Dancer Dalia Carella speaks with dance students

Dance students listen to CarellaDance students listen to Carella

Dalia Carella, internationally recognized dance fusion artist, choreographer, performer, and mentor from New York City, visited the IU South Bend campus in October where she talked with dance students. Carella was in town for a performance at the Battell Community Center.

In 2006, Ms. Carella portrayed the late Ruth St. Denis in an off Broadway production of “Desert Sunrise,” written by Misha Shulman. She spent six months researching Ruth St. Denis before choreographing the production and dancing the lead role. Carella’s six months of research impressed the IU South Bend dance students and demonstrated how passionate she is about her dancing. “She did everything possible to make sure her show would be perfect and exact,” said student Katelyn Medich. Carella inspired the 120 student audience with her description of the research she did using NYC resources and libraries. The audience watched film of the production and a lively discussion followed. 

Carella’s dedication to dance impressed the student audience. Carella has a “presence about her, a light that is interesting,” said Brienne Steinke. Erica Seger, described Carella as having a “wider perspective of the art of dancing.” Her dancing also won rave reviews. According to Ausra Dzidolikaite, “the dances on the floor were animalistic … but appeared really flexible and graceful.”

Carella is a woman who seems as though she never wanted to be stuck doing one thing forever. This inspired Dé Bryant, professor of Community Psychology at IU South Bend, because “she was always reinventing herself and always growing.”  Carella has diversified herself in order to keep reinventing herself and growing as a dancer.  The passion Carella has for dance was reflected in her lecture. Rachel Cogswell noted she could see “how much she loves what she does and it makes me appreciate dance more.”

Many of the students agreed that it was nice to have someone of such high caliber and talent come to IU South Bend, and they would like more people with credentials like Carella’s to visit campus. The dance students and dance department thanked Dean Curtis for the opportunity to engage in discussion with someone who has taken their craft mainstream and had her work acknowledged globally by an artistic audience.