Studio Arte Presents Meghen McKinley

Meghen McKinley is a modern dancer, choreographer, and educator. She is an Assistant Professor in Dance at Western Kentucky University, where she teaches all levels of Modern, Choreography, Improvisation, and Dance in Culture in addition to Ballet and Jazz Technique. Professional choreography and performances include: Drive, Inside These Walls, ID – Moving Collective: Louisville, KY; Champaign Arts Salon: Champaign, IL; Zodiaque Dance Company: State University of New York at Buffalo; From Dusk to Dawn – Anderson University: Anderson, IN; collaborative choreography,Locus of Control with Kylene Stephens – Motus Dance Company: Indianapolis, IN; and collaborative skype choreography, Wreckage – with Teal Darkenwald: East Carolina University. She has performed with Germaul Barnes’ Dance 4U Project/Black Bones at 92nd St. Y; NYC, Dance Martha Dance! Bernier Dance, DeXDance Contemporary Dance Company, The Hatch, Greenspace, Dancers Responding to Aids – St. Marks Church; NYC, and Orlando Fringe Festival. She is co-director of Convergence Dance Theatre in Honolulu, HI where the company presented annual concerts in addition to performance work at the Honolulu Art Museum, First Fridays, MicroFest Honolulu, Honolulu Book Fest, Puja, and Oahu Fringe Festival. Meghen has also presented research and choreography at regional American College Dance Festivals. She continues to pursue her research interest in exploring the Relationship Between Media and Dance on the Performance Stage. Current dance films include; All Around Us – a multi-regional dance film, Inside These Walls, x1, and Variables. Research and Movement Investigation also continues through master classes in Integrated Movement Systems. Meghen received her BFA in dance from SUNY Buffalo and her MFA in performance and choreography from The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

 

 

About Trevor Edwards

Studio Arte presents an afternoon of dance with Trevor Edwards and Meghen McKinley, from Western Kentucky University.

Trevor Edwards, Junior Dance Major from WKU, will be presenting his FUSE Grant by showcasing choreography created through the process of choreographic storytelling to preserve the methodology of post modern pioneer, Anna Halprin. Edwards will also be presenting a question forum concerning his project and what it’s like to be a college Dance major. Light refreshments will be served.
Sunday, 5 de Febrero 2017
346 Main Ave. 3rd floor
Norwalk, CT 06850
Time: 4PM

A little bit about the dancer..

I move to inspire. I move to heal. But more importantly, I move to educate others on what moves me in hope that they will begin their own movement—whether this be mental or a physical.

My choreographic process begins with the realization that dance is an understood language for communicating among all humans regardless of race, age, or even disability. I create in a way that uses this language to promote activism, create change, and reinforce the importance of love— now more than ever. I find my passion in creating work that holds a purpose beyond providing pure entertainment, but rather challenges my audience to think, learn, and react.

To expand, I prefer to create work without the label of a specific style, although I am inspired most often by post-modern movement. My movement most often can be centered on three general concepts: Gestures, repetition, and basis of intent. These words often arrive in my mind first when beginning a work. With gesture I am able to generate specificity within understanding. This is the articulation of my thoughts and feelings in a condensed, easily recognized statement. Repetition allows my work to be interpreted, misinterpreted, and reinterpreted. This tool acts as a constant reminder of what I am trying to convey to my audience. Finally, I convey my message through the basis of intent. It is first, and foremost, the most important part of creating for me. Without an intent, a work has no purpose. Without purpose, you have done no work.

 -Trevor Edwards

How well do we understand the arts?

by Jennifer Wiesner
Originally published by Latin Colors Magazine, on August 2015

When we talk about art, we are touching on a subject that I’m passionate about because I’ve lived it. I could write page after page about it, but, to highlight what’s most relevant I’ll focus on the following.

Art the highest manifestation of human activity, an essential component to our development. It’s been scientifically proven that being exposed to the fine arts from an early age inflicts a great deal of sensitivity on a person, which in turn, will develop a solid set of ethical standards as that person enters adulthood. That sensitivity is what lifts our spirit and helps us to discover new aspects about ourselves despite dogmatic beliefs and a broader view on life.

Music, for instance, helps with concentration. As we listen to music, our minds drift away on the subconscious and it enables us to focus within ourselves. It also enables us to strengthen our hearing and this, in turn, make us more perceptive.

Literature develops our analytical thinking skills, our vocabulary becomes more extensive and fluent, our ideas become easier to bring across with greater clarity.

Drawing and painting reflect the process of selecting elements that can be incorporated with a new meaning.

The theater allows us to nurture our creativity, both individually and within a group, it stimulates interaction with others through the dramatic interplay which in turns leads to building self esteem and confidence.

Dance promotes teamwork, and in consequence, it raises awareness on important values like solidarity, respect for diversity, tolerance and enhances our value over our own identity.

The important question is: If the arts are so beneficial for our children, why is it that we don’t give it the importance it deserves?

In current times, on which the media like TV and technology have tremendous influence over people, and especially our children, we allow them to consume content that lacks a positive effect; this prevents them to live an active lifestyle and stimulate their intellect as they become accustomed to perceive message and not to think or release their energy.

It is of critical importance that parents become better informed about the important role of arts and culture in the lives of our children. That way, we can experiment what each artistic expression can bring forward on to their lives; if parents would be more supportive with the arts, their children would earn the tools to achieve greater assertion and confidence to execute any artistic endeavor.

So don’t delay it! Introduce your child to any artistic activity, I can assure you that you will not regret it!

Jennifer Wiesner, is a professional ballet instructor with more than 20 years of experience combined between her native Ecuador and the U.S. She’s currently the director of her own arts academy, Studio Arte, located in Norwalk CT. To learn more, visit www.studioartect.com or call (203) 663-1414

Enjoying Art is Good for our Health

By Jennifer Wiesner
Originally published on Latin Colors Magazine, March 2016

Did you know that your state of health, your satisfaction with life and your levels of anxiety and depression are closely associated with your participation in activities of art and culture?Continue reading

The Important Role of Being on Stage

 

By Jennifer Wiesner, Director
Originally published by latin Colors Magazine on July 2016

Who doesn’t remember when in elementary school, the teachers would make us practice without rest, choreographies of folkloric dances to then be presented in the homeland’s festivities, sports activities, etc.?! At least that happened in my hometown Guayaquil when I was a child. It was one of the activities the public enjoyed the most. Continue reading