We recently sat down with Cincinnati Ballet principal dancer and Co-Artistic Director of Moving Arts, Cervilio Miguel Amador, to learn a bit more about what Moving Arts is and why he’s so passionate about it. The festival comes to Cincinnati June 28-29, and tickets are available online at https://www.movingartsco.org/, or by calling the Cincinnati Ballet Patron Engagement Office at 513.621.5282.
Moving Arts was created with the intention of extending dancers’ work over the summer. We always have this 3 months where dancers and choreographers around the U.S. are struggling to find work doing what they love most – choreographing or performing. And I also feel that our career is kind of short, so having these 2-3 months every year where we don’t get to develop as artists is just way too long. So this festival was created to extend that creative performance time and also to give Cincinnati audiences another quality performance over those 3 months.
I started this festival last year in collaboration with Anthony Krutzkamp. Anthony is from Northern Kentucky, came through Cincinnati Ballet’s Academy and then the company itself before going to Kansas City Ballet, where he retired as a dancer. He and Logan Pachciarz started Kansas City Dance Festival there 7 years ago. I danced in that festival a couple of years, and then finally 3 years ago, I said, “We need to do something like this in Cincinnati, and there is no reason why we can’t.” Our original idea was to have two separate festivals, one in Kansas City and one in Cincinnati, but we eventually turned everything into one company and changed the name to Moving Arts, so this way we could put the show together and do a weekend of shows in Kansas City and then a weekend here in Cincinnati. And we’ve been able to combine forces with our knowledge, our sponsorship, and our dancers.
So it’s the same show in each city – the same dancers?
Yes, so the way we do it is we try to hire dancers mostly from Kansas City and Cincinnati. And then we spend three weeks in Kansas City where the dancers and choreographers work to rehearse and put the show together. Then we do a weekend of shows in Kansas City before we travel to Cincinnati for a few more rehearsals and another weekend of performances. Eventually we are looking to grow and have more of a home base in Cincinnati too.
I’m very excited this year about the lineup of choreographers, including Kristopher Estes-Brown and Jennifer Owen. And then we’ve engaged two choreographers who are new to all of us. One is Robert Bondara who is Polish. His work is very new to the States, and I’m thrilled to introduce him to our dancers and our audience. And then we have Ihsan Rustem who’s British and whose work is very contemporary – very gorgeous and smooth. I’m excited for our dancers to learn to move differently.
Speaking of dancers, which Cincinnati Ballet dancers can we look forward to seeing in the festival?
This year we have Melissa Gelfin, Taylor Carrasco, Luca De-Poli, and Daniel Baldwin
Already in Kansas City we offer outreach through things like master classes with our choreographers and dancers as a way to give back to the community. I’d like to also find ways to incorporate that into the schedule in Cincinnati, especially as we hopefully spend more of our rehearsal time here.
I also have some other new ideas to create more of a total experience for the audience by collaborating with other types of artists. When people come to Moving Arts, I want all their senses to be stimulated. I want to have things going on in the lobby, for example where someone is doing a live painting inspired by the show, or maybe improvising music right there in the lobby, or maybe even small bites or a signature cocktail. These things might not happen this year, but hopefully as we continue to grow.
And a final question: I know Moving Arts is high on the list, but is there anything else you’re excited about this summer?
MY BABY!!! I cannot wait to meet my new son who is due June 4!