In Conversation with Natasha Powell from Holla Jazz Performance

Founded by Natasha Powell in 2016, Holla Jazz is an award-winning dance company based in Toronto that explores soulful and funky approaches to jazz dance. The Holla Jazz experience is marked by their cool and contemporary way of producing fresh dance works, all while inspiring a lasting love and appreciation for jazz dance and music. This year, they will be performing their inaugural production, FLOOR’D, in our Late Night A series. We spoke with Natasha about the work and the upcoming festival:

GD: What about your work are you most excited to share with the audience?

N: FLOOR’D was our first production that we presented in 2018. For many of the audience members, it was their first time experiencing jazz dance in this way. I’m looking forward to sharing this work with the Guelph community who may or may not be familiar with jazz dance.

Photo by Tamara Romanchuk

GD: What was your biggest takeaway from the process of creating this work? Has the work shifted over the past few years?

N: Collaboration is key. Physical stamina is important!

Photo by Tamara Romanchuk

GD: This is the first year the GD Festival is showcasing both live and live streamed versions of artist’s works. Can you speak about the opportunity to perform in front of live audiences again as well as view your work digitally?

N: Nothing beats the magic in the room for those that are able to attend live performances. While I’m not personally performing in the work, I do look forward to the shared experience of watching this piece. While I didn’t initially create this work with the digital audience in mind, hopefully viewers will have an opportunity to become familiar with our work, and hopefully be able to connect with us in person in the future!

You can catch Holla Jazz’s FLOOR’D at our Late Night A series, happening on June 3rd from 9:30-11:30 PM, followed by a Festival Dance Party hosted by Holla Jazz themselves! Visit our festival page to see the full festival schedule and to get your tickets.

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