Ana Prada’s career has been up in the air for nearly two decades, and that’s just the way she wants it.
She began studying ballet at age 11 in her native Colombia before moving to New York City at age 19, where she studied at such prestigious schools as the Martha Graham Dance Company and the Limon Institute. But her career really got off the ground five years later, in the late 1990s.
“That’s when I started doing dance trapeze and low-aerial work,” says Prada, who now lives in “a little town in the jungle,” Montezuma-Cabuya, Costa Rica.
Today, she is an internationally recognized aerial silk performer — movement while suspended from drapes of suspended fabric — and aerial dance teacher. She also teaches Gyrokinesis and Gyrotonic and Vayu Aerial Yoga, her own trademarked movement system.
And from April 3-14, Prada will be the Roser Guest Artist at the CU Boulder Department of Theatre & Dance, where she will not only teach, but also hold auditions and create a show to be performed for the public.
It won’t be Prada’s first visit to Boulder. For the past three years, she’s been part of the annual Aerial Dance Festival produced by Frequent Flyers, founded and directed by CU dance lecturer Nancy Smith. Danielle K. Garrison, a graduate student with an aerial dance focus, nominated Prada for the residency after working with her.
“I am thrilled that she will share her experience and knowledge of aerial dance with the students at CU Boulder. I believe it will galvanize students to get more curious about and possibly pursue this increasingly accessible genre of dance,” says Garrison, who has studied with Prada in France and worked as her assistant for dance festivals in Boulder and Santa Barbara.