreographed by Micaela Taylor. The work centers around one’s desire to break out of societal conformity and find their individual voice of expression. This is demonstrated by strong, dynamic, robotic unison movement juxtaposed with various individuals breaking out in their own groove with extreme facial expressions. Much of the music in the piece is inspired by James Brown.
What’s the most enjoyable part of group work? The most challenging?
Tiare: My favorite part about working in a group is the ability to collaborate. I love experiencing the company’s collective energy when we share ideas and thoughts that help elevate our work. The most challenging part is cleaning each piece. In this process, we need to make sure everyone is executing the movement the same and in complete alignment with the piece’s aesthetic.
Special thanks to Tiare Keeno for her thoughtful answers. Purchase your BODYTRAFFIC tickets soon to experience in person the “unmatched excitement” Ms. Keeno describes!