Interview – Earth Dancer (United Nation’s Earth Summit, 1992)

Original Performance on June 3, 1992

Earth Dancer – GW Magazine, page 22, Summer 1993  “This interview is dedicated to all those with whom my life has intersected.”  Maida Withers

Maida Withers is interviewed  on her views of dance, dancing, making dances, collaborating, experimenting, having a meaningful life, and making meaningful work. The interview occurred near the time Maida was leaving with members of the Dance Construction Company for Brasilia and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil to participate with 100 international artists for ecology by demonstrating, performing, creating events during the United Nation’s Earth Summit (Eco ’92) (June 3 – 14, 1992). Artists for Ecology extended our program to Brasilia, Brazil to have more political impact (May 20 to June 14, 1992).

Maida discusses her groundbreaking works involving issues of environment and the Earth that began in the early 1980s.  Maida discusses the Utah Project that led to Utah * Spirit Place * Spirit Planet * Tukuhnikivatz, Rolling Thunder (work recreated in Brazil with MWDCCo and Brazilian dancers), Sky Cloud, Prologue, others.

Maida’s family had been deeply engaged with the Earth during her childhood in Kanab, Utah.  Her family built the Kaibab Lodge eighteen miles from the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in the 1920s…long before their were roads into the North Rim and tourism was not yet a commonly used word. Kaibab Lodge provided the first permanent structures for tourists to eat/sleep and be entertained on the way to the world’s wonder, the Grand Canyon.

MWDCCo participation in the UN Earth Summit was through association with Marilyn Wood, Founding Director of Celebration Art.  Marilyn had an amazing vision for performance for all occasions both formal and informal.

What the press is saying

"Dancer/choreographer Maida Withers stalks her audience, grabs and tugs them into her realm of primitive earth. 'Art is the vehicle to acknowledge the power within us. As an artist for the earth," she says, 'I try to focus on poer from within, not power over the planet...a reverence, a nurturing to make boththe self whole and the earth whole." Shawn Tate

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