by Jessica Pineda

The body…what a great divine invention! A vehicle of light, a cosmic vessel, a starship. A magnetic electro-conductor, a smart organism, alive and completely organic. Little we understand about our own bodies, its chemistry, its biology, its neuroscience, its emotional intelligence, its resonance and its musical qualities. Little, I say, because as much as comprehension on the body/mind/soul karma and connection has evolved from the dark ages, the manifestation of our collective consciousness still shows a world of proof that the more we know, the less we understand…or as the famous cultural influencer and greatest wise philosopher Socrates said, “The only true wisdom is in knowing I know nothing.” He loved to dance.

“Music and dance are two arts that complement each other and form the beauty and power that are the basis of happiness” – Sócrates

Inside the world of Fine Arts, las Bellas Artes, dance is considered one of the most beautiful body/mind/soul practices. Its study of the body consciousness makes a vast ancestral discipline, in which movement, sensations, breathe and intuition, play the most important roles in manifesting one of the oldest and most universal languages…the language of the soul. Through discovering its code, we can upgrade our consciousness, to such a degree that even the most tormented mind, if only for a precious moment, can find some peace; or on the other hand, dance can also make the observer lose their mind, and give the dancer total control of it. As a fun clear example of this, observe your mind when you think Nureyev, Anna Pavlova, and Isadora Duncan, then contrast to Madonna, Shakira, Britney or Beyoncé, or your favorite table dancer. Better yet, observe what happens around you next time you decide to really, really, truly dance. As in everything else, it is a matter of consciousness.

Simply put, dance is power. By quieting the mind, it gives you happiness.

Fascinated by the power of dance, Destino focused its attention closer to the world of dance by interviewing arts impresario and dance activist CHRISTINA LYON, who in 2013, founded Gala de Danza in Los Cabos. What follows is the interview she kindly gave to our Destino readers:

Photo by Dan Krauss

Who are you?
I am Christina Lyon, GDD Founder and Artistic Director, former dancer with American Ballet Theatre, and guest artist with English National Ballet in London among others. Currently an international talent scouter, dance activist and arts impresario.

What is your intention?
To have not the biggest Gala in the world, simply the best.
What is the story behind Gala de Danza?
In 2013, I started Gala de Danza on behalf of a beautiful young dancer by the name of Mariana Carrillo. I had been coming to Los Cabos and inquired if there were any local ballet schools in the area. It led me to Danza Téllez and its director the otherworldly Lourdes Téllez. To me, this woman is the Mother Theresa of México. It was Lulu’s dedication that inspired me to create Gala de Danza.

What inspired you to make Los Cabos your forum?
I always say that I did not choose Los Cabos, Los Cabos chose me! I was amazed by the level of talent at the school, and the students hunger, desire and passion for dance. One of the things that struck me the most was that none of them had ever seen live performing arts. They had watched videos but nothing live. I scouted Mariana and invited her to train exclusively with me in California. Mariana has performed with Gala de Danza since the first year and has gone on to receive a scholarship to the University of Southern California where she is studying dance under the direction of Jodie Gates and world-renowned choreographer William Forsythe.

What have you learned about Los Cabos, through the experience with Gala de Danza?
Los Cabos is a true paradise. The local community is warm, friendly and has always supported us. I found a niche in the market and our Gala has grown to become one of the best Galas in the world.

What is your calendar of performances for 2018?
We start Thursday, March 15th with “Harp and Horchata,” special preview performances, the cast of GDD 2018, among them William Close and the Earth Harp, sensational youth talents from around the world, and students from USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance with Cabo ́s own Mariana Carrillo.

What is the vision of Gala de Danza in 5 years?
To continue to foster talent, to give the platform to emerging artists to share the stage with renowned stars, to continue collaborations with dancers, musicians, choreographers and have a one-week long music and dance festival.

What is your recipe for happiness?
Dance!

Anything you would like to add?
We need to shed light on the Mexican talent, there are many talented young artists that need our support.