ABOUT MIJKALENA SMITH
I am a dance artist turning poetry into motion. My work carves a new path, one of discovery, intrigue, and submission rooted in the fundamental value that the body is a sacred space.
The sturdy seedling with arched body comes
Shouldering its way and shedding the earth crumbs.
“Putting in the Seed” by Robert Frost
My pen rapidly travels across the page… sturdy… I frantically circle… arched… shouldering… I begin to improvise as the words swim in the forefront of my creative brain… sturdy, arched, shouldering…
I turn poetry into motion.
I create my work through my relationship with my own body. It is through dance that I rediscover myself. This journey makes my work every-changing, finding a flow of sustained, sequential, weighted movements driven by internal articulation of the torso. I interrupt this flow with sharp gestures of the arms and legs, serving as a reminder to anticipate change.
I ground my work in the idea that every work is a collaboration, creating phrases and molding improvisational landscapes that invite my dancers on their own journeys of renewal. My work is my way of healing a broken path while carving a new one of discovery, intrigue, and submission rooted in the fundamental value that the body is a sacred space.
Mijkalena (Mijka) Smith is a Philadelphia-based dance artist originating from Elverson, Pennsylvania. Mijka earned her BFA in Dance from Temple University, graduating Magna Cum Laude of her class and receiving the Frances Bowden Award for Excellence in Dance. Trained in Ballet, Modern, African Diasporic, Hip Hop, and Improvisational techniques, Mijka has had the honor of studying under renowned dancers and choreographers such as Clyde Evans, Kyle Clark, Kun-Yang Lin, Merion Ramirez, Megan Bridge, Mark “Smart Mark” Boston and Shanika “QP.” Mijka currently works as a teacher, dancer and choreographer. Her most recent choreographic interest is in integrating poetry, movement, and music to create a rich artistic experience.