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Robert Abrams
Special Focus
The Alex Theatre
Celebrate Dance
United States
Greater Los Angeles
Glendale, CA

An Interview with Joelle Martinec, Artistic Director for SoleVita Dance Company

by Robert Abrams
February 26, 2014
The Alex Theatre
216 North Brand Boulevard

Glendale, CA 91203

Featured Dance Company:

Celebrate Dance
Celebrate Dance (office)

Los Angeles, CA

presented by Executive Producer Jamie Nichols
Saturday, March 8, 2014 8:00PM
Alex Theatre
216 North Brand Blvd.
Glendale, CA 91203
Tickets: $18-$38
Discounts: Students, Seniors, Children $12 seated with adult
Group rate for 15 or more
More info: www.celebratedance.org
I caught up recently with Joelle Martinec, Artistic Director for SoleVita Dance Company, about the performance they will present at Celebrate Dance 2014. Here is what she had to say.

Robert Abrams: Please describe the performance you will present at Celebrate Dance 2014.

Joelle Martinec: SoleVita Dance Company will be World Premiering a new piece of work. 'Divine in Nature' will feature dancers: Alexa Diaz, Amber Dupuy, Lindsey Fletcher, Isaac Huerta and Courtney Ozovek.

RA: What is your role in the show?

JM: I am the Choreographer of the piece as well as Artistic Director for SoleVita Dance Company.

RA: Have you collaborated with anyone to create your Celebrate Dance presentation?

JM: Yes I have.

RA: Who have you collaborated with to create your Celebrate Dance presentation?

JM: The choreographic process for me is always a collaboration with the dancers and energy in front of me.

RA: What has this collaboration allowed you to achieve that would not have been possible without it?

JM: I am currently recovering from an injury, so I have completely relied on directing the dancers bodies to create the movement in this piece instead of using mine as the foundation and building from there. So the collaboration has allowed the piece to come to life.

RA: In your art that you are presenting at Celebrate Dance, what is unexpected?

JM: For me the unexpected is within the process of creation.

RA: What is "new" or "fresh" about the art you are presenting at Celebrate Dance?

JM: The piece we are presenting at Celebrate Dance is a brand new piece, so these movement phrases and steps have never been seen in this particular order or intention.

RA: How does your art build on what came before?

JM: I create from my life: whether it is a personal experience of mine, a book or a movie I have taken in, a conversation I have had with someone or something that comes to me in a moment while in the shower or driving, so what comes through me has existed before it was created into movement.

RA: How will your presentation inspire the audience?

JM: Inspiration is a deeply personal and sometimes very unexpected thing. I have no idea how it will inspire the audience, but I look forward to presenting the work and evoking an experience for each individual audience member.

RA: Who or what inspires you?

JM: I find inspiration everywhere. There are amazing and wonderous things all around us and I am usually quite taken by surprise what inspires a concept or a phrase of movement. It's the fun of this life.

RA: What makes your dance company a top-notch dance company?

JM: SoleVita Dance Company is top notch because we continue to challenge and change what we do.

RA: If audience members were seeing your Celebrate Dance performance for the second time, what should they pay special attention to in order to enhance their appreciation of your art?

JM: Choreographically I tend to like a lot of different things happening at once, so I would say widen your eyes and take in as much as you can.

RA: Does your art have an activist message?

JM: This particular piece does not have an activist message, but it is not something I shy away from.

RA: Do you work with schools or children?

JM: I do. I love to pass on my knowledge and passion to the next generation of dancers.

RA: Please describe your educational work.

JM: I teach regular classes at various dance studios around Los Angeles as well as Master Classes around the world. I very often lend my voice to the dance convention/competition industry. Two passion projects of mine are the New Possibilities Children's Foundation/The Kushi Project in Rishikesh India and Genesis Sarajevo in Sarajevo, Bosnia.

RA: In her interview, Kate Hutter of L.A. Contemporary Dance Company asked her fellow Celebrate Dance 2013 artists: How is preparing for a group presentation different from presenting only your work? Are there other factors you take into consideration? Do you feel any pressure to be the best or the crowd favorite?

JM: The preparation process is the same regardless if it is a group presentation or a solo SoleVita Show. The only things that change are the amount of rehearsal required and how much pressure is on me.

I find that choreographing for different shows brings something different out in me as a choreographer. The audience is usually very different for a show like Celebrate Dance to whom would be at say a 'Choreographers Carnival'. It's all still SoleVita, but the jumping into point changes a bit. No pressure to be the best or crowd favorite, but fun when someone has that experience of your work.

RA: What questions would you want to ask of members of the other dance companies in Celebrate Dance (other than the questions here)?

JM: What, in your experience, is the most inportant thing to make sure your company is doing in business and artistically?

What is your aspiration for your company in the coming year?
Joelle Martinec

Joelle Martinec

Photo © & courtesy of Denise Leitner Photography

Joelle Martinec in the studio

Joelle Martinec in the studio

Photo © & courtesy of Francis Iacuzzi Photography



Photo © & courtesy of Tim Agler

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