Arabesque Earthshakers recently had their 5 year anniversary this past Spring. It is has been a very exciting and enlightening journey. I created this ensemble idea as an angry reaction to the ridiculous constant point being made in the media about BMI and that it was unhealthy to be over a certain number.
I have taught dancers of all sizes for about 30 years and I saw no indicator that this was true.and could argue for the contrary. In fact the only unhealthy issue was the constant messaging that skinny was good and not skinny was bad...still makes me angry. Thank goodness, articles are now being written about being so-called "overweight" is the healthier way to be.
Earthshakers was created to change the conversation.
Earthshakers have beautiful, joyful and healthy weight. Apparently many in the BD community had negative things to say about my intention and that the name and idea was insulting to the women I was exploiting, etc. By saying such things, it only proved my point even more that the view needed to change.
In 5 years Earthshakers have received several standing ovations from major audiences. I still run up against brick walls trying to get them on stages but when it happens, audiences are thrilled.
Recently, the Earthshakers decided to take it to the next level with a kick-ass choreography and new top-of-the-line costumes from Egypt. Sad news comes with their debut of this piece as it will be the last performance with Telicia Allen. We will lose her as she moves south of the border and it will feel like a limb lost.
There are so many glorious photos of ES mostly featuring their joy and exuberance, but this simple shot by Peter Lear has got to be my favourite.