On the night of August 31, I stood on the EMW stage before an audience of friends and supporters, teaching an excerpt from a dance I choreographed with Terina Jasmine Alladin. Our creative process is fueled by the analysis of our personal experiences; this particular movement phrase was a response to my history of self-harm. I decided not provided this context for the dance to our guests. That night, my purpose in sharing the movement was to provide source material for them to manipulate through an improvisational structure taught by Joe Burgio. Divided into two groups, we took turns being performers and observers. Everyone gave new life to the dance as they colored the space inside the choreographic frame with their own stories. We were playing. We were testifying and witnessing. We were embodying the vision of Costasis Arts Collective, the interdisciplinary group of artists and entrepreneurs we had gathered in support of.
Our dance was just one of the memorable experiences we shared that night. Performances by Ensemble Inedit and Pampi were certainly highlights of the evening. Terina and I were also grateful to premiere an untitled work-in-progress and offer our youth and adult classes at the Dorchester Kroc Center as raffle prizes.
This gathering was what Terina and I had envisioned three months ago, as we crafted the mission and values of our new company, Costasis Arts Collective. Costasis Arts Collective utilizes the arts to facilitate relevant dialogue and promote the visibility of underrepresented stories. We seek to unify the creative change-makers in Boston to form sustainable and equitable models for art-making, art education and performance. Costasis is fortunate to have the support and energy of many arts enthusiasts and professionals in the area, as affirmed during our fundraiser. We give our thanks to EMW for being an incubator of cross-disciplinary artistic creation and performance. We give our thanks to the performers, volunteers and donors who made the fundraiser a night to remember. With this momentum, we will create the artistic community we want to see. How will you take part?
For more information on Costasis Arts Collective, visit costasis.org.