Young Choreographers Club
A 4-week workshop series for dance artists ages 13-18
Led by Moonyeka + Rotating Faculty
The Young Choreographer’s Club is a dance-making series for aspiring choreographers and dancers. Led by teaching artist Moonyeka and a diverse local faculty. Participants gain foundational techniques to experiment, collaborate, and bring clarity in this process-centered dance making series. Through movement, voice, music, and teamwork, they cultivate their choreographic voice. The program culminates in a showcase at 12 Ave Arts, where participants share their creations with friends and family. A joint endeavor of Velocity Dance Center and Moonyeka, this initiative builds upon the legacy of two esteemed youth dance programs, LIL BROWN GIRLS CLUB and Seattle Youth Dance Collective.
The suggested age range for this program is 13-18, but we welcome anyone who identifies as a young choreographer.
SESSION 1: Exploring Roles + Movement
In this session, we will begin with group grounding and trust building exercises. This will include building community agreements that will be upheld throughout the duration of YCC. We will then explore improvisatory tasks such as flocking to gain tools that generate movement. After, we’ll facilitate dialogue around the different creative roles that go into dance making. The session will be finished off with learning ways to build phrase work together.
Facilitated by Moonyeka + Akoiya Harris
SESSION 2: Contemporary Dance
This workshop invites the attendees to work with unlimited imagination while pushing the physical boundaries of body and mind.
Approaching choreographic creation with risk, athleticism, abandon, breath, weight, focus, vocal exploration and intention; this workshop emphasizes concepts that nourishes the setting of a choreography. This workshop is divided in:
Warm up to connect body/mind and articulate muscles and skeleton.
Improvisation to explore artistry and imagination of the dancers.
Partnering and dance contact
Tools for choreography to develop specificity of movement execution, coordination and memory.
Facilitated by Moonyeka + Zara Martina Lopez
SESSION 3: Fashion + Technology
During the third session, participants will work with Seattle artist, Jarman Hauser as he facilitates a class about how fashion, costume, and technology can be implemented in a young choreographer’s work.
Participants will be instructed to bring fashion elements to this workshop.
Facilitated by Moonyeka, Arabella Bautista, Heidi Grace Acuña + Jarman Hauser
SESSION 4: Performance
LOCATION: 12th Ave Arts | 1620 12th Ave
This session is focused on preparation and artistic refinement. It begins with a technical workshop on the inner workings of professional theater. Through strategic rehearsal planning and dedicated practice time, young artists hone their performances, leading up to a final showcase in a professional theater setting.
Facilitated by Moonyeka + Akoiya Harris
Moonyeka’s dance and movement foundations root in the Street Styles Communities of South King County and Seattle where they engaged in cypher practices + freestyle forms such as Popping, Tutting, House and Animation. In conjunction, modern dance, improvisational methods, somatics and sensual movement practices across contemporary dance space; their diasporic upbringing, QT show girl magic, and nightlife worlds also inform their practice.
Pre covid-19 Moonyeka directed WHAT’S POPPIN’ LADIEZ?!, LIL BROWN GIRLS CLUB (a movement based mentorship program for young g*rls of color), and organized (e)merge: a movement based healing intensive for dance communities and beyond in September 2019.
You can find out more about upcoming performances, divination offerings, + group courses such as Aswang Movement Incantations, SLITHER: a sensual movement practice, Q TUTS, Doll Animation (Popping) Foundations, and more by following them on:
Instagram: @m00nyeka + @houseofkilig
Akoiya Harris is a movement artist based in Seattle Washington. Her work uses a queer Black gaze to look at the ways art holds personal and communal histories. As a choreographer, she has shown work at the Seattle Art Museum, Wa Na Wari, On The Boards, Friends of the Waterfront, The Moore Theater, and more. Akoiya is a founding member of Black Collectivity, a group that explores memory and culture through embodied responses. She has also performed with Spectrum Dance Theater, Will Rawls, Zoe|Juniper, Third Rail Projects, SoloMagic, and Black Collectivity. She also has the pleasure of teaching at Pacific Northwest Ballet and Ailey Camp.
Originally from Medellin-Colombia, Zara Martina Lopez (They,She,He) is a Seattle based dancer, performer, story teller, filmmaker and photographer. They studied fashion photography in São Paulo, Videodance in Cuba and worked as a video dance instructor at the University of Antioquia in Colombia and as dance teacher in various academies in Medellin. They have performed as a dancer for Yaw Theater, Velocity Dance Center (SFD+I), On the boards, Washington Ensemble Theater, 18th&Union an arts space, Seattle Erotic Festival, Base arts space, Fremont Abbey Arts Center and 12th Ave Arts. Combining mediums such as dance, drag, theater, spoken word, video and photography, their work pulses with the synergy of myriad techniques that give shape to her unique visual poetry.
Heidi Grace Acuña (they/she) is a Filipinx-American multidisciplinary visual artist, fashion designer, costumer, and stylist from O’ahu (Kingdom of Hawai’i). Heidi creates dimensional works in ceramics, printmaking, photography, textiles and fibers. Regardless of the medium, their work addresses community, culture, diversity, identity, gender, and mental health. Heidi is a published artist whose work is part of the North Seattle College Permanent Art Collection. Their multimedia works have been exhibited in Seattle, Bellingham, and Philadelphia. Heidi has done demonstrations and artist talks for their art and their genderless, sustainable, fashion brand, Hybrid Honey. In 2022, Heidi received the Edwin T. Pratt Scholarship and had their first solo show (LUSH) at Western Washington University. Heidi is a founding member and costume designer/soft sculpture artist for the QT Arts Collective House of Kilig. Heidi has worked with middle schoolers and teens as a teaching artist for the Bellevue Arts Museum, The Feels Foundation, and Gage Academy. As a fashion stylist, they have worked with Verizon, King Ranch, and Etheric Vintage. Heidi holds an AA in English from North Seattle College and BA in Interdisciplinary Visual Arts from University of Washington, Art History minor. Heidi lives and works in Seattle (unceded ancestral lands of the Duwamish people).
Jarman Hauser is a local PNW artist from Seattle WA and proud graduate of Rainier Beach High School. Jarman has a background in systems design, audio engineering, and technology development, earning both BA and MS degrees from University of Washington-Seattle. He is active in the Seattle and Harlem, NY communities, supporting academic, fashion, dance, and entrepreneurship communities through board service, philanthropy, and time. Jarman is known for rolling up his sleeves to ride for the cause, whether it’s promoting equity, education, justice, or better economic conditions for the most vulnerable groups within his communities. entrepreneurship. He is well celebrated receiving awards for this impactful work at Amazon and throughout the Seattle community. Jarman’s upcycled, wearable art has been featured in editorial, music videos, and podcasts. He creates street art on outdoor canvases spreading positive messages that represent the natural beauty within a hyperlocal space.
Arabella Bautista is an installation and video artist exploring themes and dreams of their Filipino culture and collective liberation. They have too many CRT tvs and are constantly rearranging their eurorack case.