Susana Weingarten on DanceVert at Dance Place






My partner and I have had a dance company for 20 years. Last year we relocated from Ohio (where we made a huge mark, collaborated with many artists, and worked in many schools and universities.) Our transition to the DC area has brought a shock of test after test. Our art is our priority, but we are looking for jobs as Artists that Teach with The Kennedy Center, Young Audience of Virginia, and independently in schools, health clubs and whatever place is interested in dance (not exclusively as an art, but as a means to health.)

Our first performances in the area are February 13 and 15 at Dance Place. We will be presenting a program of chamber works – solos and duets from past and recent present. We created the program with the theme of Spirituality and Sexuality in mind. I believe that many of our problems as a society come from personal issues with Spirituality and Sexuality. I believe that Sex and Spirit are not separate from each other, and that if they are there is a problem. I believe there are many layers and dimensions to life that many people are oblivious to. The world is not like the one presented to us through TV, radio and propaganda. The form and style of our dances take different shapes, as will be seen at these performances. But we are always working these issues.

I love all of ‘the arts’. I love music because I am married to it, and many genres and styles are mine. I love visual arts, and enjoy oil painting. I enjoy writing and would love to write and produce film. But as the Great Duke said: there are two kinds of music – good and bad. Just as wine or food or clothes or anything in life, I work for the good.

What is is Spirituality for me? Simply put, the relationship that I have with the world in general (simply put.) And how does that connect to Sexuality? Again, simply put, it is how we procreate, and is a central emotional attribute of many problems/issues in our psychological lives. I believe that kids need to be taught as soon as possible of the beauty and reality of sex as many other aspects of life…I believe one must talk to kids openly and without secrets or lies, because if we do not, they only learn to hide and lie in their lives, and to fear much.

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The program we’ll be performing Feb 13 and 15 is tagged as ‘Mature Content’, mainly because of partial nudity. The reason for the nudity is that these issues are not easy stories to tell, and they are clearly understood with conventional imagery. What do I call this style of work? We have done it for a long time, and though it has been called risque, edgy, and different, I am not certain that it wouldn’t be better to call it Realism.

I love to follow my instinct, but in many cases this goes against what the “norm” would call for. If I need to use nudity for a Purpose in my work I have no question nor concern if ” someone ” would be offended. I need to be creating regardless of what it is created. I need Art in my life. I believe there is much too much interest in money, sex and food. Those three need to be balanced as they become addictions that break and kill the possibility of great achievement, and great processes. I suppose what I am saying is that everyone eventually in life is given a special gift or skill that can be developed for a good human reason, and if we do not listen carefully, this can be ignored, and humanity does not benefit from our lives here on earth.

I am very fond of the following quote from Andre Gide: “Art is a collaboration between God and the artist, and the less the artist does the better.”

Currently my life is going through many tests. We all go through these regularly, and it is up to us to understand and go with them, or to get frustrated and fight. I have been a dancer and an actress all my life, but I really believe that no dancer, or artist, or person can get too polished or really get to be so darn good and so much inspired in one life. I think it takes many lives to fully express our passion.

We’re a little concerned for this show. We are new here, and many have no clue who we are. I grew up in a country where the culture is old, and the traditions are strong. I am shocked and disquieted by the lack of humanity and lack of consciousness that I find daily in this area. I feel that I sometimes feel this is a close-minded and conservative community for our work. I hope to help with my art, and would love to see an audience that genuinely wants to grow and learn what they do not know from an artist. It would really be wonderful to find many people coming to see our work, to see another side of this area.

The performances will be on Friday , February 13, at 8PM, and Sunday, February 15 at 4PM (2009) at the Dance Place, located at 3225 8th Street NE Washington D.C.

Susana and TomBorn and raised in Mexico City, Susana started her Ballet training at the age of four in The Mexico City Academy of Dance under the direction of Ms. Cristina Perez Escamilla. She studied modern techniques at the Ballet Nacional de Mexico, at the Ballet Independiente de Mexico, where she danced professionally. She moved to New York City, continuing her dance training, appearing with Linda Diamond and Dancers at the Symphony Space, and Lincoln Center Annex, in New York City.

While in New York she met her future husband – Tom Evert – a Paul Taylor Company member. They moved to Cleveland, Ohio with their son, Max, and co-founded “The Tom Evert Dance Company”, where she served as artistic associate, principal dancer and choreographer for ten years. During those years the company toured extensively nationally and internationally, participating in collaborations with prestigious organizations including: The Great Lakes Theatre Festival, The Cleveland Orchestra, and The Cleveland Museum of Art.

Currently Susana is the co-Director of DANCEVERT. Through her years as a teacher, she has developed a unique style blending modern dance techniques, QiGong, and Afro-Latin and Caribbean dance styles. Susana has won several awards of excellence in choreography and performance, including awards from The Ohio Arts Council, and Northern Ohio Live magazine.

Bourgeon’s mission, through our online publication and community initiatives, is twofold: to increase participation in the arts and to improve access to the arts. Bourgeon is a project of the not-for-profit Day Eight.
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