Marissa Alma Nick graduated from the acclaimed New World School of the Arts and received her BFA from the University of South Florida. She went on to dance successfully as a free-lance dancer in Los Angeles, which ultimately lead to her desire for creating her own all-femme dance company. Believing Miami was fertile ground to explore her ideas about women and dance, she eventually established Alma Dance Theater , and became the founding artistic director for the festival: ScreenDance Miami. Since then, Marissa has continued to produce and create work for women, by women... with the sole intention of empowering women. Her three most notable productions: CASK, FLOWERS and REBEL IN VENUS have all created a safe space for women to tell their stories, and experience that storytelling through the 'lens of a woman who is always transforming'.
REBEL IN VENUS began with Marissa's need to heal her own sexual traumas, and so she began processing the way she knows best, through movement and dance. However, beyond her own story, she was also interested in sharing the stories of her dancers. Each woman had her own story to tell, but simply asking them to share those stories, in public and on stage, required more than the type of trust already established. Traditional rehearsals, normally dedicated to perfecting choreography, evolved into open discussions, meditations, various healing practices and movement therapy.
REBEL IN VENUS awakens us to the reality of our sexual traumas, and then trains us to separate ourselves from the trauma itself. It is a practice that teaches us that we, as women (and femme identified persons), have the absolute right to express our sensual nature without modesty, shame or fear. And REBEL IN VENUS is a way of unifying ourselves through our diversity, because Venus is not just one body type, color or gender stereo type...Venus is a rebel. And she is one because she boldly defy's all traditional archetypes of what it means to be a woman... which she has the power to define, and redefine, for herself.
REBEL IN VENUS, as movement therapy, is a practice and celebration of sensual-dance. This stems from Marissa's background as a professional performer, which also includes pole-dancing and queer-centric burlesque dancing. Through those experiences, she has learned a valuable amount of courage and self-empowerment. And she wants to teach both the physical and mental strength that she has been able to gain by embracing those styles of movement, and dance.
The first lesson?
One of the biggest lessons you will learn from REBEL IN VENUS is: I'm doing this because it makes ME feel good. And I deserve to feel good.This is a main mantra driving REBEL IN VENUS, whether you're watching the show or taking an online session. The goal is to remind you that the expression of your sensuality is meant to benefit you, first and foremost. And there are various ways that we can learn, in order to harness and practice different forms of that expression.
Yet, in order to awaken that sensuality, for some of us, we must first heal our bodies from our sexual traumas. And this style of sensual movement, accessed through REBEL IN VENUS, was created in order to help you address those traumas, release them from your body, and begin to grow toward feeling ready to explore and embrace your sensuality.