We had the good fortune of connecting with Sara Pizzi and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sara, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
Co-founded in 2021 by Aika Takeshima, an immigrant from Japan, and Sara Pizzi, an immigrant from Italy, sarAika movement collective is a contemporary dance collective with a distinct taste for interdisciplinary collaboration. Unifying their skills and knowledge as dancers, choreographers, activists, and part of the LGBTQIA+ community, they gathered a shared goal to create art about and for humans. Their company advocates for a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment. sarAika movement collective’s mission is to help people find possibility and freedom within themselves. No matter the mediums in which they work – movement, dance, theater, music, voice, paint, light paint, poetry, AR technology – the themes of their work are rooted in the sense of what people desire or need to let go of. Emotions, opinions, and experiences are what art embodies, capturing vulnerability. When one witnesses vulnerable work, they feel something. The ability to relate to this kind of art increases one’s connection to their authentic self and allows us to connect to ourself and community. sarAika movement collective pursues this value of authenticity to bond their community. Their art is a form of activism documenting key issues and personal insights to highlight minority groups and underrepresented communities and create a safe space for reflection. As far as this society is going to be in need of this, sarAika will promote the longevity of art creating an impact for this society/communities. Thanks to the success of our performances and community events, we want to fund our collective in NYC in order to expand our artistic vision/methodology, inspiring our local young generations, promoting the longevity of art, strengthening the local artists community of artists, and creating an impact creating space for reflection and art as social action, giving voice and provide a safe place of expression to all our close communities such as immigrant, POC, lgbtqa+, building a bridge between artists and non-artists, breaking the concept of regular performance. Our last performances had a topical aspect, and it was wonderful to see the huge impact we made in our community and among non-artist audiences, spark their imagination, expand their knowledge, and create a space of self-reflection and personal identity. Those performed not only for a trained audience but being shared in various community events for under-represented communities, underserved population, child/seniors’ events and offering educational workshops for dancers and non-dancers, expanding the knowledge of contemporary dance and dance as social action to people which would have never met that reality.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m a contemporary conceptual dance artist, which includes also being a choreographer, dancer and dance facilitator. My career started in my teen years with urban/commercial dance, being part of the dance agency “Spotlight work team” that allowed me to perform for national events, competitions, tv shows and advertisements commercials. Therefore, my career had a drastic change of direction once I moved to New York. My education has become primarily based on ballet & modern techniques, landing on the complete focus on the study and application of contemporary dance, being able to create an organic and unique style that mixed my urban background with a more academic and technical aspect. Now, my art is based on any physical medium which can evoke any inner personal exploration, deeper analysis of our inner self, the creation of a safe place for discovering and questioning & can bring togetherness in solving some common social issues. This creates performances which break the concept of standard performance creating collaborative, conceptual, interactive art experiences & teaching any level and any age, prioritizing any class that involves people with physical and mental disabilities or for underrepresented communities. These are the goals of my own movement collective that I founded in 2021 with Aika Takeshima, naming it sarAika movement collective, looking forward to expanding my network and dance abilities to other contemporary dance companies/organizations. I really trust in this project and it makes me proud that last year we were able to grow so much, performing every month for different DEI organizations/events, being able to assist and represent underrepresented communities and voices. Thanks to the success of this year, the schedule for 2023/24 is full and this makes me proud of myself and the NYC dance community. In the meantime, as a performer I’m currently working for several dance companies based in NYC and for some projects of various aspects that can include pure dance or collaboration with visual and performing artists. I’m a company member of: Valerie Green/Dance Entropy (which I’m also teaching artists for afterschool programs), Six Degrees Dance and Reza Dance Project. I’m dance captain of The Next Stage Project & Light Painting NYC. In addition to this, recently I was a project based member for Kaleid Dance Collective & I was guest artists/choreographer/dancer to more than 60 events/organizations based in the 5 boroughs of NYC from 2021. I’m dance teacher for the program Woodside on the Move teaching dance to the combined class that sees youth and seniors together – I’m dance facilitator for MUSICAMENTE institute, offering classes for individuals with autism. Lastly, I’m a videographer/photographer assistant for BECCAVISION.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Somehow this is always the most complicated question, finding myself always so indecisive to choose my favorite spot in between so many cool spots I always love to come back to. Most of all considering that New York is one of my favorite places due the huge variety of places to visit and experience. POV: I love walking, my go to are always cozy places and I’m a real fan of nature. When my friends are visiting I know I cannot go wrong taking the subway to stop at Jefferson St (L TRAIN LINE) to have breakfast at NOOK (on 45 Irving Ave) in this cozy, warm, welcoming cafe with delicious pastries and coffee. Continuing with walking around the area admiring the street art and hidden markets. Proceeding walking in Bushwick heading to Brooklyn Ball Factory, a hidden pearl where you can eat original and yummy Japanese food and drinks. From here, just in a 15 min walk, you can reach Williamsburg in the vintage shopping area, with many hidden spots, gorgeous parks and good coffee places. And if it is not a shopping day, just passing that area you will be close to the Hudson Side, where you can admire the Manhattan Skyline. If you still have gas in the tank, at the North 5th Street Pier and Park, you can have a 10 min ride for only $ 2.75 to Dumbo (a cheap and easy way to have a small trip on the boat). There you can just hang out until the sunset to see the city turning on its light or just can cross the Brooklyn Bridge.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Today I want to give a huge shoutout to all sarAika movement collective team members and the community. As I mentioned previously, a predominant part of the success of the collective is the sense of collaboration and we would have not achieved this level of outreach and growth without a really supportive, creative and genuine team and a long list of community members. Their contribution is essential inside the creation space and outside, allowing the collective to always perform high standard events and products. The continuous support from artists and non artists, coming and sharing our performances and to our community events as classes or open performances, as online followers on social media, newsletter and wesletter. In addition to other organizations which believe in our mission and vision, contributing to the realization of our projects, offering us space, time, budget and open opportunity to give visibility to all the members of our collective, our art and message. Best part of it is that sarAika will be always open to collaborate with different artists and non artists in order to expand our mission and art, and I personally cannot wait to see who is next.

Website: https://sarapizzi.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/_sarapizzi_/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sara-pizzi-a514281a6/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SaraPizzi3

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sara.pizzi.7

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrojXl1b6CortTwOIyKIvCA

Image Credits
BECCAVISION Chanette Manso QDF Marlon J. Mark Harris SDF MEDIA

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