Choreographer Spotlight: Alaina Andersen
To Miami, With Love is a series of pop-up performances around Miami choreographed and performed by MCB company dancers. Each headlining work is site-specific, inspired by the surrounding environment and the unique cultural tapestry of the location.
On Sunday February 14, from 6:30pm you can catch all of our pop-up performances at Miami Design District, featuring headline choreography by MCB dancer Alaina Andersen.
Alaina Andersen is a graduate of the Miami City Ballet School and has been a member of the MCB corps de ballet since 2016. We spoke to Alaina briefly about the inspiration for their work, the music and their career highlights.
What about your pop up location inspired you to choreograph?
Alaina: The fresh, youthful, and innovatory landscape of the Design District struck a chord with me and perfectly ties in with my hopeful choreographic vision and the experimental music composed by my younger brother.
Tell us about the music your work is set to.
Alaina: My work is set to a synthesized instrumental piece that was composed by my younger brother, Braden Andersen. It’s always been so rewarding and thought-provoking to collaborate with my siblings, and doing so in a professional sense has given both of us room for suggestion and growth. Continuously tweaking the music to fit the mold of my piece was a great privilege.
Listen to the music here.
How would you describe your choreographic style?
Alaina: I have not choreographed enough to pinpoint a particular style, but it’s been eye-opening to observe the kind of movement my brain is drawn to as I venture into this experience as a new choreographer.
What ignites your choreographic process?
Alaina: My source of inspiration always stems from the music which then guides me to a theme. The thematic elements and movement style of my piece are based purely on the music which has been the main source of my inspiration. The specific movements seem to come last in my process.
Is this your first time choreographing a new work?
Alaina: This is my first time choreographing. I wouldn’t exactly count the pieces my sister and I used to create on each other in our living room as a true choreographic experience.
How has creating and staging a new work with social distancing limitations in the middle of a pandemic influenced your creative process?
Alaina: This pandemic has stretched the limits of what typical looks like, and I’ve found freedom in the outdoor spaces I’ve been “constrained” to create in. FaceTime and Zoom are also tools that I’ve utilized to teach my dancers segments of choreography. Pre-pandemic, this wouldn’t have even occurred to me to be useful.
What has been your career highlight so far?
Alaina: The most memorable moment in my career was actually before I was officially employed with Miami City Ballet. I was still an apprentice but had received my corps de ballet contract when we went on tour to the David H. Koch Theatre. It was absolutely surreal getting to perform Symphony in Three Movements with the Company on Balanchine’s stage before I had even joined the Company.
See Alaina’s new work on Sunday, February 14 from 6:30pm at Miami Design District. Admission is free but advanced registration is required. RSVP here.
RSVPs are currently full, but please check back later in the week in case more tickets are released.
Choreography by Alaina Andersen
Danced by Jordan Martinez and Francisco Schilereff
Music by Braden Andersen*
Photo MCB dancer and pop-up choreographer Alaina Andersen by Jana Carson