Dancer Dish: Ciara McCormack Greenwalt
If you were a meal; what meal would you be & why?
(I had to ask my husband and an internet quiz to help me answer this one...)
I would be a fancy sandwich or a hearty salad at a bright cafe where you're meeting a friend for lunch. Lunch is the sweet downtime in the middle of a busy day, something I've been doing my best to cultivate this year, and the best ones come with a good conversation and inspiring surroundings.
On the weekends, I'll meet you for B.R.U.N.C.H. Same rules apply.
If you had to pick one book to read right now what would it be & why?
Right now, I'm reading "Pearls, Politics, and Power" by Madeline Kunin, an insightful look at women in politics (by the first female governor of my home state, Vermont.) My mom gave it to me four years ago, and I finally picked it up on election day this year. It's inspiring and offers great information about how to be more involved in our democracy. I just wish I was as motivated to pick it up and keep reading as I am when I read fiction!
If you could play hooky for a day or two; what would you do?
If I could play hooky for two days next to a free weekend, I might give into my husband's wish to take a spontaneous weekend trip to Tokyo. Or, I might hide in my apartment.
What would you say is your favorite place you've visited/traveled to & why?
On our honeymoon, my husband and I enjoyed a classic tour of the Mediterranean. Rome and Seville captured my heart. Standing in front of the Pantheon gave me chills.
If you had no ability to dance--what other art form would you choose?
That's not a thing. But, if I had to, I would fall back on my creative writing minor and revive my love of poetry.
What is your favorite dance memory?
I have to pick a favorite??!?! That's not possible.
Was it the time my high school dance teacher said my senior year recital was "pretty much the Ciara show"? Was it the Contemporary African dance I got to perform in college? Performing Martha's Steps on the Street? Finding an amazing community in Seattle through dance? Every opportunity I've ever had to perform intensely emotional and heartbreaking works?
D. All of the above.
What is your most embarrassing dance moment?
This is still kind of a sore spot, since it happened in the last year, but... Once during a show that had me running around like a mad woman, I completely forgot to put on my ballet slippers for the one piece that needed them, and performed the entire thing blessedly barefoot. I was completely oblivious until the other dancer pointed it out after we got offstage.
Option 2: For one informal showing in college, we were given long skirts to perform in right before hitting the stage. On one of my exits, I stepped on my unfamiliar skirt, and what was supposed to be a graceful step over before running off became a hard fall, and I rolled offstage.
Who is/was your biggest influence as an artist?
I've always been inspired by Doris Humphrey. She was an influential pioneer in her field, a wife, a mother, and a reliable business partner. She proved to me that you can make a career as a dancer and still be a real human being.
When do you remember first saying, "I want to be a professional dancer"?
I'm pretty sure my parents would tell you that I got that into my head before I started forming memories. In high school, two things made me realize that I had to have dance in my life: I had a knee injury that limited my movement, and I spent a month at an amazing music camp in the mountains living in small, rough cabins with nowhere to work out or give myself class. When confronted with the possibility of not moving, it became clear that my only option was to dance forever.
What excites you the most about Intrepidus' third season?
I am so excited to see what this year's show will be like, but I am mostly psyched to be back in the studio with this community of gorgeous, spunky, inspiring women.
Lastly, what inspirational quote is resonating with you as of late?
"In every person the best, the most important part is that which remains from childhood." - George Balanchine