Whilst many of her peers were busy enjoying the just ended festive season, for local dance choreographer and former Mophato Dance Theatre member, Samantha Claire through her dance company, Pinc Productions jetted out of the country to New York, USA for a benchmarking mission with experienced, seasoned dance and fitness experts on how best to improve her fledging craft.
Now excited to be back in the country and reenergized, ready and raring to conquer the world, as well as impart what she learnt in the Big Apple, Claire said even though it was a personal trip to the US, which included a stopover in Puerto Rico, she ultimately stayed in New York where she specifically trained with seasoned dance masters.
The young lass expressed ow her trip was a big success professionally and now looks forward to making more meaningful collaborations in the US.
“The idea was to experience how dance is done in the US so as to sharpen my skill set and knowledge base. The US is worlds apart from us down here in Botswana and Zimbabwe though to a lesser extent in the latter. I would say Zimbabwe is ahead of Botswana in that there are multiple professionally run dance studios across the country as well as a National Theatre and other formal institutions that support dance, theatre and the arts in general,” she quipped.
Speaking on the revolutionized US dance industry, Claire was quick to define the industry as fully-fledged and a career making move.
“US dance is as formal an industry as any other. I took a class at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Company, which is a renowned house for dance and has worldwide acclaim. The studio which is a three story building runs like any organization with staff, a functioning reception desk with security, multiple well equipped dance spaces a staffed apparel store with Ailey merchandise and dance gear, a functional online booking and payment system on their user friendly up to date informative website. The staff and teachers are also very professional and well trained,” she said.
Claire remains optimistic that she is bringing home more skills in teaching and a bigger perspective on how to improve the way we dance in Botswana.
“I’m actually more interested in taking my fellow Africans out. Having people come here (New York) is great but international exposure and experience is even greater in my opinion. We often have people come down to equip Botswana but I would like to see more of us going out of the country to gain international experience. I plan to continue teaching and choreography and working on my new production company,” she concluded.