NEW YORK – The 24th Kalamata International Dance Festival takes place July 13-22 and includes some of the most talented dancers from around the world. This year’s program of 28 events features 11 international dance companies – 7 of which perform for the first time in Greece – 3 Greek contemporary dance companies, 8 outdoor dance performances, 4 workshops, a masterclass, a photo exhibition, and a music concert. Artists from Belgium, France, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Mozambique, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States are performing in Kalamata this summer.
Among them, Marquese Scott and Poppin John from the U.S., who will be performing for the first time in Greece, at the Kalamata Dance Megaron – Main Stage and in the Kalamata Central Square. Two of the most significant figures of animation and poppin dance in the world, the self-taught, pioneering, and groundbreaking duo are a major influence on contemporary dance. They took time out of their busy schedule to talk to The National Herald about the Festival, their work, and performing in Greece.
TNH: You’ve performed all over the world and will be performing in Greece for the first time. What can fans look forward to from your performance at the Kalamata Dance Festival?
Marquese Scott and Poppin John: This show is a combination of Poppin John and Nonstop collaborations and solo performances that we have built together over the past 5 years, some are classics to us and some acts are brand new. We are happy to show the audience a window into the history and chemistry of our dance partnership.
TNH: How long does it take you to plan for a dance festival performance, especially when it’s an international festival?
MS&PJ: It takes a good amount of time to develop a show. It’s more difficult for us because we live on opposite sides of the USA. For this show we met up in Nonstop’s city to rehearse. The first step for us preparing for a show is music selection which is sometimes the most time consuming. After that it’s organizing our showcase and that usually only takes a couple of practices.
TNH: Will you have time to take in the sights while in Greece?
MS&PJ: We always make time to see a country’s sights. We are so blessed and grateful to be able to see the world so we make it a priority to really experience the places that we visit.
TNH: With millions of views on YouTube, do you see yourselves as role models for young dancers?
MS&PJ: Yes, we do. On a daily basis we receive messages, videos, fan art, etc. It’s humbling and very rewarding to know that we inspire people all over the world and getting to know our fans in person is one of our favorite things to do.
TNH: What’s up next in terms of performances and projects?
MS&PJ: We both have busy schedules throughout the year and hope to visit Greece again soon! Thank you!
More information about the 24th Kalamata International Dance Festival is available online: www.kalamatadancefestival.gr.