29 January 2020 10:25

Noma Dumezweni takes the helm of February’s Dance Gazette

The Royal Academy of Dance introduces Noma Dumezweni, the first of three Dance Gazette guest editors in its centenary year – and in the magazine’s history.

Photo: Rachel Smith

Award winning actor Noma draws on a range of topics that have helped to shape the way Noma sees the world and her art form. From the importance of mentoring, to exploring how dancers prepare and rehearse, through to how dance can positively impact on trauma; Noma’s issue shines a light on the interconnectivity of dance and other art forms and the significance of representation.

“I was thrilled when editor David Jays asked me to guest edit Dance Gazette”, Noma explained. “But did I have enough in common with artists in a different field? Was my immediate response too simplistic? But, riffing with David, it became stronger.” When approaching the task of filling Dance Gazette’s pages with stories that would inspire, Noma brought it back to something that everyone can relate to: “The Body. Our Body. The stories we can all tell if we take time to honour each memory and hope, scarred and internal, in this divine (my word) casing. The body is how we move through the world, in joy and pain. I celebrate mine in my work. But is it honest? Would each character I play agree with my choices? I’m fascinated with how we all move in the world. I hope the stories shared in this issue resonate with you.”

David Jays, Editor of Dance Gazette said “It has been a joy to have Noma as our first guest editor. It is fascinating to see dance through a leading actor’s eyes. I also love Noma’s passionate engagement with the world. She uses her voice for good and for positive change, and brings that same curiosity and warmth to Dance Gazette.”

About Noma

Born in Swaziland to South African parents, Noma originally came to the UK as a refugee. In 2006, she won an Olivier Award for her role in A Raisin in the Sun. She has also starred as Hermione Granger in the original West End and Broadway runs of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which garnered her a second Laurence Olivier Award and a Tony Award nomination.

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Dario Calmese

Sitting at the nexus of art, fashion, and academia, Dario is an artist, writer, director and brand consultant currently based in New York City. He received his master’s in photography from the School of Visual Arts and his bachelors in psychology at Rockhurst University in Kansas City. Classically trained in the performing arts, he uses his knowledge of movement, gesture, and psychology to create complex characters and narratives that explore history, race, class, and what it means to be human.

His artistic works have been shown both nationally and internationally (Aperture Gallery (NYC), Jack Shainman (NYC), National Museum of Turkmenistan). Dario serves on the advisory board of The Museum @ FIT, and is a former Ideas City Fellow at the New Museum in New York City. He is a contributing writer for The Huffington Post, The Daily Beast, and The Business of Fashion and is currently a NYC Urban Design Forum Fellow. Most recently Dario curated Fashioning the Black Body (2019) and his show direction for the fashion brand Pyer Moss was hailed in the New York Times as the “best show of Fashion Month.”

His writing will be featured in an upcoming book for the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, published by Rizzoli in 2020.