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October 2022: Eliza Regényi
Who is Eliza Regényi in a sentence?
A passionate and musically oriented person that loves to share the joy of dance.
Tell us a bit about your work and your practice.
My husband and I have our own work called “Repique au pied et Samba à la main”. It’s a minimalist percussive-dance project that challenges us to explore creativity and technique. Our first idea was to fuse both our backgrounds together, Ballet (me) and Afro-Brazilian dance (him), in a way, our number is a reflection of our relationship. Simple, joyful and energetic, the dance and the drums co-create harmony, passion and take us on a historical journey through Afro-Brazilian culture with elegance, softness and precise execution.
How long have you been dancing?
Since I was five with a hiatus in my early 20s. One of my favourite childhood rituals was running to my room to change into a big blue taffeta dress so I could go dance salsa with my mom in the kitchen.
How does dance fit into your life currently?
I should open this by stating that my husband is a drummer by trade, our lives are a constant “dance party”. Whether in the kitchen cooking, coming up with new ideas over a glass of wine or rehearsing wherever we find a spot. We also have live performances that we do, along with our weekly practice schedule.
Dance also is able to come with me to the workplace; I am a Registered Massage Therapist and a lot of my practice is focused on rehabilitation and movement.
How would you describe dance’s impact on your life?
Dance allows me to connect to a higher power, to the others around me and to myself. It’s helped me heal and recover from some of the saddest moments of my life. It’s also given me the greatest joys of my life, including the moment where I met my husband and influencing my career choice.
What three core values drive your engagement with dance?
Do you have a particular practice that you carry out every day or have you implemented new practices as a way of adapting to the current climate?
I’m always rotating through a daily practice; Wim Hof breathing exercises, tending to my plants, and reading.
What would you say are the most significant benefits for you being a Dance Centre member?
We were fortunate to participate in the last 12 Minutes Max. The opportunity to create, the studio time and chance to perform our piece with feedback was very valuable to us. Some of my favourite benefits from 12MM was the creative process that challenged us to summarize a big chunk of history into a small piece of time and also the relationship building that it allowed us as a couple. Working through a piece together as couple where you have to respectfully present and destroy ideas without destroying each other has made us even stronger.
How have you been spending your time during the Covid-19 pandemic, and what are you most looking forward to doing moving forward?
Even with the studios closed we were out at Robson Square practicing. The cold in February didn’t stop us. I’m looking forward to a safer climate to where travel can happen and I can go to Brazil to train and fully immerse myself in the culture, dance, and music.
Interested in becoming a Dance Centre Member? Learn more here
Photos: Kitty Yu and Mark Barba