Ballet Nepantla originated from a series of pláticas between founders Andrea Guajardo and Martín Rodríguez, two artists whose early professional identities emerged from distinct genres: Andrea from classical ballet and contemporary dance, and Martin from traditional Mexican folklórico. They envisioned a new form of expression that fused the two modalities, and they envisioned an aesthetic that would speak to the historical, cultural, and social realities of a broader narrative of being Mexican, Mexican American, immigrant, and trans-cultural.
Drawing inspiration from Gloria Anzaldúa’s borderlands theory, Andrea and Martín imagined they could create performances that spoke to the “in-between” qualities of being from both sides of the borderland. They found the idea of Nepantla, a Nahuatl term of the indigenous people of Mexico. Nepantla provides a historical, intellectual, and artistic framework through which to explore the “in-between” spaces of history and culture by exploring new artistic expression that fuses different traditions on stage. Thus, Ballet Nepantla was born in January 2017.
To launch the work, Andrea and Martín recruited dancers who came from both worlds: contemporary and folklórico. They choreographed original pieces and spent the following months building their inaugural show, “Sin Fronteras.” They forged an artistic partnership with Felipe Fournier, a gifted musician who found inspiration in the Nepantla vision. Felipe recruited an ensemble of talented musicians and arranged traditional music that aligned with the spirit and vibe of Ballet Nepantla.
Eight months later, Ballet Nepantla premiered “Sin Fronteras” at the Queens Theatre in Queens, New York, on el diez y seis de septiembre, 2017. Ballet Nepantla received favorable media response for its inaugural show. NBC New York addressed the historical and social purpose inherent in “Sin Fronteras,” when journalist Reynaldo Leanos wrote that Andrea Guajardo: “hopes that every time Nepantla performs, the show will counter unflattering narratives about Mexican and Mexican-American communities. She hopes the beauty of the dance will be like a bridge that connects people who are in this–Nepantla–this “in between” of worlds and spaces.”
White Wave Young Soon Kim Dance Company
Formed in 1988, WHITE WAVE Young Soon Kim Dance Company (WHITE WAVE) strives to inspire audiences through multi-dimensional dance productions reflecting themes and philosophies both modern and timeless. Our mission is to be a potent stimulus for change and expansion of the dance/arts world through the production of dance concerts, classes, residencies, and education. Artistic Director Young Soon Kim’s vision is expansive, challenging the threshold of dance, music, theater and visual art, surging forward to create new possibilities. Ms. Kim creates works of vision and movement language in reverence and awe of novelty that challenge and broaden the boundaries of dance. We provide both emerging and established choreographers/companies with a NYC venue where they can congregate, create, rehearse and present new dance works through our festivals.
After the World première at the 2017 La MaMa Moves! Dance Festival, WHITE WAVE Dance’s Canadian première of “iyouuswe” (read as I-You-Us-We-two) at the 2018 Vancouver International Dance Festival was a resounding success! WHITE WAVE presented “Eternal NOW” at our enormously successful 2019 tour to Korea and China. In Gwanju, Korea, we performed at a special event at the Asian Cultural Center, one of the most prestigious arts complexes in all of Asia. There we participated at the Opening Celebration of the 2019 FINA World Championship Masters’ Games, a sporting event that rivals the Olympics. Following that, we flew to China to perform at the Ningbo Cultural Plaza, as part of a China-US Cultural Exchange program. Dazzled sold-out audiences greeted us at every performance!
During the Summer/Fall 2021, Young Soon Kim, continually created “iyouuswe II, A Dance Film” and a stage version of the production. In October 2021 WHITE WAVE Dance presented three free performances of their newest production, iyouuswe II (I-You-Us-We-Two), on October 9 and 30, 2021 at DUMBO Archway, and two shows at the Home of WHITE WAVE Dance at 5pm as part of the City Artist Corps Grant Initiative.
“iyouuswe II, A Dance Film” was selected as finalist for the 2022 Cannes International Film Festival, Paris International Short Festival, Vancouver Independent Film Festival and an OFFICIAL SELECTION at the 2021 London International Short Film Festival, Espoo Digi-Dance International Film Festival (Finland) and Experimental, Dance, Music Film Festival (Canada).
“iyouuswe III” (read I-You-Us-We-Three) is our multi-year collaboration by pioneering choreographer, Young Soon Kim, in collaboration with our performers, as we continue to explore the body’s 3 dimensions in space. Probing the weight of human emotions, “iyouuswe III,” presents a vividly-colored vision where movement and mise-en-scène seamlessly meld. Especially during this critical time of the covid Pandemic, this piece challenges us to examine who we are, and how we relate to ourselves and to each other. It is a story of developing relationships by which we struggle to find a sense of ‘i’ as part of a ‘we.’
The mission of Earl Mosley’s Diversity of Dance, Inc., is to provide an environment where student artists from diverse ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds can achieve the highest levels of excellence through positive collaborations with teachers and peers. The mission is achieved through various programs including year-round mentorship and support. EMDOD’s teachers and staff ensure that every student is welcomed and celebrated in a non-competitive environment that supports value over volume. The organization strives to build a community of dance that enables each student to connect both technically, artistically, and spiritually with their own art and individuality. Participants collaborate with their peers as they learn from one another and their teachers/artists in programs that model mutual respect and celebrate diversity. EMDOD creates a community where participants can feel safe to explore and cultivate their dreams. Growing together, participants prepare for the challenges that lie ahead for them in the world of dance and life.
Fredrick Earl Mosley is Founder and Artistic Director of Diversity of Dance, which is the springboard for programs such as Earl Mosley’s Institute of the Arts (EMIA) held at Hofstra University in Hempstead, Long Island, Hearts of Men (HoM) a program which is designed to use dance to empower and cultivate a safe space where men of all ages can bond in a community of brotherly love, and Dancing Beyond, a benefit for Dance Against Cancer. A part of EMDODs mission is not only to entertain but to use dance to help affect lives in the most adverse circumstances which is a part of Mosley’s life philosophy. Mr. Mosley’s choreographic credits include the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theater Studio Company, and Dallas Black Theatre. Mosley has also choreographed on schools such as Montclair State Dance Department, The Joffrey Ballet Trainee Program, The Ailey School, Hofstra University and numerous universities and institutions both nationally and internationally. Mr. Mosley has also had work performed at the National College Dance Festival in Washington DC, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, as well as Lincoln Centers Alice Tully Hall, and Lincoln Centers “Out of Doors Series”. Mr. Mosley has been awarded Teacher of the Year 2005, by Dance Teacher Magazine, and Outstanding Artists Award from the Connecticut Dance Alliance for his commitment and love of mentoring and encouraging young dancers to reach for their dreams. He has also received numerous grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Connecticut Commission on the Arts. Mr. Mosley was also awarded the outstanding Mid- Career Award for Excellence 2016 by the prestigious Martha Hill Fund, along with the Elisa Monte Lifetime Achievement Award in 2018.
Mr. Mosley strongly believes fully in passion, spirit, and his commitment to appreciating the differences that truly make each artist unique and respected. Mr. Mosley is a Founder and Director who leads the EMDOD vision with a strong hand for all. He welcomes Diversity not only in art but the life experiences that each dancer brings to the process of creating dance that entertains, educates, and heals the human spirit.